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Thursday, December 12, 2013

Christmas Knitting Journal--Day Two

This post has been a few days coming!  Sadly, there are other things to do besides Christmas Knitting!

Since the previous post lots of things have happened/been done.  A hat and cowl sample have been knit for Joann Fabrics and Crafts.  A scarf sample has been started for Joann Fabrics and Crafts in the worsted weight yarn and needles listed on the pattern.  Since I was trying to complete it in time for the Open House last weekend and realized it was not going to happen, I found some bulky yarn and started a second sample with Lion Brand Hometown yarn.  Neither of them got much further than twelve inches in length but were a good sample of using the same pattern and getting very different results...thus a very good selling point for knitting a gauge swatch!  I delivered them for the Open House, still on the needles.  I have not received any feedback either way but have now picked up the samples and will complete them once the Christmas Knitting is complete.

As far as the actual Christmas Knitting project, I have completed the Bartlettyarns pair of convertible mittens using Ramona Flowers Fingerless Gloves pattern as a starting place.  These worked out somewhat  better than the previous pattern, though the glove part is still humpy under the convertible mitten part which I created myself.

Fingerless interior of Convertible Mittens
To make the RFFG into convertible mittens, I knit up the pattern as written, with the exception that I did a simple knit two, purl two ribbing instead of the fancier ribbings Ramona created.  (Another time I think I will try one of them but in the interest of time, I went the cheap and sure route! )  After knitting the glove as written I picked up stitches on the back of the hand, plus two on each side of the palm then cast on the same number of stitches on the palm that were on the back, minus the four extra picked-up stitches.

Back of Hand with Conversion Bag showing wrong side

Once the original number of stitches were on the needle (I used the Magic Loop method of knitting these convertible mittens so I could knit them both at once!) I started knitting around.  My plan was to knit the back of the hand stitches in stockinette stitch then knit the palm stitches with a little ribbing for three or four rows.

Back of Completed Convertible Mitten...notice the garter stitch band and the stocking stitch tip!
Well, I did knit the palm (cast-on stitches) in ribbing but instantly realized I had botched it when picking up the back of the hand stitches, so to sort of recoup things--you know, like a kitten who is walking along the back of the couch and falls off, the minute she hits the floor does a quick flip and goes off on another project as if that is what she planned to do all along--I did my own "quick flip" and knitted in garter stitch for a few rounds, then turned the work (creating a small hole which I sewed up at the end...) and began in stockinette stitch to finish up.

Palm side of completed mittens with fingerless mitts covered by conversion bag.
The final additional change I made to Ramona's pattern was to close up the top of the thumb. I thought as I was doing the final convertible knitting that I would make a matching convertible thumb top, but in the interest of sanity and time, I just added four rounds of knitting and closed it up.  Fine!  The mittens are done, and don't look too awful.  They are a tad large for the recipient, but she will grow, plus she is a heavy-duty player-in-the-snow so I think she will find them perfect as her hands will stay warm for a very long time with this Bartlettyarn.

So---convertible mittens pair number one, DONE!

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