Thursday, March 18, 2010
FAIR ISLE MITTENS
All through my high school years I was a very busy knitter. My mother used to brag to others “She’s so industrious!” when in fact she should have been saying “She must be really bored!” I do remember being bored a lot in high school, and knitting filled in the time. My school work was not very demanding (or at least I didn’t really care about it much). The big blocks of time that I could free up were spent with my horse, and the rest was either reading or knitting.
College was different. I found the academic work very interesting, but also demanding. My interests diverged. The horse was sold. What little free time I could find was spent singing in choral groups, spelunking (cave exploring), or traveling. I began to prepare for the career that would absorb the next twenty years of my life, training to be a geologist. Knitting was left behind.
Twenty years later I married a wonderful southerner, gave birth to a baby boy, and quit my job so I could stay at home to raise him (I do believe women can have it all, but maybe not all at the same time). Two more babies came to bless us in short order. Although there were times when having three children under six nearly drove me out of my mind, for the most part I enjoyed every minute at home with my babies. But I did need something to do with my mind and hands while I watched over them, so I knit them a few sweaters. They outgrew them in a month! Sometimes they outgrew them while they were still on the needles!
Eventually I began to try more ambitious patterns, and became completely fascinated with mittens for over a year! Mittens are fast, portable, colorful, and useful.
These at left are from Mostly Mittens by Charlene Schurch. Yikes! They seem to vibrate!
These at right are from Magnificent Mittens by Anna Zilboorg. My mother said I should use them to direct traffic!
And these (left) from Folk Mittens by Marcia Lewandowski.
I still enjoy making mittens, although I have moved on to other things. Right now I’m working on NHM #9 from Selbuvotter by Terri Shea. I’m using Dream in Color Smooshy Sock yarn. I love the colors, but the mittens turned out a little thin and insubstantial, so I lined them with soft Classic Elite Lush angora wool blend. Someone in my family will get these for Christmas next year, so don’t spill the beans!
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