Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Adventures in Knitting: Knittens (to warm hands on cold days)

During my experimentation with knitting patterns more complicated than blankets and scarves, I moved on to mittens. 
My first attempt ended in a gigantic mitten better suited for an oven mitt. 
So I started again, with a better idea of how to proceed.
The end result was still a bit bigger than I perhaps would have liked but I used it to my advantage and created felt inserts filled with rice that can be microwaved to provide some extra heat. 

Follow the pattern from Martha Stewart that I posted in an earlier post (also found here) or do what I did and use thicker wool and thicker needles and just cast on half the number of stitches they call for and continue with halving the numbers (except for number of rows, then just go by how wide the mitten looks).

I've taken to calling this knit mittens 'knittens'.

Once your knitten has been cast off, use a darning needles to stitch the mitten together around the edges.
I used a white wool to show what I did, but I removed it after and re-stitched it with the same colour wool to make it look cleaner.

For the microwavable insert, I traced the finished knitten onto a red felt stocking I bought from the dollar store. I ended up having to cut it a little smaller to fit into the mitten. I sewed around the edges, leaving a small opening into which I poured uncooked rice. Add just enough to fill the mitten without leaving it bulging. 

Ideally, use thread the same colour as the felt. Unfortunately in my case my dog took off with the red thread in her mouth and it was too slobbery to use on something I hoped would turn out nice.

I thought about sewing the inserts into the knittens but ultimately figured leaving them as inserts was the better option because they did make the knittens quite bulky.

I gave these knittens to my father-in-law, who works outside and I'm sure with all the crazy weather lately could use something to keep his hands warm. 

They make a cute gift AND I was able to knit both mittens in less than 5 hours so this is a project that won't take a long time to finish.

Here's to a 2014 filled with many more handmade crafts!
(Hopes & Dreams item #9!)

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