Pattern: Bird in Hand mittens by Kate Gilbert
Yarn: O-Wool Classic in 'plum' and 'saffron'
Much like the movie Titanic these mittens have serious continuity issues. I think the problem lies in my almost complete inability to choose both the yarn and pattern for a project at the same time. The saffron-coloured O-wool I used for the mittens was purchased to knit a Gretel beret. I had so much leftover after knitting the hat, I decided to pick up a contrasting colour and try my hand (ha!) at some some mittens. Almost a full year later, I cast on. Six months after that, I cast off.
The mittens turned out surprisingly large. I knit the second size up, which meant knitting 'worsted weight' with drastically smaller needles than recommended. Talk about some uptight knitting! No wonder I abandoned the project for so long. Why would I want to work on these tight-ass mittens that were going to be too big to wear anyway? Combine that with trying to teach myself two-hand fair isle? Sheesh!
I figured the only way I would finish these was to stop torturing myself and just knit my regular (right hand all the time) style. It drastically improved my tension both knitterly and psychologically . You can really see on inside of the second mitten where I switched knitting styles just before the thumb!
I conquered one issue sure enough, but why were my mittens so big? I was beginning to think that the pattern just ran on the large side when I made a startling discovery.
O-Wool classic is not worsted weight yarn.
Palm of hand slapped firmly to forehead. I have no clue what led me to believe this yarn was worsted weight. The label clearly states the gauge as 16-18 sts to 10cm on a 5 to 5.5mm needle. I knit this stuff on 2.75mm's! It's amazing I've retained the ability to move my fingers!
SO... apart from the size issue, sloppy first-time stranding, the flower I forgot to knit in the palm chart of the right mitten, the wrong thumb chart I used on the left mitten, and forgetting to embroider the bird details all-together? Totally perfect mittens.