Saturday, December 9, 2023

Winter knits

Hello, basket of warm winter accessories! Some of these are quick enough for last minute presents if you're in need of some, but I'm mostly showing them for fun.

The weather is still mildish here but I am definitely reaching for fingerless mitts at minimum before I go outside. And since I am finally at the finishing stages of my 12-month decluttering odyssey (read: making the jumble of hats and scarves pretty) I thought you'd like to check out what's in my regular rotation.

These mitts didn't see much action last winter, mostly because I couldn't find them, but they are my prized possession, the knit I would take with me if I could only have one project.


They are twined with sock-weight yarn, using a pattern from Linda Ligon's Homespun, Handknit (a must have book, incidentally) by the brilliant Carol Rhoades - Two End Mittens. They came out perfectly. Check out this beautiful cuff:

The yarn was harvested from goats and sheep living on neighbouring farms, and hand-dyed by my very talented friend Sylvia who no longer sells yarn. Like I said: a treasure. They are warm, but not for really frigid days. In that scenario I wear the second mitts I made from this pattern using my own heavier handspun yarn.

I'm also keeping this shawl out for use when I'm wearing a dressier coat. You may recognize it from my earlier blog banner... the pattern is Sugared Violets by Rose Beck, available at Ravelry and worth every penny of the pattern cost.

I don't always want a hat so my Hatcowl is my other option for a black coat. My design for this, free on the linked pattern page, is so handy. Tie the drawstring tight and you have a great slouchy hat. Loose, it's a perfect neckwarmer. I'm making another now in a different stripe to wear with my red puffer coat, but we know what I'm like these days... slow enough to be debuting it two years out.

Despite being active on Instagram now, for books, I sometimes stumble across my name linked to my various knitting patterns. It can feel a bit weird! But the other day I spotted pictures of a very lovely version of my Shelter Valley Cowl and that was just nice. I knit this one with a silk blend Trish picked up for me as a special gift, taking it as many rounds as I could get before the skein ran out. It's warm and soft and I often wear it around the house if I'm a little chilly.

Okay here's a super quick beanie - my Slice of Life hat. Make it longer than the pattern calls for if you want some flop on top. This one is succinct if you pull it down tight. I like it with a coat that zips up high and warm so I don't need a scarf, for a trim look.

I never published the pattern for my fingerless mitts, but I love all the variations I made of them and wear them a ton. This one in light grey yarn from Viola has a lace panel I didn't get quite right in relation to the thumb opening, oops:

And these are my blue pairs, for less dressy days when I'm out in jeans.

If it's really cold I wear the handspun-by-me pair on the left, using the excellent Ferryboat Mitts pattern from Churchmouse Yarns and Teas. Otherwise I wear my own design on the right, without the lace panel and again in sock yarn from Viola. Isn't Emily brilliant with colours?

My favourite fun pair in my unpublished design is this one in leftover Vesper sock yarn from Knitterly Things. If you've been here a while, you know how much I love stripes!

And that is enough from me. My apologies for posting so late in the day. Hey, it's still Saturday, right? I'll leave you with the basket looking a lot less tidy than when we started, and look forward to seeing you next week. As always I'm so pleased you chose to spend a little time with me.

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