Home > Knitting > Keeping toasty, and mittens

Keeping toasty, and mittens

January 23rd, 2008

The other evening, the Man commented about how nice and warm my sewing room/office (should I call it my studio?) was, even in the wee hours of the morning when he was getting ready for work, and how nice it would be to sleep in there. Our room is cold at night, and even wearing our warmest jammies, thickest socks, sweaters, under three quilts, and with the thermostat cranked up to 78 degrees, we freeze our toes off. Sleeping in the studio seemed like a smart idea. We don’t have a normal bed, just a Japanese-style futon, so it was no big deal to shift things around.

The first night we lumped all of our blankets in there, and kept the thermostat where it was. I had to get up twice in the night to turn the heat down. Last night we started with only one quilt, and I put the thermostat at 71 degrees. It was perfect! I was worried that the kids room would be too cold, but I checked on them around 3 AM and they were as toasty as can be. Yay! This will probably save us about $50/month on our electric bill. Double yay!

yarn on the swift

(Above, Olga with my Ashford yarn swift. On the floor is our futon.)

Now laying in bed amidst all of my crafty goodness has got to be one of the best ways to spend the wee hours of the morning (add a hot cuppa’ joe and I’m sold for life). So to milk it as long as possible before putting the bed away (it just rolls up) I decided that it really was unacceptable for my little man, the son of a KNITTER for goodness sake, to not have a pair of mittens to keep his digits toasty. And what more comfortable way to knit on a chilly winter day than by laying in bed?

Morehouse Farm Merinos book and mittens

I’ve had some merino yarn that I spun from a hand dyed roving I bought in Bisbee, Arizona, that I’ve had squirreled away in my stash for Gavin. I bought the roving while I was pregnant with him, and at the same time bought another roving with which I spun up and knit this hat for Olga this past spring. I also had one ball of Knit Picks “Wool of the Andes” which I thought would serve better than the handspun as ribbing. It’s only a little bit darker than the green in the merino. The pattern itself is about as basic as you can get, from Morehouse Farm Merino Knits. I made the smallest size.

Gavins mittens

I lost a bit of knitting time, because I had to go to the Commissary yesterday, but I finished the first mitten while dinner was in the oven (I’ll share the recipe and the picture of leftover lunch later… yum!). The picture above is at an odd angle. The mitten is actually laying in my my still-aproned lap. (Thanks, Mom, this is my new favorite apron!)

merino stitches closeup

Here’s a closeup of the fabric. It is knitting up fairly densely on 3.5mm dpns, but since I was a bit inconsistent when spinning this yarn, there are a few spots where it’s quite thin, like on one of the thumbs. I think in the future I’ll try to save my thick and thin yarn for slightly larger projects were the yarn has more of an opportunity to balance out. (Does that make sense, knitters?) I think even adult sized mitts would have enough stitches to accommodate the variance in thickness.

Finished mittens

And there they are! I finished the second mitt this morning, just before Gavin woke up. See my beautiful stitch markers? I got them from JLYarnWorks a couple years ago, and I love using them. And can you believe it, I managed to wrastle the boy to the ground to get those mitts on him, and they fit! And he kept them on! And they’re cute! I think I’ll try making an earflap hat for him with what’s left of the yarn.

Gavin wears his new mittens


  1. mamafitz
    January 23rd, 2008 at 14:06 | #1

    cute! your handspun yarn is pretty. i don’t spin (yet?), i’m afraid to learn. just what i need, ANOTHER hobby. :) i’m working on mittens for my two youngest ones now too. (psst — we lower our heat to 55 at night. 61 during the day, 64 when older kids and dh are home.)

  2. cosy
    January 24th, 2008 at 21:49 | #2

    fabulous mittens!!! i love them. fun to see your shelving unit too… although i must say yours looks way better organized than mine :)

  3. Michelle Chapin
    January 25th, 2008 at 09:17 | #3

    I love all of the things that you do for your family. I too love making things for my family. When I was looking at your stitch markers they reminded me of the beading that my daughter does. Went to google and found a great sight to make your own. The site is wormspit.com and he has a great step by step how to tutorial on beaded stitch markers. My mom teaches prisioners in Georgia how to knit and she is always looking for cute things to share with her students. You know what they say about busy hands, well she hopes anyway her efforts are not in vain. Her students seem to be real responsive. Thank you for sharing all of your ideas and encouranging me to be more creative and organized.

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