As I browsed the knitting books at the book store looking for inspiration I found these mittens in a book titled Knitting By Design. It was instant love. I wanted them.
I bought the book and immediately bought yarn for them. I have never made mittens before but I've decided that each new knitting project I start needs to teach me a new skill and advance my knowledge in knitting. With only one new skill each time I can concentrate but not get overwhelmed. Slow and steady my friends!
The new skill here were using double pointed needles and attaching a thumb gusset. After completing these mittens, those two things were quite simple but I ADORE the result. LOVE LOVE LOVE.
I made only one flaw in the design. The pattern has 4 rows. On my first mitten I forgot what row I was on so took a guess. It was wrong. So now I have one row on the inside of my left mitten that skips the pattern. That is ok - imperfections help prove they are self-made.
The wool is Berroco Ultra Alpaca (50% wool/50% Alpaca) in Eggshell and Beet Root. It knits magnificently but after wearing them for two days they have become very fuzzy which I don't mind at all because THEY ARE SO WARM! but means that photos don't turn out great. Just think of how toasty my little fingers now are!
Another one of my makes is the gigantic cowl that I am wearing. Burnt orange hand dyed wool. It is scratchy and squishy and my favourite thing. It certainly blocks the -30C winds blowing across Canada currently. Baby it's COLD outside (Not not while wearing all my WOOL!)
Now lets talk about this book: Knitting by Design. It is so beautiful. The patterns are all simple ones so this book is great for beginner knitters. Each pattern is easy to follow with detailed instructions and has a few photos of the pattern as well as snippets of Design Inspiration, Yarn&Stitch, and Trial&Error. It gives you insight into the design process which is a nice change from books that only provide the pattern.
This book feels like a lifestyle knitting book. The style of the book is whimsical and the patterns fun. There are hand drawings and vibrant colours. All things I thoroughly adore.
I'm so happy I bought this book. These mittens turned out near perfect and I look forward to making my next item from their patterns!
The only detail I will change for the next pair is starting the Contrast Colour earlier so there is more of it. The pattern called for 3 more sets of the pattern but that would make them too long for my hands so I made it shorter. But I didn't realize this until I was there. I suppose trying them on while making them would of helped eh? Things to remember for my next pair.
Have you seen this book? What are your opinions?
Ps. I LOVE MY FIRST MITTENS!