I guess I am on a roll this week with publishing patterns! Up next is my newest new design, the Modicum Mitts!
I was recently inspired by the Madelinetosh Tea Cake samplers at Jimmy Beans Wool, and almost immediately the idea of the Modicum Mitts jumped into my head. Each sampler has 12 mini skeins (20 yards each) of Tosh Merino Light in colors that coordinate, but still have a lot of tonal variability. I decided to create a pair of fingerless mitts that are based on simple stripes but with just a bit of stranded colorwork thrown in to give them some interest. I mean, let's face it, stockinette stripes can be pretty boring so this will at least keep you looking forward to getting to the next color in the sequence! I really loved how the design was coming out so I decided not to interrupt it and switch to ribbing at the end and instead used an i-cord bind off to keep the edge from rolling.
These mitts are super simple and really rely on the simple colorwork to make them interesting. When I was choosing what order to knit the colors in, I laid out all 12 of the skeins on my kitchen table and then arranged them in an order that I was happy with and also so none of the too similar colors were next to each other. Then, I took a black and white photo (you can do this with a smart phone and then apply a black and white filter in a photo app like Instagram) to better see that value of the colors. As you can see in the photo below I had a few colors next too each other that were too close in value so I spread those out. Once I finalized the color sequence I strung all the skeins onto a piece of waste yarn to help maintain the order while knitting and then the knitting could begin!
As I am sure you can guess, there are somewhere around a 14 billion ends to weave in (No, of course I am not exaggerating that number. It sure felt like 14 billion ends...). I decided to take a short cut and simply tie them together with square knots. After all, it's on the inside of the mitt so who other than me (and every other knitter who picks them up, and you guys won't tell, right?) is going to see all of the ends? Well, that's what I did, and I would say if you are using superwash yarn (which Tosh Merino Light is), DON'T do this under any circumstances. Unless of course you like holes in your knitting! I really thought the knots would hold just fine, but superwash yarn is just too slippery and they started coming out within hours of tying the final knot. I was able to reinforce them and stop them from unraveling with some thread, but this is not a great solution so I encourage you all to just take the time to weave in the ends if you are using a superwash yarn.
One last note, I knit these two at a time, using magic loop. If you are worried about yardage you may want to do this to ensure that your mitts come out the same. Of course if you are a little more free-form with your knitting then don't worry about making them exactly the same (my OCD heart simply won't let me do that, but I encourage you to follow your own heart in this matter!).
These mitts are a great way to use up the leftover bits of sock yarn that you have floating around your craft room! I know it's hard to throw those away and now you have a use for them! If you purchase a Madelinetosh Tea Cake Sampler from Jimmy Beans Wool (pictured in Berry Blackcurrant, but there are 5 other gorgeous colors to choose from) you will receive this pattern free! Or, you can purchase it from Ravelry here.