Tag Archives: mittens

Special Mittens

Late last year I was asked to make a special pair of mittens.  A mom had just purchased a headband for her daughter who has cerebral palsy.  The young lady’s hands are clenched into fists due to the disease.  This makes the thumbs on mittens stick out oddly and makes gloves out of the question.  So we chatted for a short time and came up with a way to make mittens that would fit these special hands.

Once my old wash machine was installed just for the purpose of felting, I was ready to give our idea a try.

felting in action

Felting in action

Using my sock yarn of 95% alpaca / 5% nylon and following my usual mitten pattern, I knit an extra long cuff.  I skipped the shaping for a thumb, and knit fewer rows for the hand.  Overall, the length of the mitten is about the same as my regular mittens.  After sewing the seam, I gave the mittens a big swish in the wash machine to felt them slightly.  Once dry, they’ll be ready for delivery!

completed mittens

Mittens complete

The felting will make them warmer.  I think there is still enough of this winter left that these mittens will get plenty use.  I sure hope so.

I enjoyed the challenge of adapting a familiar pattern for a special purpose.



A few more orders complete

A while back I finished a hat with a deer hunting deadline.  Since then, I’ve been working on knocking out a few more orders.  This scarf is complete.

blue knit scarf

Extra wide and long

It is 6 1/4 inches wide and about 62 inches long.  Made from 100% alpaca sportweight yarn I dyed

2 pair of felted mittens

Felted mittens

These are for 2 different orders.  Also made from yarn I dyed, the purple pair have an extra 6 rows knit in the hand.  They are currently drying and will be ready for delivery or pick up soon. 

Tomorrow I will be at the St Michael / Albertville Women of Today Craft Show.  If you are out and about, stop by and get a head start on your shopping list!  Only 2 shows left after this one. 


The Packing Challenge

I’ve been staging things to go to Shepherd’s Harvest for the last couple weeks.  But yesterday, I had to get serious and try to fit it all into our car. 

tote bins


I have 5 tote bins – the clear one in front is just yarn! The others have hats, mittens, socks, shawls and lots of other alpaca goodies for sale. The box in back has my rugs and place mats/stadium seats.  



I have 7 fleeces and 2 bags of roving, a box of felting kits, and a small tote bin of wrist warmers.


Display racks

 I’m also bringing my garment rack and my yarn rack.  Fortunately, these come apart.  By last night, all this was stuffed into the car!  With the front passenger seat reserved for my suitcase, backpack, knitting project bag and one rack I forgot about yesterday. 

Thanks to Twisted Suri Alpaca Ranch for bringing the grid-wall and tables for both our booths! 

Baby news – nothing yet, but my husband could experience his first alpaca birth without me this weekend.

Hang no more

I know I left you hanging with the mitten situation.  To refresh your memory, I had finished dyeing with purple yarn.   I had yarn to make mittens in 6 colors. 

mittens in a circle

Before felting

Here they are!   Sixteen pair of mittens, knit and ready for the hot water treatment!

mittens in a circle

After felting

After being felted, they are all about one inch shorter, fuzzier and not quite as intense in color.  The color does fade a wee bit – after all it is super hot water and strong detergent (even a bit of dish soap!) – but mostly the texture of the knitting gets softened and somehow that makes the color more subtle.   I’m very happy to have these all done!  I hope they all find cold hands to keep warm by next winter! 


An end to dyeing

Mitten production continues.

orange mittens

Orange mittens

Two pair of orange mittens are knit.  The third ball of orange yarn is waiting to become a hunting hat. 

green yarn

Green yarn

The green yarn has been wound into balls to be knit soon.  The ball on the left was the end of the cone.  There should be a matching headband for that pair of mittens.

purple dye pot

Purple dye pot

And there is purple in the dye pot.  A big contrast here between the first skein in the last!  Should be a variety for the mittens.  This is my last batch of yarn to dye for mittens.  You won’t have to look at them until they are all felted.  Seaming is progressing slowly.

In felting news:

gray roving

Carded fiber

I’ve been felting almost daily on the soap for All Things Herbal.  They wanted some black felting, so as I transitioned from black back to white on my carder, I just let the colors mix.  I got this amazing batt of gray.  I’m inspired to card some white and black together and hand spin some yarn later.  It’s been a long time since I’ve done any spinning.  I think I’m feeling the pull of my wheel.

I also visited my space at Shepherd’s Choice


Yarn for sale

I added 15 skeins of my 100% alpaca yarn that I dyed myself.  There are a couple bulky skeins, but mostly sport weight.  If you get a chance, stop in and check out the Fiber Co-op in the Loft.  I’ll be adding more things in anticipation for the Shop Hop.  Yes, we are joining the Shop Hop fun.  Grab your friends and come visit us.

Dyeing o’ the green!

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day, everyone. 


Yellow mittens

The balls of yellow yarn are now mittens.  In need of seams, but mittens none-the-less.

orange yarn

Balls of orange yarn

And a steaming pot of orange dye has become balls of orange yarn.  The ball on the far right will become a hat for a hunter I met at my last show.  The middle skein had a few knots, so it became multiple balls which will become a pair of mittens as will the ball on the left. 

green yarn

Drying green yarn

And in honor of Saint Patrick, here is my green yarn on the drying rack.  Soon to be 3 pair of green mittens.  This little production line is working pretty good, except that there is a bit of bottleneck at the point of sewing the seams.  This crazy beautiful weather has me spending time outside doing ‘spring things’.  No complaints. 

Rollin’ along

Remember those 3 red balls of yarn?



Now, 3 pair of red mittens.  Still need sewing, but progress was made.  And that yellow dye bath?

balls of yarn

Yellow yarn

It is in the queue to be knit into mittens.  Orange is in the dye pot now!

felted soap

Felted Soap

This is my second batch of felted soap.   Two more felting sessions and the lavender scented soap will be done.

Peach scarf

Scarf for charity

This is my latest scarf made with acrylic yarn.  I’m really loving this pattern.  I didn’t steam it and the edges lay really flat.

close up of scarf

Scarf pattern

And the stitch pattern is pretty, too.  The reverse side is almost a mirror image.  Very nice together.  Tomorrow, I’m going to try this pattern 3 wide to see how it works for a wrap.  The scarf is a little over 6 inches wide.  Will 18 inches be wide enough for a wrap?  First acrylic, then if all goes well, I’ll have an alpaca wrap pretty soon! 

Must be the spring-like weather!  It is scaring me into super speed mode as I feel like festivals and markets are just around the corner.   Oh Yikes!  Seven weeks until Shepherd’s Harvest