Jobo Designs

Letting the crafty creative juices flow. Knitting, spinning, crafting, dyeing, rabbits, sheep and more!

21. January 2015 15:59
by Jobo
2 Comments

Colorwork... Just one more Row!

21. January 2015 15:59 by Jobo | 2 Comments

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Yarn:

Knit Picks Chroma in Prism and Black (Worsted)

 

Pattern: 

Started with Drops Rainbow Mittens 143-32... and branched out from there

 

After a few cuff modifications... I am off to the races on these lovely little colorwork mittens for a friend. 

I had forgotten just how much I enjoy the process and technique with knitting stranded designs.  After much practice a few years ago, I learned how to do the Philospher's Wool technique of holding one yarn in each hand.  Basically this means you "pick" with one hand and "throw" with the other.  I like to hold the color I want to be dominant in my left hand (continental style) and the other color gets held in my right hand and worked like my usual style of knitting allows.  I have never been good at knitting continental style, and I don't think I could work a purl stitch that way to save my soul... but for colorwork it just makes sense to me.  Go figure. 

the plan is for these mittens to run the whole spectrum of color - starting with pale green, through yellow, orange, red, pink, purple, blue and back to green.  I still haven't decided what should be done with the thumb.  I'll figure that out when the time comes.

Originally I had considered making a lining to double the warmth... but the nice tight gauge means that the fabric is already really thick.  These puppies are going to be bulletproof even without any lining I think.  I might try some alternate lining method... maybe weaving some strands of Angora inside or something after the fact. 

More photos coming soon!

24. October 2014 09:00
by Jobo
0 Comments

Uncle Bob's Lined Mittens

24. October 2014 09:00 by Jobo | 0 Comments

A few months ago... at an extended family dinner... Uncle Bob asked me:  "What kind of yarn makes the Best, Warmest Mittens?"  Well... ask the obsessed wool lady a loaded question will ya? I know he was expecting me to talk his ear off, so away I went!

He was looking for a better hand warming solution. He had gone out and purchased fancy leather gloves, and other types of mittens only to be disappointed with hands that were still chilly and stiff after his 15 minute walk to work.  He had thought that by buying a supposedly "nice" pair that he would have warm hands. 

We live in Eastern Canada - translation:  It snows here. A lot. There is often a wind chill factor drawing the "feels-like" temperature well below freezing. 

I'm not surprised that leather gloves wouldn't do the job properly. Even with a lining, without the safety-in-numbers of the fingers to keep each other warm, leather just isn't a great insulator for warmth. It might keep the wind or moisture out, but not ideal for the chilliest of days. Maybe as driving gloves, when you're in your car?

The Yarn:

So... enter the world of Wool.  Warm, even when wet, and versatile - if you want warm mittens you probably want wool.  After measuring Uncle Bob's hands, we went right to talking about what kind of wool would be best to keep his digits toasty. I suggested maybe a straightforward superwash wool outer shell, with a soft and fluffy layer inside for a lining to trap the warm air nice and close to the skin.  We decided to go with Knit Picks yarns, because they have great reasonably priced products, in lots of appealing colors, and the quality is excellent value.

- Outer Shell: Knit Picks Swish Worsted - 100% Superwash Wool in Cobblestone Heather

- The Lining: Knit Picks Reverie - 80% Baby Alpaca/20% Acrylic in Wine.

The finished mittens will need to be hand-washed because of the baby alpaca lining, but overall should be easy to wear and simple to rinse and lie flat to dry if they get soiled.

The Design:

- working from Uncle Bob's measurements, I set off to create the perfect pair of mittens!  I've made (no joke) probably 50 pairs of mittens in various sizes over the years.  I decided to just wing it and not bother looking for a pattern.  Mittens are my thing...

- He wanted nice long cuffs to tuck into his jacket sleeves. I decided to do a bit of an offset alternating cabled rib, just to make them look unique. It's basically glorified 2x2 rib... comfortable, stretchy and resilient.

- The outer shell of the mitten was knit in plain stockinette - simple and smooth looking.  I like to Kitchener the tops of my mittens closed to avoid the pointy look.

- The gauge of the lining yarn / needle combo was a bit different from the outer shell... resulting in the need to change stitch counts and rework the increases a bit. The result though, was a nice and lofty feeling lining that fits just perfectly inside the shell.  I carefully sewed the lining in, using small invisible stitches.  You'd never know from looking at the outside that it's in there!

- The final result is a delightful 2-layered approach to the Maritime winter season.  The layers are thin enough to not feel clumsy or awkward, but you can feel that warm difference moments after you put your hands inside.  That baby alpaca warms almost instantly, and the wool keeps that warmth inside.  I'd bet even after a snowball fight, when the outer shell gets a little damp - these suckers will still be toasty warm and comfortable on the inside!

Uncle Bob's Reaction: "Do they come with a Mitten String?  If I lose these, my wife is going to kill me!" (Aunt Christine was in the corner giggling!)

 

30. August 2012 08:48
by Jobo
0 Comments

Handspun Alpaca Mittens for Romy.

30. August 2012 08:48 by Jobo | 0 Comments

Years ago when I started spinning. I bought a 2 ounce braid of gold/yellow/red alpaca fiber from Fleece Artist.  I figured since I was just learning, it was ok to buy some small braids and just learn on them.  The finished yarn reminds me a bit of a roll of Life Savers candy. or maybe a bowl of Froot Loops?

 

I spun a small skein of Navajo 3-ply yarn and gave it to my Mom to knit something with.

 

mittens alpaca 2

 

Well, she decided to make a little pair of mittens and hold onto them until someday when a little grandkid came along. well BINGO! There IS a cute little grandkid, and now she is going to have warm little fingers all winter. They are still a little bit too big, but that's ok.

 

They're woolly and warm, and knit by her Grandma, and that's all that matters Smile

 

mittens alpaca (1)

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