One more knitted Christmas gift in the can! I love these big chunky mittens because I can literally sit down and have them finished in no time at all. I have a few more pairs of these to go before the season is through. These also make wonderful teacher gifts because they are relatively inexpensive, they are heartfelt, and they are perfect for recess duty in the dead of winter. The felted balls are from www.ornamentea.com (thanks to Betz White for this site-it is fabulous). I also ordered larger felted balls, felted rings, and felted flowers. These all can be used for a quick embellishment for any knitted project-it's a great find.
I am providing the pattern below so you can whip out some mittens of your own for family and friends. I wrote it up quickly, so let me know if you find any errors. I can finish a pair in about 45 minutes from start to finish. I know I am speedy, but I used to teach these to very new beginners and they could finish one mitten in an hour (I am talking about knitters who didn't even know how to purl when they sat down). So with any amount of knitting experience these will be fast for you, too.
You can vary the length of the cuff (some like it shorter or longer) and you can always add length to the thumb or hand if need be, try them on as you go. I had students do this who were knitting these mittens for their husbands with larger hands. Watch the yardage when adding length so you don't run out of yarn, if you make them much longer you may want to pick up an extra ball.
I also know someone at my old shop who knitted this pattern using worsted weight yarn and US size 7 needles and they were the perfect young child-size mitten. I am not sure about the sizing on those, but they would be worth a try if you are so inclined.
What about a mitten ornament using a dk, sport or fingering weight yarn? Just add a crocheted chain stitch loop for hanging. It could happen and it could be cute!
1 ball Rowan Big Wool (I used Tricky #030 for the mittens above)
US size 15 needles (I used 24-inch circular needles, Addi Turbo)
2 balls Tahki Baby
US size 13 needles
Felted balls (optional)
Sewing needle and thread (optional)
Size: Average-size adult, large child or teen
Gauge: 8 ½ sts to 4 inches
Cast on 22 sts. Begin with a knit row, continue in stockinette stitch for the entire mitten.
Shape for thumb:
Next row: k15 and stop. Cast on 5 sts using the backward loop method, and turn.
**Next row: Purl the 5 cast on sts, p5 more (10 sts total for thumb) and turn.
Work 6 more rows on these 10 sts only. End with a purl row.
Next row: (p2tog) repeat across the row (4 sts remain).
Cut the yarn leaving about a 6-inch end, and place on a yarn needle. Thread through the remaining 4 sts. Pull up tight and join thumb seam, using a mattress stitch or whip stitch.
Next row: Decrease 2 sts at base of thumb while purling across the row. (20 sts remain)
Work a further 14 rows straight on these 20 sts, ending with a purl row.
Decrease for the top of the mitten as follows:
Row 1: (k3, k2 tog) repeat across the row (16 sts remain).
Row 2: purl
Row 3: (k2, k2 tog) repeat across the row (12 sts remain).
Row 4: purl
Row 5: (k2tog) repeat across the row (6 sts remain).
Cut the yarn leaving about an 8-inch end, and place on a yarn needle. Thread through the remaining 6 sts. Pull up tight and join side seam using the mattress or whip stitch (see the note above about seaming).
Work the same as for the right mitten to *.
Shape for thumb:
Next row: k10 and stop. Cast on 5 sts using the backward loop method and turn.
Complete the same as for the right mitten from **.
Turn up the cuff and sew on felted balls around the edge with a sewing needle and thread.