I first saw the Fiddlehead Mitten when my friend Suzanne was knitting a pair in red and white to give as a gift. It was love at first sight! I just had to knit a pair! The colors she was using immediately made me think of my niece, Claire, who is away at a college where the school colors are red and white. I knew that the lined mitten would be toasty warm for her while she was trekking across campus during the dead of winter.
I quickly set off to make her a pair for Christmas. Suzanne is a big proponent of the magic loop method of knitting so I decided that learning magic loop needed to be first on my list of priorities. I picked up the book The Magic Loop by Bev Galeskas with Sarah Hauschka quickly learned the basics of using one 40” circular needle to knit in the round. This worked beautifully as one side of the mitten is knit and then it is turned over and knit across the other side. There were no double-pointed needles getting in my way and I was able to see the pattern laid out flat before me. I had read charts before but reading them while changing colors was a little bit different. I had just recently tried my hand at two-color stranded knitting on a different pair of mittens and was able to knit continental with one color in my left hand while “throwing” with my right. Utilizing all of these skills at one time was really exciting and it was thrilling to watch it all come together in such an amazing finished product.
I did finish Claire’s mittens in time for Christmas Eve but I didn’t get the lining completed before I gave them to her. She opened them and was excited to have such a cozy mitten. I put them back on the needles and picked up the stitches for the mitten lining. I decided to knit both of the linings together using the Magic Loop method. I spent all of Christmas Day happily finishing the lining so she could take them back with her to college.
I was so excited about the mitten process and the finished product, I decided to knit a pair for myself in blue and green to match my winter coat. I also decided that I wanted to share these beautiful mittens with others, so I will be teaching a class (three evening sessions March 2nd, 9th, and 23rd) on how to knit them. Some of you might be ready to learn one or more of the techniques described while others might just be excited to try all of these techniques together like I was. Whatever your desire, I hope you will come along with me on my mitten adventure!
See the Knit’n from the Heart class schedule at http://www.heartknits.com/schedule.html.