Adults who wear mittens have to endure a fair amount of teasing. I don’t know exactly what the socially acceptable age cutoff for mittens is, but I feel like it is as young as 10. And this is unfair. Mittens keep your hands so toasty. And the excuse that you need to be able to use your fingers doesn’t hold up. We take our gloves off anyway. Most cellphones have touch screens that require bare hands. Knit or leather gloves don’t have the grip of human hands so you’re still limited in what you can do. Gloves thinly knit and form-fitting enough to not make doing things awkward don’t keep the hands warm. So I maintain that it just as easy to pop off a mitten to text your friend as it is a glove. I love mittens and will defend them until the sun explodes and engulfs this planet.
These thrummed mittens are my latest work of art. And I pray I never lose them because I will NEVER, EVER, EVER knit anything with thrums again. It wasn’t hard per se, although it was far from easy since nothing about thrums feels natural to me. First it is making the thrums themselves. It was boring and the roving sucked all the moisture from my hands. It felt like I was twisting and rolling steel wool. And I was never able to make them a uniform size. Some were as big around as my pinky. Others were so wispy they almost blew away. Felting was a constant fear. And then there was trying to tighten them into the cute “v” after knitting. Often one side of it would disappear or start to show friction. Every thrum row was an exercise in frustration and acceptance. I tend to knit to take myself out of my daily struggles, I don’t want new ones.
So if I wasn’t having a good time, why didn’t I stop? That’s a good question without a great answer. I think it was the challenge of something new. I’ve been knitting for 16 years. I don’t get to learn new skills all that often. And this was new. I didn’t even know that thrummed mittens were a thing until I saw them on pinterest. And there was a certain desire for the finished project. I walk a mile to and from the train to work everyday. My hands get cold in the winter. And apparently thrummed mittens were inspired by Europeans stuffing their mittens with pieces of wool to help stay warm. I love it when need creates craft. I wanted to be a part of that. And it gives me a chance to share my knitting. The mittens are big and colorful, they will get comments. And I will get a chance to talk about my knitting. That always makes me happy. A different project could’ve given me all that, but I pressed on with this one. I
bought both the yarn and the roving from my favorite yarn store The Needlepoint Joint in Ogden, UT. It is a bit of a trek abut always worth it. I didn’t really follow any kind of pattern when it came to placing the different colors of roving. I just went by feel. If I felt an area needed some purple it got some purple. And any opportunity to use teal was leapt upon.
If you’re interested in learning thrumming I found this video very helpful.
Yarn: Rowan Pure Wool Worsted
Needles: Size 6 dpn
Pattern: Thrummed Mittens by Tanis Lavallee