26 February 2006
When I say I'm a gonna do something, then I'm a gonna do it. I got all of about 4 or 5 hours sleep - partly because I wanted to get these mittens finished and partly because the sun bouncing off the snow is making the house veeeeerrrry bright - but I got up and knocked out the last tiny bit of the last thumb, just so's I could finally take a pic of these puppies.
They are so comfy, and I am so pleased with them. I would be wearing them right now if I could still type with them on. And the best part is that I didn't kill my wrists in the process of making them. This is no small thing, as this time last year I was in quite a bit of pain and not able to knit at all after my holiday knitting. Since that time, however, I have learned to knit more loosely (using smaller needles to help maintain gauge), and I no longer use straight needles, as circulars place less strain on my wrists.
Anyway, a little bit about the yarns used in these mittens: The inner layer is Alpaca With A Twist's Baby Twist yarn (disclaimer: David is a design consultant for this company, so I won't say I'm totally unbiased, but I do know that it sells like nobody's business). It's 100% baby alpaca DK weight, so very soft stuff and very nice to work with. The outer layer is yarn that, as I mentioned before, I found at Rhinebeck. I did some poking around because I couldn't remember the vendor's name and was able to determine that I bought it from Stonesthrow Farm. It doesn't appear that she has a website, but there is some info on the farm here.
At any rate, she had the booth next to ours, but we were so busy that I didn't have a chance to wander over until the end of the festival, when everyone was taking down their booths. She still had a basket of handspun yarns on a table that hadn't been put away, and I found two hanks of this yarn. The wool came from two of her sheep - border leicester/blueface leicester crosses who are half sisters, one brown and one white. The white wool she dyed a really deep, bright red. The red glimmers and glows and just has an incredible luster, and the brown just helps to bring it down to earth and anchor it perfectly. Since it's handspun, it has thick and thin areas, and the wool is just scrunchy and has a great handfeel. It's just so wonderful that I couldn't believe that nobody had bought it and knew there was no way I could go home without it. I also knew that it was going to be made into something special just....for....ME.
Best of luck to all the olympic knitters out there. Only three hours to go!