I have a favorite pair of mittens that I made thirteen years ago now. I know precisely how many years ago it was because I made them during a winter when I was doing lots and lots of neighborhood walking with another Mama with our babies* practically zipped up inside our jackets, in their slings. We would walk....and walk and walk, talking all the while as we both - new to the Mama gig - tried to sort out exactly what we were doing - in cloth diapers, in slings, in breastfeeding, in our days with a tiny person attached to us all day and all night long. That little baby boy of mine turns thirteen this week, and those mittens are still going strong, and still my favorite. For the life of me, and for all the searching online, I can't find the original pattern. But it doesn't matter anyway, because with my knitting so new at the time, and my complete lack of knowledge about gauge as it was (diving in seemed like the best way to start), I'm sure it was just dumb luck that they ended up as they did. I can't even remember if they were actually supposed to be felted, or if they just "ended up" that way. Hmn.
Anyway. (Forgive a sentimental Mama on the eve of her firstborn becoming a teen.) I love those mittens...and wanted another pair somewhat similar. With a trusty pattern at my side (Family Mittens by Carrie Hoge, from Taproot Issue 3::RETREAT!), I grabbed an unmarked skein of un dyed bulky yarn from my stash and got to to work. I decided to make them on the bigger side, in the hopes that I'd be able to felt them just a bit to be extra cozy. At the last minute, before felting, I decided to throw those mittens into the dye pot. Why not? White mittens are fun, but, my goodness, January and February are sometimes in need of a pop of color.
And a pop of color, I got! They're so yellow! Just two hot soaks in the wash later, they felted a wee bit - just enough to shrink down to the size I want, and hold the fibers close together nicely, keeping my fingers extra warm. So good. I'm so pleased.
(*Speaking of first time Mamas - anyone care to place a wager on Cinnamon there? I think she's looking a little round....oh, but I'm not certain! We had a chat, she and I, and I don't think she knows either. Hmn. Time will tell. Soon.)