Here’s a little side-by-side photo fun. On the left is a picture I took yesterday, on Easter. On the right is a picture I took this morning, the day after Easter.
On the downside: that’s right, it’s still snowing! In April!
On the upside, it’s snowing in April (even though it’s melting really fast)! So it’s still knitting weather, which is a perfect introduction to my newest knitting pattern, the Fika Mitts:
(Ok, admit it, you love the mitts but you want a closer look at that maple donut. I do too.)
The inspiration for these mitts was the yarn itself. Perusing the Knit Picks website recently, I came across a new-to-me yarn called Paragon. The colors in the palette were so pretty that I felt inspired to design a bit of stranded colorwork. So what better than a quick pair of fingerless mitts with a classic motif?
Knit Picks Paragon yarn is a sportweight yarn made from a blend of merino, silk, and alpaca fibers. The merino and alpaca ensure that the yarn is very soft to knit with and comfortable to wear, while the silk content gives the yarn a rich depth of color. In the mitts you see here, I chose a glowing teal (“Kenai”) as the main color and accented it with the contrasting colors of white and a burnished yellow (“Turmeric”).
Once you click on the link above, I know that you’ll find a unique combination of Paragon colors that you love, but if you want to do a bit of stashbusting, this is a great project for that, too. All of the sizes in the pattern require less than 150 yards for the main color and 20 yards or less of each of the contrasting colors!
Not content, of course, to leave well enough alone with the colorwork motif on the hand, I added a few welted bands of color at the lower cuff because (a) I just liked the combination of colors that much; and (b) the bands reminded me a bit of bracelets around the wrist!
As far as the pattern itself goes, the mitts are knit in the round from the cuff upwards. The cuff is worked in Fisherman Rib, and working into the row below gives the cuff a wonderful, cushy feeling. The thumb gusset is worked simultaneously with the hand. The thumb stitches are held while the colorwork on the hand is completed and then the thumb is finished. Definitely a doable project for an adventurous beginner or anyone with additional experience beyond that.
The pattern includes two different adult sizes. Since the mitts are intended to fit more loosely around the wrist and more snugly around the hand, knitters should choose size where the finished knuckle circumference is smaller than their actual knuckle circumference.
Finally, you might be wondering about the name of this design. Those of you who know me know that I’m always game for a (nearly boiling) cup of coffee and something sweet to go with it (*cough* MAPLE DONUT *cough*). In Swedish culture, a “fika” is a coffee break, an opportunity (however brief) to relax with friends and family and enjoy a sweet treat. These mitts were inspired by that philosophy, by embracing knitting as a way to relax with a quick and colorful project in the middle of your daily routine.
As Winter winds down and Spring arrives (eventually), happy knitting everyone!