My current work in progress:

Seaforth designed by Alice Starmore, knit in British Breeds 5-ply Guernsey Wool on US 3 needles.



Here are the Millefiore mittens.

Millefiore Mittens 020408

Millefiore Mittens 020408

As you can see, I did not repeat the error on the second mitten. And here they are, palm side up.

Millefiore Mitten Palms 020408

Millefiore Mitten Palms 020408

Blurry! Sorry!

Charlotte asked:

Why does this style of mitten have a different pattern on the palm from the back of the hand? Is this traditional? Is there a functional reason for it?

I know it is traditional for Scandinavian mittens to have an all-over pattern on the palm. Functional? Well, I dunno about that. But if you have a complex pattern on the back of the hand and were to repeat it on the palm, you’d have to break up the pattern when you worked the thumb gusset, and I think that would detract from the overall look of the mitten.

And NewJerseyLaura commented:

Noticed back to dp needles on the thumb. Any reason why you choose not to make 1 thumb on 2 circs?

Yep. A few mittens ago, I started doing a thumb on 2 circs but very quickly switched to dpns. The rigid needle part of the circular is too long to comfortable knit a small number of stitches — they really need to be divided over three or four needles. Try it and you’ll see what I mean!

Thank you for welcoming MacDougal — he seems to be enjoying his new home. 😉 I got him to recognize and print to a printer over my wireless network tonight so I’m pretty chuffed. While I’m not planning on getting rid of my Windows PCs anytime soon, I am happy to be playing with a different OS. I’ve been a die-hard PC user forever, but can certainly see the up-side to the Mac environment. Just call me flexible.

Lucy sez:

Lucy 020408

Lucy 020408

“I’m flexible too!”

And here, for the sake of posterity, my odometer reading this afternoon:

Odometer 020408

Odometer 020408

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a new computer to play with . . .


  1. Ohhhh nooooooooo !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    No links, therefore I cannot see any of these super-duper photos! luv.m.

  2. I think having the same pattern on mittens, front and back, might make you dizzy. I love how these new ones turned out!

  3. Yes, Ms Lucy you certainly are flexible:-) Your mittens turned out Lovely

  4. I always thought the pattern on the palm was for (1) extra warmth and (2) extra wear. The two layers and frequently-changing colors give the fabric more stability, but the visual pattern is simpler because it won’t be seen as much and, the more-frequent the color changes, the tougher the finished fabric will be. Which is helpful on the palm!

  5. The Millefiore Mittens are my favorite of your recent mittens. They have a very classic look & the yarn & pattern are a perfect match.

    Lucy’s pic is cute as usual. She looks like either she’s glaring at something or she’s sleeping with her eyes open.

  6. Lucy is so adorable, and your love for her is one of the things that make you adorable too!

  7. Alice in Richmond says:

    Oh Lucy! Don’t let MacDougal take over…put together a plot now!

  8. Much better!!!!!!!!!!

    Love those M.F. mittens!! And Lucy is just 2,2,2,2,2,2, adorable and sweet! I saved that photo as future wallpaper.

    My odometer reads: 34,357… that’s because in SoCal there really ain’t no such thing as mass transit!

    Thanks 4 the links! 🙂 luv.m.

  9. ellen in indy says:

    i’m jealous, wendy. my ’99 van’s odo reads about 127k. mass transit is practically as nonexistent here as in maryo’s socal.

    the mittens are gorgeous, and so is miss lucy.

  10. Lucy was actually lying there with her paws tucked under her only because she felt so secure with both her servants there ready to attend to her every whim.

  11. The odometer reading is closer to the one on my Vespa than it is to most of our cars. We get high mileage here cause everything is at least 15 miles one way and our mass transit stinks.

  12. anne marie in philly says:

    we know how flexible you are, lucy. we remember your dancing video!

    “Lucy was actually lying there with her paws tucked under her only because she felt so secure with both her servants there ready to attend to her every whim.” steven and meredith applaud lucy for taking this stance and wish their mommy and daddy would do the same.

  13. Debra in NC says:

    Your mittens are really beautiful! I could only wish that it got cold enough here for such things. Oh, btw, my 96′ Isuzu Rodeo has 173k on it……it’s been from the east coast to CA and back…….a few times! LOL!

    Lucy’s eyes are gorgeous in today’s pic. She’s such a special soul.

  14. Another pair of beautiful mittens! But how will you knit on a Mac? 😉 Graphics all the way! Have fun with your new toy!

  15. I love those mittens. Your colorwork tension is soooo nice. Mine is improving, and I’ve done enough to know to just keep practicing, but still…..

    Congrats on the Mac! I’m a Mac snob, but then, I’ve been using Macs since 1984 (a friend with me at MIT bought a newly released one with the student discount), and PCs since before that, as well as TOPS-20, Unix, Vaxen, windows and DOS (ICK!). So my snobbery is based on much information ;-). Our macs aren’t perfect, but there is rarely something wrong with either a computer or wireless that an occasional resetting/rebooting won’t fix. Our PC, on the other hand, simply won’t cooperate reliably without constant babying! Perhaps it’s jealous, living in a house with 7 macs 😉

  16. NewJerseyLaura says:

    Thanks for the dp tip! I’m proud to have made it to blog-mention :). And you successfully made it to wireless printer! And the Giants win the Superbowl! It’s a great week. Time for blue and red socks.

  17. I was interested to hear your reasoning for the dpns on the thumb. I’m a few rows from working a thumb, but have been doing the rest of the mitten on 2 circs (which is new to me).

    Welcome to the land of alternate OS’. I’m a PC girl from way back (even employed as a MS .Net developer) but I drank the Kool-aid last year and brought home my first iMac. I now have a MacBook too. If you add the new Parallels software, you can also run Windows without having to reboot. Additionally, with Coherence, you can run Windows applications side by side with MacOs apps. You have a hard time telling which OS is really hosting it. It is pretty freaky seeing MS Visual Studio running with Mac desktop visible. I’d highly recommend it especially for those apps that just don’t have a Mac alternative or to ease the transition over.

  18. Beautiful mittens. They are lovely. Nice job.

  19. that’s gotta be the cutest pic of lucy i’ve ever seen!!!

  20. Dear Wendy,

    I am a faithful reader, but almost never comment. Today I have a question…..can you recommend a good tutorial for two techniques in mitten/glove knitting that cause me problems? What is the best cast on method for the bit after you put the thumb gusset on hold? And what is the best way to pick up those cast on stitches when it is time to finish the thumb? Many thanks for any help.

    Judy A. in Houston, TX where it is almost never cold enough to wear mittens or gloves, I just like knitting them!

  21. Here in Iceland, which historically is part of Scandinavia although not geographically, we are taught as kids, when we learn to knit, that the reason for the smaller pattern in the palm is for extra strength, because of much more wear than for the top of the hand. I don´t know if that´s true or not, but to me it makes sense.
    best wishes from Iceland

  22. I’m so happy to see that your mitten thumbs have actual gussets. Those afterthought thumbs always bother me because I think they look uncomfortable (I have yet to actually knit any). I have never knit Fetching for the same reason — no gussets. When and if I knit some gorgeous colorwork mittens such as yours, they will definitely have gussets.

  23. Anna-Karin says:

    I’ve read the questions about the patterns on the mittens, same or not same on palm and hand. Like Frida said, the smaller pattern makes it stronger on the palm. I’ve looked at many pattern books for Scandinavian mittens and most of them looks like this, with different patterns and an increased thumb. There are some part, especial Gotland (Swedish island), where the mittens have the same pattern on both sides, but they also have a straight thumb, which should have the same pattern an almost be invisible.