Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Yarn Chicken

Have you ever played this game with your knitting? You know the game. It's the one where you pick up a ball of yarn with no ball band so you have no idea how much is there. You decide to use said yarn anyway because it's the right weight and colour. You do this even though you aren't entirely certain you have enough of this yarn to finish the project in question.  Ever play it? I have. 
Here is a great example of how the game works. See these mittens? At this point in the knitting I'm not sure if I have enough yarn to finish the thumb. Actually when I first picked out the lone ball of brown yarn without a ballband - I wasn't sure I have enough yarn. I wasn't sure when I cast on or when I knit the cuff or even when I finished the first mitt. I really didn't know. I guess on some level I was thinking so what if I don't have enough.  I am a spinner after all. If push comes to shove I could make more yarn. Right? Yeah. More likely it would have been stuffed back into a project bag and thrown in the back of the closet  never to be thought of again unless I needed those needles or even a bit of brown yarn. But as luck would have it (or maybe I'm just that skilled at predicting yarn quantities) I had enough. Barely. 

The pattern is called Newfoundland mittens (a freebie) and it's a favorite of mine. I've knit this pattern many times over the years. It's a traditional pattern that I grew up seeing all the kids wear. I had no idea they were unique to our province until I started knitting in earnest and realized how much knitting there was on the Internet. The same is true of thrummed mittens but that's another post. While searching out this pattern I discovered it was called Newfoundland mittens because the pattern supposedly had originated here. Who knew?

By the time I got to the thumb on the second mitt, I thought I was in trouble. It really looked like I wouldn't have enough. And these are mittens I plan on gifting to a very special little old lady who does a lot for our community. I didn't want these mitts to have two different coloured thumbs.

Well as it turns out I had enough.  In fact I had to magic knot the bit of yarn that was left over from the long tail cast on. (If you don't know what magic knot is, I urge you to look it up on YouTube along with Jane Richmond - it's brilliant) 

As an aside, I've always thought these mittens would look great inside out. If only someone would come up with a pattern 😉


lexa said...

Oh, I've done that before! I hate it when I'm almost done, and I run out of yarn!!

Jessie McKitrick said...

Oh yes indeed; I do play Yarn Chicken more often than I'd like, though I wish I'd have just enough more often! Lovely mittens!