January 22, 2009

Flip Top Crochet Mittens

While Molly dozes in the sun on the arm of a chair on a cold Winter's day, I am quietly crocheting a pair of flip top mittens with the yarn I purchased in New Orleans. 

I like to visit a local yarn shop whenever I travel, select a "must have it" yarn,  and then work the yarn up into socks, gloves, a scarf, etc. when I return home to commemorate the trip.   Sometimes I can't wait to begin, and start knitting or crocheting during the trip itself.  

It was so much fun wandering from bin to bin touching all of the yarn, finding the "gotta have it" yarn and then deciding the best use to showcase the yarn to it's best advantage.  All the while, chatting with the ladies of the shop, giggling as they tease one another and visiting with the other shoppers.  

Handcrafter's are so relaxed and fun loving group of gals and always fun to be around.  The Southern accents were wonderful and they often reminded me of Paula Dean.  I spent almost two hours there browsing yarn, looking through books, and enjoying the girls.  My kind of afternoon...

I have said the same thing about gardener's - is it the busy hands?

I made these mittens up as I went along, experimenting with a shell pattern and determining gauge for the gloves.  I love to crochet, I have been doing it so long I really don't have to think about it as I go.  My mind is free to wander as my hands do all the work while I zen out... it's so relaxing for me.

Knitting and crocheting in the Winter is like gardening in the Spring and Summer for me.  I love both pastimes - it keeps me sane.  

I chose to make the wrist portion of the gloves longer for wrist warmers and to show off the beautiful variations of the yarn I selected,  Noro - the world of nature - 45% silk, 45 kid mohair and 10% lamb's wool - in color palette - Silk Garden Light made in Japan.

The length of the gloves allowed for a full range of color of the yarn to be displayed in one piece.  New sprout green - leaf green - evergreen - charcoal - blue - lavender - pink - peach - cantaloupe - beige - yellow......  all the colors in a Summer garden.  No surprise that it was my favorite and "must have yarn".  The yarn shop had so many wonderful offerings, but I knew this one was perfect for me.
The wrist and palm section is worked in a shell pattern, the finger and thumb portion is worked in double crochet. 

Round 1: Ch 41, join without twisting, sk 2 ch, 7 dbl in next ch, sk 2 chain, sc in next chain - repeat to the end.   The nunber of chains will depend on your wrist size and the placement of the end of the glove on your arm.

Round 2: slip stitch first 4 dbl crochet of shell stitch, sc in top of shell, 7 dbl crochet in between shells in sc, sc in top of shell - repeat to end of row.

Continue until desired length of wrist and palm portion.  

For thumb opening - turn and work in opposite direction leaving a gap for the thumb opening.  A few rows will usually do the trick.  Put the glove on for proper placement and fit before closing at the top of the opening by rejoining your rows.  You may need to chain across the opening depending on the fit.

Continue in shell pattern to top of palm section (just above the knuckles).

I worked the finger section by single crochet base along the inside edge of the back of the fingers side and then chained and joined to make a round.    You could work the finger portion seperately and then join by stitching the two pieces together.  It's a personal preference which method you use.
I worked the thumb separately and then stitched it onto the palm portion of the glove while wearing to ensure proper placement and comfortable fit.   This was a lot easier than it sounds.
I chained 20 stitches for the thumb portion, but the number of chains will depend on the size of your thumb and the opening in the glove.  I worked evening for three rows and then decreased two stitches evenly spaced apart for shaping of the thumb.  

For the opening, work across half of the stitches and then chain and join to the other side and continue working in dbl crochet to top of thumb - again this will depend on the length of your thumb.
The finished glove.  These gloves would be beautiful in a soft fuzzy yarn - but would not be a warm as the rugged wool used here.  I love to wear fingerless gloves to refill my bird feeders in the Winter.  

Hands stay nice and warm until you flip the fingers and thumb back for a moment to open the feeder and then the gloves are flipped closed for the return trip to the house or to the next feeder.  

No need to pull your gloves off for dexterity's sake - 
I am toying with the idea of adding a fleece liner for the finger portion and thumb.  A crocheted liner of soft fleecy yarn could be added as well.


Lee W - The Way I See It said...

I love these mittens- they looks so pretty and soft. Great colors!

Anonymous said...

these are lovely Julie, and such geogous colors.

Laura said...

What a fabulous idea! and so pretty too! Molly is so cute on the arm of the chair, too funny.
God bless, Laura

Hillary said...

These are amazing! I've been looking for a pattern like this. My fingers freeze when I'm at football games for band, but mittens and gloves mess up playing my instrument. I have just the yarn to make this. ^.^