Monday, November 05, 2007

Marigold Mitts

I am determined to warm the hands of all my friends and family. This makes the fourth pair of fingerless mitts I've knit this autumn!

Pattern: Fingerless Mitts by Ann Budd from Weekend Knitting
Yarn & Needles: Vermont Fibers Handspun Alpaca, US 9
Mods: None

This yarn should look familiar to you, Ann, since it was last summer's housewarming gift from you to me! And wow, Ann, this is some amazing stuff. The rustic texture of the yarn is the perfect thing for a garter stitch, and softness of the alpaca is a treat for the hands. This was my first experience in knitting with handspun, and I am officially hooked. I loved it.

But what intrigues me the most is that these are naturally dyed using marigolds and onion. Here's what the label says:

This yarn is made of fiber from Vermont's finest farms. It is hand processed and dyed with natural plant materials using traditional dye methods involving flowers, bark, lichens, and mushrooms.

Of course! I tried to describe the color to someone once, since it isn't a sunny yellow, or a mustardy yellow, or a greenish or brownish yellow. I should have explained that it is the color you would expect if yarn was dyed with marigolds and onion skins. This is exactly the color you'd imagine. Now I want yarn dyed from lichens. And mushrooms!

The tag also reveals that the yarn comes from an alpaca named Marigold! I love that! I have furiously searched online to learn more about this yarn, (and where I could get mushroom or lichen yarn) but it appears that having serious earth-cred also means having no online presence. Fiber Festival attendees and Vermonters, keep a sharp eye for Vermont Fibers from Plainfield, VT, and buy this yarn.

The individualness of the yarn made it especially hard to give these away, but while I love them, they are even more perfect for someone else who reads this blog. If she is at all paying attention, she'll notice right away that they match the scarf I made her last fall. And that they are super-natural and Earthy and green and eco-conscious, which might tweak this certain person's enthusiasm. And that having recently acquired a job that requires a commute, she might need some help in the handwarming department.*

* They're for my sister, my Favorite Person to Knit For, new commuter and all around enviro-woman.


Theresa said...

Those photos are gorgeous - they really do the project justice.

Anonymous said...

I love your goal of making hand knit mittens for all your loved ones. These are so lovely - especially the color!

Anonymous said...

I love them. I feel the need to knit some mitts. Mostly for myself, though knitting for your loved ones is a good and true calling. In the mitt department, I am feeling a bit selfish. I feel like I need them more than anyeone else!

Ann said...

I'm so glad the yarn knit up so nicely! I was so taken by the color and description too. And they are just perfect for the earth lovin sis! Hurray!

SpiderWomanKnits said...

My eyes are wide open ;-)

They are beautiful!

Anonymous said...

I broke in the mustardy mitts of marigold at an old fashioned pig roast on a farm in the country this weekend. Not only were they most fetching by bonfire-light, they are quite cozy, soft and indeed do look righteously autumnal with my super 70s scarf.

Of note also is that Big Sis slipped these in the mail to Little Sis as a surprise. Yay! Hugs!

Sally said...

Sweet! Those are awesome mitts. Is Little Sis now living somewhere different (and safer)?

pamela wynne said...

absolutely beautiful -- all perfect and simple and stuff.
I feel like this pattern was made for rustic-y and/or handspun yarns.

Also, what kind of bind-off/seam did you use, and what does it look like?

Lolly said...

These are beautiful! I love the handspun look. Great photos. She will love them, no doubt ;)

Kristy said...

What a great gift! I've been saving onion skins recently in case I want to eventually dye with them-- it takes a long time to get enough.

Anonymous said...

sally: still living in the same place, but with a fresh set of bars on the windows, solid locks, motion detection lights on the porch, and a trusty rock hammer under my bed at night! all's well. i guess crime is just part of life in the big city, meh. i do have a new job though, hence the need for non-septa-token-hindering hand-wear. thx for asking!