Christmas mittens 2019: Part 1

Good morning and welcome to the first part of this Knit-A-Long.

At the year’s longest night we bring the light back to our homes with help from the saint Lucia -a Swedish tradition with roots back to the Middle Ages! I hope that you’re surrounded with candle lights, have something warm to drink and some gingerbread cookies on a plate! Let’s start off this Christmas KAL accompanied by beautiful carols -at least, that’s what I’m (Maja) going to do.

Part 1 is focused on the cuff, in which we use stranded colourwork. The cuff is lined with a knitted rib. The technique is similar to the one used when knitting Lovikka mittens. If you’ve knitted a pair of Lovikkas you’ll probably recognize the construction.

We will use two different needle sizes when we knit the cuff. This is because the lining needs to be snug, while the beautiful stranded colourwork needs to be loose enough to be comfortable. This part of the KAL will include a favourite from last year’s Christmas mittens -the Latvian braid, that will encase the cuff beautifully. PLEASE NOTE! To get the correct measurements for the mittens it is important that you make a gauge swatch before you start your project. Here you will find all the information you need about materials needed, gauge and sizes.

CUFF - Stranded colourwork

With needles size 3mm and CC1: Cast on 60 sts. Knit in the round;

Latvian Braid
Round 1: *k1 with CC1, k1 with MC*. Repeat *-* to end.
Round 2: *p1 with CC1, p1 with MC*. Repeat *-* to end. NOTE! From now on until the braid
is finished you will keep both yarns in front of your work. When you change colour the new
yarn is to be carried under the yarn just used.

Round 3: *p1 with CC1, p1 with MC*. Repeat *-* to end. NOTE! From now on until the braid
is finished you will keep both yarns in front of your work. In this round the new yarn is to be
carried over the yarn just used.

Work stranded colourwork in stockinette (=knit all stitches when knitting in the round) from the chart. Stitches 1-10 are worked 6 times around each round from round 1 through 13. NOTE!The chart is read from right to left.

This is how I hold the yarns when I do colourwork:

The yarn closest to the knitting is called Contrast Colour (CC) and will become the more dominant colour in the pattern. The yarn farthest away from your knitting is called Main Colour (MC), even though the MC will not appear as much as the CC. MC can also be called background colour. Remember that the CC should run under and MC run over when you pick up the yarn with your needle to knit a stitch. It’s important that you are consistent for a good end result. On rounds 5-6 and 8-9 you will be knitting with three colours. During these rounds MC should be the dominant colour and CC1 the background colour when the star motif is knitted. Between the stars CC1 is the dominant colour and CC2 is the background colour. Read more about knitting with more than 2 colours here! The chart is portrayed in the different colour options we put together beforehand.

SMÄLLKARAMELL (Christmas cracker):

GÅRDSTOMTEN (the gnome):

BARNDOMSJUL (childhood's christmas):

MIDVINTERNATT (midwinter's night):

Knit another Latvian braid as previously described.

This is the end of the stranded colourwork and it’s time to move on to the cuffs’ lining -the part that will give your mittens an extra good fit!

CUFF - Ribbed lining

Turn your work inside and out.
Change your needles to size 2mm and use CC1 for this part.
Knit one round to the left (=in the opposite direction to previous rounds). See arrow on
picture above for clarity.
Knit 1x1 (k1, p1) rib for 19 rounds.
Knit 1 round.
Congratulations, the cuff is all done!

And also: Check out our Facebook group, Julvanten – you’ll find pictures, tips, and inspiration. Also, please share your work on Facebook and Instagram (@jarbogarn). Don’t forget to include the hashtag #julvanten2019