I started the Mosaic Mitts back in March as a way to truly stash bust. All of the yarn I was using was leftovers from other projects.
The yellow came from a sweater I made for Tim several years ago. I think I used the red to make a baby hat and mittens for a friend who had a baby a few years ago, but I didn’t like how they turned out so I made a blanket instead. I think I tossed the hat and mittens, but I had some of the red left over. I figured I had the least amount of red, so it had to be the color used the least.
Onto the green. I thought the green came from a multicolored hat I made for myself several years ago. I chose it to be the color that gets used the most in these mitts because I have a second skein of that yarn in my stash. If I was able to just use the part of the skein I made the hat from that would have been great, but I did have extra. Or so I thought.
So I started these mitts in March, and finished the first mitt in maybe a couple of days. It was a quick knit given how intricate it looks. This pattern uses slip stitches instead of stranded colorwork, so you only knit with one color on each row. Easy!
I got partway through the cuff of the second mitt and was running out of the green yarn, so I went into my stash to get that second skein. That’s when I made a terrible discovery. It wasn’t the same green. It turns out the green I had been using wasn’t from the hat I made for myself, it was from a hat I made for a friend. And they were both Lion Brand Wool Ease yarn, both in shades of green, but not the same green. I did not have any more yarn from the hat I made my friend. It was gone.
Ugh, how did I not check before I got started? What was I going to do? I put the mitts into hibernation and ignored them for a few months. Sometime in the summer I realized I have a bunch of different shades of green in Cascade 220 that I am going to use to make my vegetables. I didn’t need too much yarn to finish the knits so I could finish the mitts, and still have enough for whichever vegetable I was going to make out of the skein. Certainly one of those had to match better than the Wool Ease! So I checked. None of them matched any better. The mitts went back into hibernation.
As the year was coming to the end, the mitts started nagging on my mind. Anyone who reads this blog with any regularity knows that I’ve been counting the yards of yarn I acquire and the yards of yarn I knit, in the hopes of knitting more than I add to my stash. I really wanted to finish the mitts by the end of the year, and if I had a replacement yarn I knew I could finish them quickly. After I finished my holiday gift knitting I started pondering what to do about the mitts.
I should add here that I thought about going to the store and buying another skein of the same green. The dye lot might be different, but it was probably the closest thing I could get. But given the whole yards in/yards out thing, I really didn’t want to buy an entire skein and only use a small fraction of it. I quickly dismissed it.
Anyway, so I was thinking about it again, and I realized that I had two shades of green left over from some Christmas stockings I made a few years ago, with an extra full skein of each. I got them out of my stash, and found that the fern color was the closest to the yarn I had been using as I had come across so far.
This picture actually makes it look more different than it is. The lighting is off. You know, these mitts are for me. They aren’t a gift. I’m not going to be wearing them in fancy situations. So I figured, screw it, I’m moving forward.
I brought the yarn to a get together one of my friends from knit group was having the Saturday before Christmas and worked on them there. I showed the other knitters, and they all agreed it was close enough. When I didn’t hold them directly next to each other they almost looked the same. So I carried on, and sure enough I finished the mitts that evening.
Pattern: Mosaic Mitts by Sandy Cushman
Yarn: Lion Brand Wool-Ease in Avocado, Yellow, (a red with unknown colorway name); and Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Worsted in Fern, .3 skeins, 120.5 yards total
Needles: US 4
Date started: March 10, 2014
Date completed: December 20, 2014
Yeah, they look different. But when I’m wearing them and they are on each had on opposite sides of my body it’s hard to tell. You would have to look really closely to notice the difference. Well, if you are reading this you now know they are different and would be able to tell. But let’s play a game. Let’s see how many people who don’t read this blog notice.
I was glad to finally finish them. They are very warm, probably the warmest fingerless mitts I have. I love them.
Now, the yardage. These mitts took up 120.5 yards. That’s 120.5 yards of true stash yarn, leftovers that I wasn’t sure when, if, or how I was going to use.
I’ve been looking for more and more projects like this — multicolored projects that only take a small amount of yarn in any one color. Perfect for leftovers!