Last weekend was spent visiting family and involved a lot of crisscrossing of the territory from New Jersey to Long Island.
Happily, I wasn’t driving so I got a lot of car knitting done!
On one of our crossings we popped out of the Lincoln Tunnel and ended up on 42nd Street.
On a Saturday evening.
In the middle of a bunch of cars and tourists.
On the bright side (aside from the fact that I wasn’t driving) the heavy traffic gave us plenty of time to enjoy the sights, sounds, and (ahem) smells of The City.
One of the sights that caught my eye was a woman wearing a very cute pair of cream colored arm warmers. The arms was just ribbing, but there was a black snowflake motif at the wrist.
We were moving so slowly that I probably had time to take a picture, but I didn’t think of it.
Heck, we were moving so slowly that I probably had time to jump out of the car, chase her down, take several pictures, and get back to the car before they’d gone to far. But I didn’t because jumping out of the car would have stressed everyone out.
So I just have my memory and imagination to recreate them!
As you can see from my sketch (and my drawing skills leave a lot to be desired!) I’ve probably embellished them a little bit.
Since I’m basically designing the arm warmers from scratch, some swatching is in order.
After flipping through all my stitch dictionaries, I found the image of a snowflake motif that I liked on page 89 of The Ultimate Knitting Book from Vogue Knitting.
My swatch is quite pleasant, although not quite what I had in mind, and I thought I’d go for it. (I think the snowflake on the lady’s mitts was thinner. More a a line snowflake with dots around it.)
But as I settled down recreate the chart an issue presented itself.
My swatch didn’t look like the knitted sample in the book despite the fact that I’d followed the accompanying chart.
This required two charts.
First I recreated the chart that appears in the book and that matches my swatch.
Then I created a chart based on the knitted sample in the book.
As you can see, the centers are rather different. Both motifs are 15 sts wide, but the first one is 19 rows tall while the second is 15 rows tall.
This discrepancy is going to set my designing back, but that is one of the reasons we swatch.
My next step will be working a swatch of the second motif so I can have a better idea of which one I prefer.
Go For It
In the mean time, this is probably enough information for other experienced knitters to run with the idea. Everyone else will have to wait until I’ve knit at least one mitt so I have good numbers for you!
This is what I have so far:
Yarn: Ella Rae Classic Wool (black and white or colors of your selection)
Gauge: I’m calling it 5.5 sts/inch, but it’s unclear. I worked a 19 stitch swatch and it’s about 3 1/2″ wide.
I’m thinking a motif on both the top and the bottom of the wrist so the yarn travels around the mitt. I’m thinking 40 sts for the motif section.
40 sts at 5.5 sts/inch should give you a 7″ circumference, which will fit my wee wrists.
I’m planning arm warmers, so I want them to reach up my forearm, which would mean casting on 56 sts for a 10″ circumference. Then gradually decreasing down to 40.
Maybe. It’s a work in progress.