One of the earliest patterns I favourited on Ravelry was the endpaper mittens. It is one of those amazing free patterns that has done whatever the knitting equivalent of going viral is, so many people have made these and I wanted some too.
I had a go at some colourwork socks about eighteen months ago, they were less than successful and still sit, half done, in a bag lurking deep in my stash.
This year I decided I was going to crack colourwork. I set aside a weekend I knew I would have the house to myself and bought yarn. This was one of those projects that gets finished by obsessive knitting.
Pattern: Endpaper mitts
Yarn: Cygnet wool rich 4 ply.
Needles 3mm dpns
The pattern is great, simple but effective. It is an ideal introduction to colourwork. The fact it is mitts means there is less of a problem with fit and short floats do not require trapping to avoid snags (one skill at a time people).
I picked up a few extra stitches for the thumb ribbing and reduced them on the following round. The thumb is actually a little tight so more stiches would have been better.
I did the first round working both yarns with my left hand, dropping the one that was needed. That got old fast! I am not great at continental knitting, I struggle with getting a decent tension, making very loose stitches but figured I would try two handed. It worked well as the tension problems actually stopped me pulling the floats too tight. I still find it awkward and can't purl easily the way I do it so I am unlikely to switch styles for regular knitting. I will work out how to purl in the second colour of colourwork when the issue comes up. Which may well be never, no point worrying about it :).
In the picture above the mitts look a bit wide. I figured since I had defeated the colourwork demons I should be a good knitter and block the finished object. In particular to even out where the needles met. Unfortunately I overestimated my arm size and blocked them over a drinking glass. They fit but are loose rather than snug. They will be reblocked and hopefully revert to a better size.
The wool was a pleasant suprise, it is not overly expensive but fairly soft. It fluffs up somewhat on washing, but really no more than you would expect from a wool yarn. The price is good and there is a wide range of colours, it is ideal for this sort of project. I have lots leftover so will give it a whirl as a sock yarn. The nylon content should make it wear well.
Colourwork close up!
It is possibly I have the start of a new obsession here. There are so many amazing colourwork patterns, I may even dig those sock back out and start them over again.