I have been doing a fair bit of knitting lately which has not yet made its way onto the pages of this blog. (Perhaps this is due to my photographer and blog collaborator/instigator having moved half way around the globe to attend university?) I have finished knitting Ravi, and think it will work out just fine. It still needs to be blocked, however, so it will be another week before I manage to post it as I can only take photos on the weekends now that the days are shorter. Don’t worry: I will post a complete report. I have also made not one, not two or three, but four small projects in the past weeks which I hope to tell you about soon. Since I am not going to report on my knitting progress here, I will instead tell you about a great designer in an interesting niche market.
Let me start by noting, I have cold hands. As soon as the weather starts to turn chilly, my hands become icicles and stay that way until June comes around. One would think, given that my hands are perpetually cold and that I am perpetually knitting, that I would have dozens of pairs of hand knitted gloves, mittens and mitts. You would think wrong. I have always been too addicted to sweater knitting, and despite my best intentions, I never get around to knitting things like hats, scarves, mitts, and socks. This year, however, I am determined. I will knit mitts! I will have warm hands!!
I have spent the past few weeks trying to narrow down my search for the perfect hand knit accessories for the hand. I have primarily focused on fingerless knits for two reasons. First, because my hands are always cold at work, where I spend most of the day at the keyboard typing away. So I need mitts that will look classy and suitable for the office but that will leave my fingers free for typing. Second, the thought of knitting gloves has always put me off. All of those fingers! Imagine actually knitting five fingers for each glove, all of those tiny stitches on tiny DPNs, all of those threads to weave in!
However, one look at the designs of Julia Mueller of Laris Designs may turn any knitter into a glove fanatic. (Or cause any glove fanatic to take up knitting!) Julia pretty much exclusively designs gloves. She has a few patterns for mitts or mittens, or other items, but she is primarily a knit designer of gloves. And her gloves are wonderful. I should note that her webpage is fairly outdated and she doesn’t seem to have published any new designs this year. She does, however, have an active Ravelry group (Laris Designs) and enough glove patterns to keep you busy knitting for a good while.
Given the glove fixation with five (for obvious reasons), I have picked five of her glove designs to show you here. It was very difficult to pick my five favorites; in fact this list changes daily. But here are five absolutely fabulous designs from Julia Mueller. First off, Three Oaks:
I think this is just beautiful. I have a lovely brown dress coat for the winter, and these would be perfect with it in this exact colour and yarn. Or, if you are into more avant-garde designs, how about the cooky, crazy Blue Hands:
If you have access to Ravelry (and if you don’t, you should), check out the lovely examples of Blue Hands that are there. People have knit them in many different colour combinations and they are seriously cool. I particularly like the more organic combinations, using deep rusts and browns and blues.
This next design is called Arkema, and combines knitting and beading with some beautiful cabling:
Doug says this design looks very architectural and art deco. It would be a great design for learning new techniques; there are so many great knitted features here for a knitter trying to expand their skills.
The design called Morgan incorporates a lace up ribbon:
Isn’t it beautiful? And, of course, you could have ribbons in many different colours, allowing you to instantly change the look of the glove. And you could have velvet ribbons, sparkly ribbons, lacy ribbons….. there are endless possibilities here. Plus, the patterning on the glove is cool. I love how the cable goes right up the middle finger.
I saved my favorite for last. This is the pattern called Eve:
It is one of Julia’s earlier patterns. I have had it in my queue on Ravelry since 2010. I love everything about this design. (And I love it in green! This green! Isn’t it great?) I have always intended to start with this one, if I ever manage to get over my glove knitting phobia. But now, I don’t know – it’s so hard to choose.
I really love the way that Julia has taken a very small and very restricted canvas – the hand – and really pushed it. In her hands (get it?) the glove is imbued with creativity, technical skill and engineering.