Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Tartan Mitts Spark

I knit in herringbone.

And, I knit in houndstooth.

 Both are traditional weaving patterns.
(That I knitted.)
(And that other knitters had knitted before me.)

How could I not want to take that further?
I looked at tartan plaids, and I learned that there have been many attempts to replicate them in knitting.

Most of them were aimed
replicating the tartan plaid
 rather than
creating a workable knitting pattern.

An example:


(as in this example)
also involved adding vertical rows of duplicate stitch.
I do think this looks amazing,
I also thought, why not do a two color tartan plaid?
Worked in stranded colorwork?
It would be easier to knit,
 and would not involve duplicate stitches,
or intarsia.

I spent (much) time with my charting software.
I think that it took seven attempts at charting,
and almost as many swatches,
until I got to this:

This is a photo of the actual swatch that I sent to Interweave Knits for their Call for Submissions for Holiday Gifts 2013.
The yarn is
The Fibre Company Canopy Fingering 
(50% Baby Alpaca, 30% Merino, 20% Viscose Bamboo; 200 yd [183m]/50g)
  in the colorways Sarsaparrilla and Acai.

I loved these colors together and I loved the yarn.

But I am glad that the Interweave editors selected the red and black colors:

© Interweave Knits/Harper Point

The yarn is
Brown Sheep Nature Spun Fingering
(100% Wool; 310 yd [283m]/50g)
 in the colorways Bougainvillea and Storm.
The pattern, my own,

For even more colorwork examples of knitted checks, plaids, and other patterns see the
"Workaday Color" story, pages 106-122, of


  1. I always enjoy hearing about your creative process - thank you for sharing!

  2. It worked out beautifully; it's a great design!

  3. Just beautiful! With your inspiration, I hope to start an Icelandic sweater soon!

  4. So much thought, so much hard work, but what a beautiful pair of mitts !!