Monday, January 29, 2007

All Thrums

For the Twisted Knitters DSK-along, I've started a pair of hand-dyed, handspun, handknit thrummed finger mittens. That's a lot of crafting! I've used up my initial stash of thrums, so it's time for a progress photo before rolling more.

Thrummed mitten in progress

Thrummed mittens are traditionally made in natural colors, with a dark MC and pale CC, but I plan to use these cycling, so went with light and bright colors for night and day visibility. The MC yarn is the horrible hairy 3-ply Blue Face Leicester I spun from the inferior roving bought at Rhinebeck. The thrums are bits of Kool-Aid dyed Merino and Finn, which so far are non-smelly and color-stable. Stitches for the thumb and index finger are on holders. (Were you wondering if I'm all thumbs???)

Having knit a bit, I think thrums oughta be about twice the diameter of the MC yarn, 3 to 4 inches (7.5 to 10 cm) long, and very solid. Some recommend wispy thrums, but mine attenuated considerably during knitting and the wispy ones simply fell apart. The cheerful thrum tails make the insides of the mittens as interesting as the outsides.

Thrum tails

The mitten is a quick knit, or would be if progress were linear. It started out per the directions for Jennifer L. Appleby's Thrummed Mittens in IK Winter 2006, which are fine as far as they go. However, I found the thumb uncomfortably bulky and the thrum technique in need of improvement. A consult with the authoritative Favorite Mittens by Robin Hansen offered fixes – a gusseted thumb, securing thrums by carrying the MC under the thrum tails – and also the inspiration of a finger mitten. So I frogged the first attempt and started over. My handspun held up to frogging well [vbg]. It's remarkably gratifying to knit with my own yarn, which (teehee) actually looks and behaves like "real" yarn.

It's going to take a while to build up another stash of thrums. For your amusement during the interval, you can vote for the first class of inductees to the NJ Hall of Fame.

Or try this insider's North Jersey quiz.

You Are 85% North Jersey

You are totally North Jersey! You really know the area and have Jersey pride. Chances are you just got back from being down the shore! Unless you're taking this test in wintertime in which case you just got back from Christmas shopping in Paramus. Unless it's Sunday, in which case... Hey how come I didn't see you in church today? =P

The Ultimate North Jersey Quiz
Create Your Own Quiz

A solid B seems about right for me. No surprise Sarcastic Twit is more NNJ than I (and, most likely, than thou).

And do hop on over to Risa's to support her preschooler twins' charitable efforts. There's nothing like fostering a sense of responsibility and altruism in very young children.


--Deb said...

Huh. I got 66%--you'd think I'd be better than that considering I've lived in Morris County my whole life!

clothesknit said...

i'm very impressed! the colors look like little jelly beans :o)

margene said...

The mittens are fabulous! Thanks for joining us for the TK KAL.

Anonymous said...

I haven't lived in NNJ in 7 years... and I scored a 91%. Guess you can take the girl out of Clifton, but you can't take the Clifton out of the girl...

Beth S. said...

I got 87%. Even after a decade-plus up here. ;-)

And your thrummed mitten? SO CUTE! I love the cheerful colors. :-) I've wanted to make a pair of these for ages now.

Nancy N. said...

I got 87% too - and I've lived here forever!

Laura said...

I've always thought the thrummed mitten seemed like a cool idea but it's the colorful ones like yours that make me think it's something I'd actually like to knit! Thanks for the fun progress photo. :)

PNB said...

I got 90%..Not bad for a bergen resident eh?? LOL

Right up there with that clifton gal who abandoned NJ or with that Nurse something....:)

Damn I am bored at work....:)