So this post is backdated because, um, (a) I wrapped the relevant items before taking pictures, and (b) they only got unwrapped yesterday (11/2, in real time), and it was totally worth surprising Emily.
Six wee mittens for six wee hands. It was about a week before Christmas when I realized “crap, we have no gifts for the nephews! What’s FAST?” I found a free, functional-looking pattern and cast on in the leftovers from Jared’s hat with five days to spare.
One small mitten took a little over two hours. In order to make a 2-year-old size, I followed the pattern more or less exactly but with worsted weight on US 8s. (I did five rows of plain stockinette between thumbhole and starting the decreases.) To make a pair big enough for a large 3-year-old, I cast on four additional stitches, increased one additional time for the thumb gusset, and did 2 or 3 extra rows between thumbhole and top decreases.
My guesstimation seems to have paid off! None of three toddlers protested at having mittens jammed on their hands, and they were able to use their opposable thumbs to go on playing with new toys without complaint! They didn’t even try to strangle each other with the strings. I call that a win-win-win, as I’ve got enough sense to not be too emotionally invested in knitted gifts for toddlers. I could also call it luck.
Imagine my delight when they not only liked the mittens, but needed them. Em was actually going to spend the next week knitting wee mittens for cold hands. Score one for free time for a busy mom.
Yarn: Super Djinni by Dragonfly Fibers. Hand-dyed, 80% Merino / 10% Cashmere / 10% Nylon. Compellingly beautiful colors, and very soft and warm on both small hands and big husband heads. (And Emily, it says on ravelry in very clear letters, Machine Washable: YES.) It could only be improved by being free.
Pattern: Toddler Mittens-on-a-string. Straightforward, painless pattern. I think as written (on 5s with a DK-weight gauge), they’d fit a 1-year-old. My adaptation (on 8s with heavy worsted) worked for 2T, and with a few adjustments easily made a 4T. I also replaced the I-cord with a crochet chain string, because I was worried about running out of yarn, and if Em doesn’t want strings I didn’t want to have invested in 6 feet of I-cord. Best of all, these simple little mittens do not obstruct toddler play!