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Anstruther Hat and Mittens.

I got the patterns for the Anstruther Hat and Mittens from my lovely and talented Ravelry friend Erica. You can check out her blog here. I spent a couple of days on deciding the perfect color-combination for them and ended up choosing white and two different pinks with light gray as the main color. I really like the design; it reminds me of traditional Scandinavian knitting, but there are also some really nice details such as the lacy cuffs of the mittens.

I broke my promise of not buying more yarn until my stash has substantially diminished. But I thought it's OK if I use the yarns right away and don't stash them at all. And since the promise was made only to myself and no one else is involved it's not like I'm hurting anyone by buying a couple of skeins. Actually in this case it's quite the opposite: the yarns that I bought are called Roosa Nauha which translates as the Pink Ribbon and part of the money from every skein sold goes to breast cancer awareness so I'm actually helping people and donating to charity by buying these yarns. Conscious cleared! I was having lunch with Magnus last Thursday when I saw these yarns and having just received the patterns I immediately thought they would be a perfect fit.

The patterns call for 4 different color yarns so I'm also using two from my stash, so this project is not a total disaster regarding my overflowing stash. In addition to the Roosa Nauha -yarns (light gray and salmon) I'm using off-white Novita Pikkusisko (leftover from my Burnham mittens) and raspberry pink Garnstudio Drops Alpaca.

I always have hard a time picking needles when the pattern calls for a needle size that is "something-point-75 mm" since we don't have needles like that in Finland, at least I've never come across such. The sizes are even millimeters or halves. The pattern called for 2.75 mm needles so I had to decide between 2.5 mm and 3.0 mm. I know, I should make a swatch, but who has time for that? This far I've done well with my estimates and educated guesses. So for the hat I decided to knit the ribbed brim with the smaller needles and then change for the bigger ones once I reach the fair-isle section. I seem to have a small head: I base this assumption on the fact that most hat patterns are usually a tad too large for me, so I'm hoping this slightly tighter brim will be a perfect fit :)

I started the hat with a different method of provisional cast on than what was in the pattern: I like using the one from the Knitty website because it's really easy and quick to undo. I also think the live stitches are easier to pick up as you just insert your needle through them and pull out the scrap yarn.


  1. Hooray! This is so exciting! However, I'm sorry that I contributed to you breaking your stash promise, thank goodness for pink ribbon yarn that is easy on the conscience ;). I love the colors that you chose, I can't wait to see it come together. Grey for the main is my favorite, too.

    I learned so much from this post, such as I did not know you couldn't get .25/.75mm needles in Finland. That is good to know! I will remember that going forward. I think the 3mm for the Fair Isle portion is perfect as colorwork is always a little bit tighter. I have never tried the Knitty provisional cast-on before and I am really excited by the prospect of easy unraveling, that is certainly the way to go!

    Thanks so much!xo


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