Lace-up gloves



These are Leigh Radford’s lace up gloves from Alterknits. They’re a belated Christmas present for female-friend-R, to stop her complaining about how nice mine are. In what might be taken as role reversal, mine are bright-dark-red Manos (or possibly Maya, I can’t remember), and hers are purple Knitting4fun spacedyed.

I have no WIP photos for these – I cast them on on Thursday, and finished them yesterday. They barely even appeared as WIPs in my Ravelry projects list before I marked them as finished. I reckon each glove took a maximum of two and a half hours – I can be so specific because I knit everything except the thumb of glove number two on two one-hour train journeys yesterday, then knit the thumb, tidied the ends and threaded the ribbon when I got home. 

I had two moments of synchronicity with these. On Friday I was casting off the main body of the first glove while looking through Cat Bordhi’s New Pathways for Sock Knitters (of which more later), and as I got to the last couple of stitches to cast off, I arrived at the very last page of the book, which includes “A very fine end, indeed” – a way of finishing a circular cast off that creates a continuous chain, rather than a step. I immediately used this on the glove, and it is indeed very fine. I’ve gone on to use it on all three other cast off edges in these gloves, and now can’t even tell where the ends are from the outside of the glove :-)

The second moment of synchronicity was on the train yesterday. I went into London on my own to meet some friends, and although I’m less travel sick on trains than on most other forms of transport, I prefer not to exacerbate it by reading if I can find something else to do (I can read on trains, which is more than I can on coaches or in cars, but still best not to push it). So I packed needles, yarn and instructions (scribbled out, not the whole book), and an ipod full of back issues of Cast On, which I’m still catching up with, and one of the ones I listened to featured an interview with Leigh Radford, who had just released her one skein book at the time.

Choosing the yarn for these was hard. R wanted them just like mine, and in either red or purple, and she was happy to have mine second hand if I was willing to give them. Although I was theoretically willing to knit myself a nicer pair and give her my old ones, I didn’t feel that was really in the spirit of a gift, which left me with the options of either knitting her red ones (which might be too much like mine) or knitting her purple ones (which I’d be likely to like more than mine and would therefore agonise about which to give her). I considered various options from my stash (including my fibre, not-yet-yarn, stash) and others from online stores, and didn’t really get anywhere. Then on Thursday I remembered about the Knitting4fun space-dyed, which is in my stash, but some of which is currently a stealth WIP* so I don’t think of it as available yarn. I’m hoping it’s ideal – I love it, but at this size circumference it’s a bit too brightly patterned for me; R will probably think it’s ‘jolly’. And comparing the texture of the new gloves with the old ones, I’m glad I decided to knit hers fresh – they’re all smooth and pretty, whereas mine are a bit bobbly, a bit fluffy around the edges. I love them, but they’re clearly used.

*Stealth WIP = one which is not on my Ravelry projects list and therefore doesn’t count towards my WIP total. In this case I had an idea for the yarn – and possibly a pattern submission – but it hasn’t quite worked out so I’m probably going to frog it, so I don’t mind cannibalising yarn for these gloves.

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