Mittens are a must-have for the winter season, and although it's hard enough to create a finished article that fit perfectly, what's worse is knitting a pair of mittens that fail in their most important practical function - keeping you warm!
So, if you feel like your knitted gloves are letting in all the cold wind and freezing your hands - don't despair - Ajanta Studios will give you all the tips and trips to making the warmest mittens you'll ever own...
#1. Knit With The Right Wool
The secret here is that there is no secret - use wool! More specifically, make sure you get your hands on a high quality natural sheeps wool which is not only super insulating, but also wicks moisture away from the skin and towards the surface of the mitten, allowing any water to evaporate off the surface more easily and keep your hands dry. This is perfect for cold temperatures, drizzle, rain, and even snow.
#2. Knit With A Smaller Needle Size
When it comes to creating truly weatherproof mittens, it's important to understand that the knitting process will naturally leave your project with tiny holes and gaps. The trick here is to make those gaps in your knitting as small as possible, so make sure you get your hands on needles that are at least 2 sizes smaller than what you'd usually go for. In fact, you can go as small as you like, just as long as it doesn't make your project difficult to work on or increase the risk of a needle breakage. If you're worried about the smaller needle size making the fabric too stiff, this is fine, particularly for a more weatherproof mitten.
#3. Double-stranded Knitting
Get fast and efficient by opting for a double-stranded yarn technique. Using this doubling up technique will really help to warm up your fabric and you could even use two different types of yarn to reap all the cosy benefits! If you're unsure how to knit double strands, check out this handy instructional video.
#4. Go For A Cable Stitch
If you can't get rid of the gaps with a smaller knitting needle, use a cable stitch. Cables create an even warmer and thicker fabric that will help to bulk up your project and remove some of the gaps that naturally occur when knitting.
#5. Create A Mitten Lining
If all else fails, try sealing in the warmth with a great lining to close up any open spaces in your knitting. You can either create an inner an outer mitten design that will create a barrier against the cold with a fine knit fabric on the inside and a bulky knit on the outside. You can also use a sewing machine to create a fleece lining on the inside of the mitten or purchase a fabric lining to complete your cold weather project.