Whew….I made it here before the end of November! I had every intention of dropping by much sooner but the first DIY I had planned to share with you was a total FAIL! Please tell me you have experienced the DIY fail too. Pinterest makes it all look so easy! Oh well, it happens. Anyways….
Hi. I’m Margo. Introductions always feel a wee bit awkward for me so I’ll make it quick. I’m a mom to three and a wife to one. I am a clothes horse and to make things worse I love to sew. I document my sewing creations on a little blog, Creating In The Gap, feel free to visit anytime.
With the cold weather (including snow, yeah for pretty snow!) on its way, I have been thinking about mittens. I have knit mittens before…really I have but I am a slooooow knitter and I wanted to make mitts quick!! Then I remembered a story my father-in-law once told me about how his mother of eleven used to make them mittens. With eleven children she had precious little time to knit and so she would recycle old sweaters to make them new mittens. I’m sure many of you have heard similar stories from your grandparents as well.
This is an easy and quick way to make mittens. Of course it is even better because it uses up those old sweaters that have seen better days! Win and win!
The first thing I did was to draw out a pattern. I used a mitten I already liked and traced it. You could do this or do as my father-in-law’s mom did and trace the child’s hand directly. I love the picture this puts in my mind of a child feeling so special to have their mittens made custom for their precious hands.
*Notice that I traced my pattern to be bigger than the finished mitten, to account for the seam allowance when it is sewn together.
Next step is to cut out your mittens. The best way to do this is to line up the bottom of the mitten (where the cuff is) with the bottom band of the sweater. I laid the sweater out flat and cut out one mitten on each side of the button placket. Be sure to flip the pattern piece over to cut out the other one, especially if the front of the sweater is a different print than the back so that you have a left and a right mitten.
The next step is easy. Place your pieces with the right sides together. The “pretty” sides are on the inside facing each other. Then pin them together to prevent them sliding apart when you are sewing them.
There are a couple of ways to complete the next step. If you have a sewing machine, use your straight stitch to sew carefully around the mitten. The other option is to sew it by hand, just be sure to sew it securely. You can also place your mitten pieces wrong sides together (the “pretty” sides are on the outside) then with a nice floss or yarn use a blanket stitch around the mitten. There are many tutorials to use to do a blanket stitch online.
If you decided to use a sewing machine as I did, the next and important step is to snip the corner where the thumb meets the rest of the mitten. Snip it close to the stitch line BUT be careful not to cut through it! This step makes the thumb lay nice and flat.
The last step is to turn the mittens right side out. Now they are ready for that snowball fight!
I think one of the best parts of making these mittens is how many ways you can decorate them! For the cream and green ones I used fabric paint to stencil snowflakes on them. I love how they turned out!
You could use beads or buttons to decorate them. If you love hand stitching, stitching words of love to the person who is wearing them would be adorable. The possibilities are endless!
I hope you have as much fun trying this project as I did! Thanks for having me.