During the frigid temps we have this time of year in Colorado, we’re always looking for mitten and sock patterns to keep our fingers and toes toasty. We’re enamored with the stunning Scandinavian-style mittens to knit that are featured in the PieceWork January/February 2017 issue. Have a look at the various styles below, plus read the inspiring histories behind the designs.
Skaite-Maria: The Red and Black Mittens
Beckoning from the issue’s striking cover is Laura Ricketts’s Skaite-Maria: The Red and Black Mittens. The pattern was created over a hundred years ago by the Sami knitter Skaite-Maria from the Jokkmokk parish of northern Sweden. Skaite-Maria’s wonderful knitting has been kept alive through the research and writing of Erika Nordvall Falck also of Jokkmokk, Sweden. What makes Skaite-Maria’s so unique? The patterning before and after the thumb were of equal proportions. Laura’s interpretation is not an exact reproduction; her thumb is a bit more streamlined.
Laura Ricketts’s striking Skaite-Maria: The Red and Black Mittens are the perfect take-along project.
Erna Jansons’s Design No. 51
Latvian-born Erna Jansons is a prolific knitter and artist. Well into her eighties, she is still publishing books of her designs like Latviešu Cimdu Raksti (Latvian Mitten Designs), which contains one hundred mitten designs. Mary Germain met Erna in 2005 and based the colors and motifs of this pair of spectacular mittens on Erna Jansons’s Design No. 51. The mittens include a knitted lining, which makes them comfortable and wonderfully warm.
Mary Germain based the colors and motifs of this pair of spectacular mittens on Erna Jansons’s Design No. 51.
Lithuania-Inspired Floral and Entrelac Mittens
Donna Druchunas’s Lithuania-Inspired Floral and Entrelac Mittens were inspired by the love the people of Lithuania have for flowers and combine both stranded colorwork and entrelac— gorgeous! As winter’s chill passes to spring, these lovely mittens will remind you of the flowers to come. New to entrelac? They are a perfect place to learn a new technique.
Donna Druchunas’s gorgeous floral mittens were inspired by the love the people of Lithuania have for flowers.
Mittens are the ultimate take-along project with their small size, and they don’t require much yarn. PieceWork’s three Scandinavian-style mittens include both engaging colorwork and a tie to knitting’s past—plenty to keep any knitter amused and their needles busy. Alleviate your longing for a new knitting project and cast on a pair today!
Originally published March 1, 2017; updated December 30, 2022.