Poetry Mittens to Knit

Worked in the round of fingering-weight yarn, our brightly colored poetry mittens warm more than just your hands on a chilly day. If you wish to design your own mittens, sources of suitable poems are many. Use the poem that Veronica Patterson composed with mittens in mind (see bellow), knit up an old favorite, or create your own poem. When you know the gauge and size of the mitten you want to knit, draw an outline on graph paper and work the letters of the poem into the space.

The fine detail and absence of a rhythm in the lettered pattern make this a challenging project, best for knitters with experience in multicolored knitting. You’ll also need to know how to graft stitches together for a neat finish at the tip of the mitten.

Poetry mittens

PieceWork’s Poetry Mittens to Knit. Mittens knitted by Marge Yee-Norrander. Photos by Joe Coca.

Mitten Verse

Put on your coat,
scarf, gay mittens
knitted of sun and sky
to walk in white hills.
We won’t go in till
drifts erase our way.
When snow swirls
we begin to dream
of dancing firelight
and hasten gaily home,
clapping hands
and words to
warm them.

—Veronica Patterson

The pattern for Veronica Patterson and Jane Fournier’s poetry mittens is available in PieceWork’s January/February 2008 issue, our 2nd annual Historical Knitting issue. Find more stunning mittens to knit in the January/February 2017 issue, too. For a preview, see “Yearning to Knit Scandinavian Mittens.”

Veronica Patterson is a poet, essayist, and editor, who teaches writing at the University of Northern Colorado. She was the founding editor of PieceWork and helped direct the magazine through 1996. Her full-length collections of poetry include Swan, What Shores? (New York: New York University Press, 2000) and How to Make a Terrarium (Cleveland, Ohio: Cleveland State University Poetry Center Press, 1987).

Featured Image: Cast on a pair of poetry mittens and use Veronica Patterson’s poem or write one of your own.

Find a wealth of historical knitting patterns in PieceWork!


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