They were knit in a soft tan and cream wool. There’s a left one and a right one--a refinement I left behind a hundred mittens ago. The cuff is ribbed with a two stitch cable. The top of the hand and thumb were decreased to form a triangle. The diamond stitch pattern is an interesting play of negative and positive, knit at 7 stitches to an inch. A simple folk mitten, they are more complex than any of my own creations. And though they are a tight fit for my hand and rarely worn, they reside in the basket where I keep my everyday walk gear--hand knit mittens, hats, and cowls. Their presence adds a welcomed grace.
I found the mittens at the Crowded Closet, a thrift store in our town, run by Mennonites. A thin strand of the mitten’s wool held them together along with a small tag-like card completely written in what I thought was Cyrillic. Today, examining the tag more closely, I found some English words. Googling them, I learned the mittens were Estonian. Studying that informative little slip of paper with its official looking rubber stamp, and unique code of numbers, I was drawn to very last entry on the back side. Meister. Mactep. Although I could not translate it, I think I know what it means. Master--the knitter who made them. And beside it, inked in a confident blue scrip was just one name. Reuimel.
Of Interest --Related and almost related suggestions
Winter is the Warmest Season, Snow – Lauren Stringer.
Lauren’s books are picture book winners. Look for her titles as well. And check out Lauren’s new blog.
Estonian mittens all around the world- Aino Praakli
I haven’t read this yet, but it came up on my Google search. Looks very interesting.
Lativan Mittens: Traditional Designs and Techniques Lizabeth Upitis
At one time, I owned two copies of this book. I have never knit any of the mittens, but I love looking at the piuctures and reading about them. One day, I will knit a pair. Or maybe just one.
Recipe: The Best Brisket Ever –
What to serve on a cold spring night?
This recipe is from Art Ginsburg, a.ka. Mr. Food. I knew Art and his family when I was growing up in Troy, New York. I wished had known his brisket recipe years ago. It took scores of advice from the experienced, and the first few years of my marriage, to nail down cooking brisket. I had been a vegetarian, and back then, beef baffled me. Now brisket is what I make when I need something easy for dinner. I like to make it the day before, or early in the day. That way the brisket has time to sit, and the fat can easily be skimmed off the top. Try this recipe with potatoes, carrots and cabbage.
Note: I will now be blogging regularly on Fridays. Post should appear by noon CST. I have added a Blog RSS for those of you who would like to follow that way. I am thing about starting a monthly newsletter with stories, pictures, pattern and recipe links. If you'd like to be on my mailing list, send me an email from the contact page.