Monday, October 28, 2013

Lou Reed and the Sweet Jane Mitts

Lou Reed, 1942-2013

"Simply put, it's impossible to imagine the past 50 years of rock without Lou Reed. Glam rock, punk and various strains of '80s and '90s indie and alternative rock would simply vanish without his example. Every New York rocker in a black leather jacket, from the Ramones to the Strokes, stands in Reed's shadow. David Bowie's early gender-bending persona was explicitly in Reed's debt."

When I was sixteen, I got my hands on a copy of Different Times: Lou Reed in the 70s, and it blew my mind. Reed's music has played a big part in the soundtrack to my life ever since. Though I love many of his songs, the standout track for me is a live version of "Sweet Jane", a song he originally recorded with The Velvet Underground. The song is still in my top ten list of favorite songs ever.


When I woke up Sunday to the news of his passing, I was crushed. I decided to spend the afternoon nursing my broken heart with comfort knitting and Reed's music blasting on repeat.

I ended up creating a pair of cozy, quick-to-knit fingerless mitts that, just like Lou Reed's music, will never go out of style. Scroll on for the pattern!

My Sweet Jane Mitts are a purposefully simple design that is knit in-the-round and consists of just ribbing and stockinette. Finished mitts are 9.5" long and 4" wide (measured flat) and will stretch to fit a variety of sizes. Choose a soft, squishy yarn in pretty colors and you'll love wearing these mitts for years to come.
I used Malabrigo Mecha in Arapey (875)
  • 1 skein bulky yarn
  • Size US 10.5 needles (4 DPNS or 1 long circular needle if using the Magic Loop Method)
  • Yarn needle
  • Stitch marker (optional)
Glossary of abbreviations:
  • CO: cast on
  • BO: bind off
  • K: knit
  • K1P1: knit one stitch, purl one stitch
  • CO 30 stitches, join to knit in-the-round. Place stitch marker to mark beginning of round if desired.
  • K1P1 for 10 rounds
  • K for 30 rounds
  • BO 3 stitches; K rest of round
  • CO 3 stitches; K rest of round (you've just made the thumb hole!)
  • K for 5 rounds
  • K1P1 for 10 rounds
  • BO in pattern loosely
  • Weave in ends with yarn needle; repeat all steps for second mitt