Lion Mitt Makeover

I’m going to start this post with a bit of a cautionary tale.  I implore all of my fellow craft companions to think twice, and then think a third, fourth and fifth time, before you decide to throw any of your project notes away.  A couple of years ago I used to make animal fingerless mitts.  After my son was born, I decided that I was going to concentrate entirely on designing my own patterns and stop selling finished items.

Fast forward to when I was pregnant with my second son and trying to fit a whole craft room of items into my room so that my son wouldn’t have to sleep in a basket of yarn.  I had to downsize a lot, and as I was going through stuff I came across my notes detailing how I made my animal fingerless mitts.  I wasn’t currently selling physical items and hadn’t made any since I had made that initial decision almost two years before.  I didn’t think that I’d ever want to or have the need to make them again, so I THREW MY NOTES AWAY.  Well, guess what?  I decided that I want to start making them to sell again.  While It’s not catastrophic since I’ve grown as a designer and can take the opportunity to improve on and slightly change the designs, there are some things that I wish I knew from my old notes.  So heed my warning and keep your notes!

Now on to the main topic of this post.  Before I stopped selling them, the last design I came up with were my lion fingerless mitts.

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I was never completely satisfied with them, because they didn’t have the realistic quality of the other animals that I made.  When deciding how I wanted my owl and bear mitts to look, I performed several image searches trying to make them as true to life as I could.  I paid special attention to the details of their eyes.  I didn’t do that with my lion mitts and I’m not sure why.  Maybe I had made so many pairs in preparation for a craft show that I got lazy, or maybe I just never really thought about how underwhelming they seemed when compared with my other animal mitts.  When I decided I was going to start selling them again, the first thing on my agenda became a total redo of my lion design.

I started pouring over images of real lions, and this is what I came up with:

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I hope you like them as much as I do.  There is a pair currently available in my Etsy store and they are always available by request.

My owl, bear, and sock monkey fingerless mitts will probably receive some minor upgrades as well, but nothing so drastic.  Some other animals that I hope to create eventually include koalas, dogs, cats, and pigs.  I also have some ideas for some seasonal designs around the holidays.  I’m sure I’ll come up with more once I get those finished, but if there is something you’d really like to see, let me know, and I’ll add it to my list.

A note to my fellow knitters: I don’t currently offer a pattern for how to make my animal mitts. I’m somewhat selfishly keeping the details to myself so that I have something moderately original to sell, but my advice to you is this. If you would like to make some, find a simple fingerless mitt pattern that you like and use it as a blank canvas. Let your imagination run wild and you never know where it might take you!

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