Poetry Mittens

Poetry mittens had their start in the USA during the early 19th century. This art showed off the precise and complex skill of the knitter. A favorite poem was knitted into the mittens.

The poem would start at the wrist, and wind its way to the fingertips. The knitted poem would then continue at the wrist of the second mitten and end at the finger tip. .”X”‘s were used to delineate the poems lines.

Colorwork is involved as two different  color yarns need to be carried throughout the work. From my observance it looks as thought the pattern is 7 knits and one purl, repeating. Each letter is 7 stitches wide. The purl acts as the spacing.

 Have a short poem you love? You will need graph paper and some stamina. Would love to see your “poetry mittens”, or comments on knitting them.

The  National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center houses the original mittens.

Knitting Examiner


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