Where I live... it is knitting season! This week I made my DH a pair of Newfie mittens - a very popular pattern in my part of Canada! You can get a pattern here.... www.balkanstyle.blogspot.com - it is under free patterns. I did mine a tiny bit different - my DH has wide hands so I cast on 42 instead of 40 and did a K1, P1 rib for 2.5" instead of the K2 P2 for 3". When I was done with the rib I Purled a row and then the next row I also purled - increasing the stitches to 48 evenly. Then I followed the pattern, but added an extra row of the pattern for additional length. For the thumb I had 17 stitches instead of 14 (my pair is for a guy!). And the decrease on this pattern is really abrupt - I ripped mine out and tried to get a more rounded shape, except by then I had already added the extra row of pattern so I couldn't add too much more. My decrease was K2, K2tog repeat all around. Next row K. 3rd Row K1, K2tog all around. 4th row - K2 tog all around. Last - K2 tog. around and bind off. Next time I won't add an extra row of pattern and will do a more gradual decrease at the tip for a nice rounded finish. But, they are done (except weaving in the ends)!!! And nice and warm since I used Briggs & Little 100% wool. Because of the 2 rows of purl inbetween the pattern you get a nice ridge - good for keeping your hands off the steering wheel on a cold winter morning! But, you also get that funny pattern that looks a bit inside-out. If you don't like that look - just K the 1st row and P the 2nd.
Edited to add: I am thinking that I MIGHT rip out the extra row of pattern and do replace with a gradual, rounded mitten tip. Not sure.
Here is my son's mittens from last year - his pair does not have the 2 rows of purl so you can see the difference - maybe - it looks a bit the same due to the varigated yarn! I didn't knit this pair - we bought them at Farmer's Market for all of about $5. They are acrylic so only good for Fall & Spring - in the winter he has to switch over to wool.
For this year he picked out bright orange and gray wool. He wants stripped mittens and I am thinking I will do orange cuffs/tips/thumb and then alternate the stripes 4 rows at a time. I will be able to get 2 pairs of mittens out of his wool so I will make a 2nd pair for him that is double knit for extra warmth. Let me tell you - the orange is BRIGHT! I like it that he likes orange - his hat, coat and neck warmer are also orange. He is constantly running out and about and it seems like every other week is some type of hunting season. Even though he stays close to the house - I do like him in orange!
We are moving early next week for at least 6 months and it is alot of work for me to prepare to leave my business for that long. Lots of work. With deadlines. Plus, I have all the other stuff I always have to do on top of that. So, it is a bit stressful. OK - really stressful. Moving us is easy, it is making sure I have everything I need to run the business long distance that bogs me down. Knitting is helping me relax a bit at night without making a big sewing mess. Knitting is small and portable and easy to tuck in the corner in a bag. I need that right now!