Pattern Spotlight: Spigato Mitts by Barbara Besnon

One of the best perks of being a designer is getting a sneak peek at new yarns from my favorite yarnies, so when Anzula asked if I would like to work with a new 100% cashmere yarn I couldn’t say yes fast enough! We discussed what might be the best type of pattern for me to create and decided that fingerless mitts with some colorwork ticked all of the boxes. I am super excited to introduce you to the Spigato Mitts designed for the new fingering weight yarn Serenity!

I wanted to have the buttery softness of this yarn somewhere where I could really feel it – and what is more feely than your hands? Since Anzula has so many amazing colors restricting myself to just one seemed to be a bit unfair so colorwork was a must. After we decided on the colors Saffron and Blanche all that was left was to decide what kind of colorwork.

I seriously considered stranded work because I love how intricate it looks, but it seemed to be such a shame to have all of those floats of cashmere running along inside the mitt where no one will ever see it. It’s no secret that I adore slip stitch colorwork and it occurred to me that I might be able to develop a pattern that looked like stranded work but actually only involved using one strand of yarn per row. The trick was to change colors at the beginning of every round – something that can only be done if you are working in the round.

Can you believe that these mitts are created by knitting stripes and slipping stitches? Seriously, the primary stitches involved in this pattern are knit, purl, and slip. There are a few make 1s to create the thumb gusset, but all of the patterning is slip stitch colorwork. There are no floats to manage, no yarn to carry along the inside. If you would like to hear me talk more about these mitts and the process that went into developing them you can check out my Pattern Tour video on my YouTube channel Watch Barbara Knit.

And the softness? It really has been turned up to eleven. After blocking the yarn blooms into an amazing halo and the urge to pet them is very, very strong. The pattern is written for sizes Small, Medium, Large, and Extra Large with the shown mitts being Mediums. The samples took just about half of each 50 g skein, so you have plenty of yarn for another project or you can extend the cuff for a more gauntlet effect for the mitts if you so desire.

The urge to knit another pair in another color combination is very strong but hopefully y’all will put together some amazing choices so that I can see the amazing variety that is possible with Anzula’s extensive palate. I have already been asked if I feel that these mitts would work for guys as well and I have to say 100% yes. You could go super subtle and combine neutrals like Elephant and Sexy or go super high contrast while sticking with different shades of the same color like Storm and Gravity. It’s really hard to go wrong.

You can find Serenity at these shops:
McKnittey.com - Online only
Amazing Threads - Maple Grove, MN
Bliss Yarns - Brentwood, TN
Knit One Purl Two - Rockford, IL
Knitting Store - Oceanside, NY
Knitting to Know Ewe - Newton, PA
Needle Tree - Greenville, SC
Spun - Ann Arbor, MI
Woolly & Co - Birmingham, IL and online
Yarn Garden - Charlotte, MI

We have more Serenity in the dye pots for Loops and Yarn Kandy, and more shops so check back for updates.

As always, you can place a special order at your local Anzula shop for any of our yarns, we will dye it just for you and send it to your LYS.

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Pattern Spotlight: Argyroneta

Hi I’m Barbara Benson and I am so excited to be able to introduce y’all to my new summer shawl in Silken! Argyroneta is a fast and easy knit that is super flexible when it comes to yardage and gauge. It is the perfect pattern to carry along on your summer adventures or simply to knit night when you want to do a bit more chatting than paying attention to your pattern.

Argyroneta Shawl.

As a designer I have a wee hoard of yarns that are “on my list”. Beautiful yarns that spoke to me when I saw them and I just had to acquire them even if I didn’t have an immediate idea what their special purpose would be. This summer I decided that I had to realize the potential of several of these skeins, mostly because I really, really wanted to knit with them.

This skein of Silken (color Lapis) was calling to me and couldn’t wait to become … something. But luckily I had an idea, and a rather simple one at that. What would happen if I moved the lace that typically trims the bottom of a shawl up to the top where it could frame the wearer’s face? The more I thought on it the more ideas I had that simply had to be pursued.

Lace along the top edge, "face framing lace!"

Also contributing to the design was the fact that it is summer and I wanted simple knitting. Once I started swatching with the beautiful 50% silk/50% merino blend that Silken brings to the table I knew that it was a perfect match for my plans. Some squooshy garter paired perfectly with the openwork created with double yarn overs in this straightforward lace.

And when I say straightforward I mean it. After you finish the set-up (which is pretty short) there is literally a two row repeat! By working the shawl on the bias the shaping does all of the heavy lifting. The stitches added to the right side increase just enough to offset the lace pattern so that you are working the same two rows over and over again until you’ve had enough or a fixin' to run out of yarn.

Argyroneta, from the back.

Argyroneta, from the back.

I chose to knit my sample for Argyroneta with only one skein and I was pleasantly surprised at my end size. But if you would like a larger shawl it would simply be a matter of adding on another skein and continuing to knit!

Perfect for summer!

Now that this shawl is done I have started looking towards the Fall and knitting something that is a bit … snugglier. The lovely people at Anzula have said that it is OK for me to give y’all a little sneak peek at something I am working on in their decadent new 100% cashmere yarn Serenity.

Sneak peek: fingerless mitts in Serenity!

I do like things easy so I am working on a pair of fingerless mitts that look like stranded knitting but are actually created using a slip stitch technique. No carrying multiple yarns along a row - simply knitting stripes and slipping stitches. I don’t have a name yet but be on the lookout! You can follow me on Instagram to make sure you don’t miss anything new!


You can find Silken at the following shops, all of which would be happy to ship to you:

Knitting Off Broadway - Fort Wayne, IN
Twisted Ewe - Garden City, ID
Knitorious - St Louis, MO
Knit 1 - Chicago, IL
Stitch Niche - Lexington, KY
Fancywork - Bend, OR

You can find Serenity at these shops:
McKnittey.com - Online only
Woolly & Co - Birmingham, IL and online
Knitting to Know Ewe - Newton, PA
Yarn Garden - Charlotte, MI

We have more Serenity in the dye pots for Amazing Threads and Yarn Kandy, and more shops so check back for updates.

As always, you can place a special order at your local Anzula shop for any of our yarns, we will dye it just for you and send it to your LYS.