40 years and 5 days 

How long did those mittens take to make?

40 years and 5 days.

I finally got to use this answer the other night.  When I had mentioned to my sister Jill that I sometimes get rude comments regarding the speed of my knitting and I did not know how to answer the question of how long something took, she gave me this answer.  Mostly the questions are just curious or rhetorical.  There are sweaters that have taken me literally years to make, as I have lost interest in the knitting, hated sewing them up, or just moved on to the newest exciting project.  I guess people are trying to gauge my speed verses theirs.  In the past it has sometimes been accompanied by rude comments such as to whether I had a life or did anything else.  Admittedly, there are times when I have not had a non-knitting life, as when I was obsessed to finish my Polar Bear sweater in 2 weeks, or the birthday gift of a stranded Dale of Norway for my husband in 3 weeks.  But, those are the exceptions rather than the norm.

Back to 40 years and 5 days.  My sister is a potter (and recently rediscovered knitter), and when I told her about this she told me the story of Japanese Potters who spend an entire lifetime mastering a technique, and they can throw a perfect bowl in 5 minutes.  They answer the question of how long with “40 years and 5 minutes”.  So, my speed is a factor of a lifetime of knitting and loving it.

This is a hat that I am knitting up for my mother to go with the Potpourri mittens, using the same stranded pattern.  I hope to finish today and get this mailed out while it is still so cold here.  This is her first winter in years in the cold Michigan weather, and if I had thought about it, this would have made the perfect Christmas present.  Oh well, it is always nice to get a package in January also.


It is very cold here right now.  I wore my Polar Bear sweater for the first time on Monday to SnB, I finally sewed all of the ends in over the weekend.  It was too hot for that day.  But today, in our cold house, it should be just right.