AccessoryFest 2010: Helping Hands Mittens

1960s Wool Plaid Mittens

These started as a stashbuster but at the urging of several friends, I wrote up the pattern to contribute to the Help for Haiti effort on Ravelry. I will donate all proceeds of the mitten sales to Haitian relief efforts for as long as the pattern is available. To be honest, I feel conflicted about urging people to buy things because portions of pattern sales will go to charity. If the cause is compelling, we should not be goaded into supporting it with cheap or free items. Perhaps I sound cynical; I do not mean to be. All I’m saying is that the best way for any of us to help in the earthquake relief and rebuilding efforts in Haiti is to give directly to reputable aid organizations doing good work. Buy my mitten pattern if you like the mittens, but if you really want to help, bypass me and give directly to aid organizations now. And, perhaps more importantly, give again in March. And in July. And in September. And in 2011 and 2012.

And of course, enjoy the mittens!

This pattern is available as a Ravelry download for $6.00. For the lifetime of the pattern, all proceeds will be donated monthly to Partners in Health’s Stand With Haiti campaign.

1960s Wool Plaid Mittens



Skills used

Reading a chart, knitting in the round, knitting with two colors, increasing, decreasing, picking up stitches.


S (M, L)

Model shown in size S.

Finished measurements

Circumference: 7.25 (8.5, 9.75)”
Length: 8.5 (9.5, 10.5)”
Thumb top length: 2 (2.5, 3)”


26 stitches and 28 rounds = 4″ in stranded stitch pattern on US 6 (4 mm) needles

1960s Wool Plaid Mittens


Berroco Ultra Alpaca [50% alpaca, 50% wool; 215 yd (197 m); 100 g skein]; color: #6289 Charcoal Mix (MC), #6201 Winter White (CC1), #6234 Cardinal (CC2), #6294 Turquoise Mix (CC3), 1 skein each.


US 6 (4 mm) circular needle, 32″ long or 1 set US 6 (4 mm) DPNs


Stitch markers
Waste yarn
Tapestry needle

1960s Wool Plaid Mittens

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10 comments so far

  1. Susan on

    I’m with you there. People should give directly to those organizations! Plus, if you buy the patterns, you are just assuming that the designer in question is actually donating, not just saying so and pocketing the money. It’s horrible to think of people taking advantage of such a horrible situation for their own gain, but it does happen from time to time…However, I think one benefit of having stuff for sale and auctions and other events that benefit organizations like PIH and DWB is the constant reminder to the public that the relief effort will always be in need of funding.
    In any case, lovely mitten pattern, good cause!

  2. Liz on

    LOVE these mittens… easy for me to visualize for stashbusting because I have the exact colors in my own stash. Thanks for another great pattern!

  3. April on

    I completely agree with you about donating to a cause, worthy or not, in exchange for anything. It’s rather sad that organizations have to resort to that tactic for funds.

  4. Chloe on

    Love the mittens, too, and I am usually not a fan of that much colorwork.

  5. Kendra Kaiser on

    I am looking for a knitter to create a hat. Would you consider taking on a hat project? If no do you have someone you would recommend? I have seen your work and am impressed. Your work is lovely and well made.
    I don’t know if you can access my e-mail. I will check back here for a response. I’m not a knitter and I just happened to find your site.

  6. GinkgoKnits on

    Those are fantastic mittens. I agree that the promotion of products with a portion of profits going to charity — partly because of the ridiculous abundance of such products since after awhile buying a product with a colored ribbon denoting “charity proceeds given” becomes meaningless, especially if it just generates more unnecessary stuff like those plastic bracelets. An electronic file though seems like the best possible sort of charity-related product that you offer and I’m sure your generosity won’t go unnoticed.

  7. Estella on

    Those mittens are fantastic!

  8. Mandy on

    I was sort of surprised that when I ended my Help for Haiti promo, pattern sales dropped off. Of course, I’m not sure if more folks were seeing the pattern through that channel, or if interest has just died down a bit.

    I love this mitten pattern. So glad you decided to publish it.

  9. Willemtje on

    I do confess to feeling better if I “get something back” for my charity donation. Like buying jam and books at the church bazaar! Somehow I am much more likely to part with my money that way! But don’t worry I also put money into the collection!

  10. Merri Fromm on

    Love your work: your patterns are beautiful and professionally written. Can’t wait to try one or 5 of them. If you think you might ever be interested in designing for Blue Sky Alpacas, I would love to chat with you. Drop me a line!

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