Back in January of 2009 Grace contacted me through Ravelry and asked if I would consider designing gauntlet and mitten blockers. She had finished knitting Bella’s Mittens (free PDF pattern on the blog) and was having trouble blocking them properly. So I measured my hand and drew up a preliminary design to cut.
It never ceases to amaze me in the design process, where things that percolate in my brain, don’t seem to reach any logical ‘that’s not right’ conclusion. And it wasn’t just me, I was bouncing ideas off of a friend, and neither one of us saw it coming…
Once the design was cut we both just laughed, because what came out was about the size of a small dog body. Mind you I don’t have abnormally large hands, but something disengaged in the brain, as it sometimes does, even with 2 brains working on it. Waste not, want not – I shall call it the first ever Dog Sweater Blocker! Apparently there isn’t much of a demand for dog sweater blocking, so if you have a particular penchant to blocking, these are still available.
Design Process Round #2 – Next I decided to measure some of my finished knitted mittens and use those for a template. This was a much better idea and resulted in an improved product. I like to add functionality to my designs. My thought process constantly revolves around form and function, so instead of cutting an arbitrary shape, why not have it be something useful, with added value.
This blocker design includes WPI gauges for the thumbs, a metric and US knitting needle gauge as well as a diz for spinning! These were a great hit among knitters who also spin. After these were out for a bit, I had a request from a customer who loved them but would like a version to narrow the cuff, because in the blocking process, that part of the mitten was being stretched – Duh! Another brain failure. It makes you wonder how the design process of the car went through the years.
Not everyone needs or wants all the extra doo-dads that came with this design, so I streamlined it and made a version of the mitten blockers that just has WPI gauges in the thumbs.
To complete Grace’s request for both mitten blockers and gauntlet blockers, I created a much longer version. These are wonderful for blocking wrist warmers too.