Foxtail Icelandic Fingerless Mittens: A Woodfolk Pattern

After the dazzling display of leaves throughout the month of October, I always welcome the more subtle beauty of this grey and gold month. The wild blueberry fields are blazing with red, the tamarack trees (or larch) a brilliant orange/yellow. As you walk under them, the needles gently fall among your feet. Our walks have been so pleasant with cooler temperatures and the sun lowering himself in the sky. I do love November!

It’s also that solid month that all things wool come out of the quilted bags I have stuffed to the brim with our knits. Fingerless mitts, touques, cowls. The most practical for us is our fingerless mitts. Jamie and I are often going out to bring wood in, going for walks with a thermos and a camera, simply enjoying the beautiful outdoors in this quickly darkening month. I can’t tell you how many times I have found myself out in the woods cursing myself for underestimating how cold it was and not bringing them with me!

Foxtail fingerless Mitts at our wood pile

So, last year I knit up this very simple pattern with the intention of submitting it for a book which never saw the light of day. So many projects last year were cast aside. Last winter I was so excited about everything that I renewed my interest in a lot of my work. I had a few people ask me about this particular pattern so I decided to write out a pattern and knit a couple of pairs… and then the pandemic happened. And well, it sucked every ounce of interest in knitting and the shop completely out of me. I threw myself into gardening, books and learning some new skills.

Come this Autumn, I was asked to create a project that completely reinvigorated my interest and excitement over our knitting shop and all my creative endeavours (I’ll share with you next year what this project was, I completed it last week and am so excited to share with you but it will have to wait until 2021 :)) so slowly I began to re-visit some old patterns. So my friends, here is my Foxtail Icelandic Fingerless mitts!

Taking photos for an Etsy listing when this fluffy Pangur came to check in on us

My intention for these mitts was to make a simple but elegant looking pattern that would be achievable for beginners venturing into colourwork. Knit with Lett-lopi and just an interchange of 2 colours, it really is a good introductory pattern as well as just for any Icelandic wool lover πŸ™‚ I love, love, love knitting fingerless mitts with lopi wool because it allows me to explore colour combinations. Icelandic wool has such beautiful colours that perfectly represent different aspects of our rich and diverse natural world. Every walk I go on, I see 2 colours juxtaposed against eachother and think “I’d love to knit something with those colours!” it’s endless! It can be as simple as a steel grey sky against the moody ocean or reindeer lichen and stones. Nature is our greatest teacher.

Wild blueberry fields in rural Prince Edward Island
Black Sheep & straw pair I loved how these pairs matched the wood pile
Ash & Rust pair – the first pair I made last year.

I hope you like these mittens! Thank you very much for just coming by to see them and the photos that Jamie and I have taken over the past couple of days.

I have a lot more to share… really so much. Our lives are going through a lot of changes right now and I just want to hold on to some things before I share on here. I’m not being active mainly because of these changes and we are just busy.

I also just got a new phone as well so will likely start sharing more often. My old pixel would randomly shut off – especially when I was outside for some reason.  Planned obsolescence at its finest I suppose. I really held off getting a new phone once my old one started to malfunction because I was just fed up with that world of constantly upgrading and getting something new regardless of the cost to the environment, the people who manufacture the phones and the consumer. We are stuck in some unhealthy cycles but there are still things we can do, like joining nature for our entertainment! Making our own clothes and food, using our local libraries, consuming less in general, etc.

The 2 pairs I made recently – I wanted to stick to some very subtle colours and love how both of these turned out πŸ™‚
Trying to capture some Pre-Raphaelite vibes at our woodpile
How pretty do these look with the peeling birch bark!

And that is just what I’m planning to do now friends. It’s a beautiful, beautiful November day and by 5 oclock, it will be dark as night. Henry is patiently waiting (whining) beside me so I’m going to get out to a trail and walk and walk for awhile before dinner and an evening of old movies, knitting and playing mandolin.

Many blessings on everyone! Thanks for reading and peace ❀

Cotton grass in the mossy bog in November
The blueberry fields are so beautiful in November – there is such a stunning variety of colour
Procrastinating from Moving Wood vibe (i.e. posing for a picture)
This little munchkin came to see what we were up to πŸ™‚

10 thoughts on “Foxtail Icelandic Fingerless Mittens: A Woodfolk Pattern

  1. I’ve always loved the fox 🦊 tail patterns of maritime mittens. Thanks for sharing. Those blueberry fields are incredible – such an explosion of red variations!

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    1. Thank you Bonnie! And thank you so kindly for the review that you left – I just read it, it is really very helpful and I really appreciate it πŸ™‚

      I wonder if you received your spoon? I’m pretty behind answering on here but will do my best in the coming days, we have a lot of change ahead of us these coming weeks as I mentioned in my letter!

      Always happy to see your updates and I hope you’re doing well!

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  2. Hi Julia!

    Reading your post makes me long for an even calmer life, and a house far in the woods. πŸ™‚
    The mittens look beautiful. πŸ™‚ And I get why you love Icelandic wool so much. I have strateg using it way more, and really love the feeling, both wearing and working with the yarn πŸ™‚ It is fun to see those wild blueberry fields. We have lots of wild blueberries here, but they are rarely so intense red.

    All the best wishes for you on the new things in your life. I hope they make you happy πŸ™‚

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    1. Awh Camilla!

      Thank you very much! I also long for that cottage life in the woods – perhaps some day we will both have it πŸ™‚

      I honestly had no idea that Norway had blueberries! I always thought they were only in North America, so that is interesting! They are everywhere in Atlantic Canada – so delicious and such a beautiful fall plant.

      I will update soon about new things, I’m feeling very happy these days regardless of how dystopian our lives have started to be (but when I walk out in the forest and don’t pay attention to media – it doesn’t feel so very different at all ;))

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      1. We do have lots of blueberries all over the country. It used to be very common to pick your own years supply of blueberries in the woods during late summer. When I was a child we always went blueberry picking with my grandparents. A lot of people still do πŸ™‚

        Not reading the news too often, and spending time in nature sure is the best medicine right now πŸ™‚ Hope you are safe and well πŸ™‚

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  3. Love your new pattern, Julia! My old go-to fingerless mitts are wearing out thanks to the dog leash, so these Foxtail mitts will be on my needles very soon. Now I am having fun running through colour options….

    November is a favourite month of mine too, with its subtle colours and verge-of-winter temperatures. But right now we are having summer-like warmth here — so strange! Best wishes for all your endeavours. xo

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