Celebrating 200 Years of Pride & Prejudice

Ahhh, 200 years since Lizzy & Darcy got married 🙂

It’s time for a BBC/Jane Austen marathon! Of course the most appropriate way to celebrate the 200th anniversary of Pride & Prejudice is to read the book. But that does present a problem if you’re trying to read & sew or knit at the same time. Perhaps an audio book. Then again, an audio book doesn’t feature Colin Firth.

Colin Firth as Fitzwilliam Darcy. Yeah, you want him.

To celebrate this bicentennial I finally finished the Chawton Mittens from the 2011 Jane Austen Knits magazine. I’ve actually been wearing them since December, but didn’t get around to fixing the mistakes I made in the silhouettes until now.
Chawton Mittens
The basic pattern is easy enough once you’ve memorized it. But my problem was putting the mittens down & not picking them up to finish the second one until a month or two later. I just couldn’t get my tension right when I started them again, so ended up ripping out & re-knitting a stretch of the second mitten about four to five times. Yikes. Glad these are finished now! Whew.Palms of the Chawton Mittens

This was my first time doing a lot of color work & I really grew to like it. It’s also my first successful project that involved cables- they might be hard to see since they don’t look like traditional knotted or Aran cables, but they make up the white border around the silhouettes.

Chawton Mitten Silhouettes
The color of the mittens is a cross between the brighter blue in the above photos & the lighter blue in the ones below.

These mittens were another exciting first too- conductive thread! The thread was kind of hairy & very coarse. I worked it in as a combo of knit stitches & like roositud color work. It works OK, but I may go in & add more. It’s just not as responsive as I would like.

The silver/gray thread on the tip of the finger is conductive thread.
The silver/gray thread on the tip of the finger is conductive thread.

I learned a lot from making these mittens & now am excited to make more cabled & fair isle projects. My only regret is that I used two different yarns for this project & the white yarn pills a lot. A lot a lot. But they have held up to public transit well enough. Detail of Chawton Mittens Colorwork

To Jane Austen! She has influenced generations of readers in ways she never could have imagined. Who would have thought her works would inspire knitting magazines?


17 thoughts on “Celebrating 200 Years of Pride & Prejudice

  1. Wow, they’re fantastic! You’ll get a lot of comment irl on these. Just don’t lose them (or, don’t lose just one, which imo is a lot worse….)

  2. These are such a cute blend of modern and Regency love…great job, and way to persevere and fix your mistakes! I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have bothered, and then I would’ve just hated the mittens every time I wore them. And I’m totally with you on the lack of Colin Firth being a major downside to audiobooks!

    • I tried on a pair of gloves in a store years ago with those conductive dots & they didn’t seem to work. But, I’m guessing they’ve come a long way if you’re recommending them. Do you know where they might be found? I suppose I could always try & thrift a pair for repurposing. Thanks for the advice!

  3. You made my day with this post – because my sister designed those mittens! I tweeted to her that you made them, so if she hasn’t already seen then on Ravelry, she’ll be over to check them out here! Your version looks beautiful, and I love that you incorporated conductive thread in them. It’s the perfect mix of modern and traditional! Well done, and thank you for posting about them!

    ps. here’s my sister’s knitting blog, btw: http://anniebeeknits.wordpress.com/

    • Well, you’ve certainly made my day, too! What an utter delight to see my pattern “in the wild” — and you’ve knit these beautifully. I love that the conductive thread makes them useful for ultra-modern reading, while the cameos tie them to that 200-year-old story. Bravo! ::wild applause::

  4. wow, the detailed pattern in those mitts is stunning, and the silhouettes are perfect!
    i love jane austen, too, and watched the colin firth/bbc series while running on my treadmill last winter – a great way to pass the miles.

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