I knit my first pair of mittens. 2 pairs actually. and a lone mitten that ended up being too small so I never did the match to it LOL. I consider myself to be an intermediate knitter and can do the more difficult stitches and patterns without problem, but things like mittens and socks intimidate me. Why? I blame the dpns. I don't like them, but I am working on it. The mittens turned out great, no "ladders" where the needles met, so I have more confidence now. However, Scott ordered me the harmony interchangable circulars from www.knitpicks.com (one of my favorite sites!) and he even said he wouldn't make me wait until Christmas to play with them!! I've been dying to try this "magic loop" technique with circular needles but mine have cords that are too stiff. I did manage to do the top of a hat, but it didn't look the greatest. The knitpicks needles have, from what I've heard, much thinner and more flexible cords. Plus the harmony needles are wood (my current set is aluminum) and are stained beautiful multicolored. I can't wait to get them!!
Anyway, the mitten pattern I used is here: http://www.woolfestival.com/patterns/children_mitten.htm
I used simply soft yarn from caron, and did a set for Meg in pink and purple and even used duplicate stitch on the stripe to put M. Then I did a pair for Brendan in orange and neon green, using #6 needles instead of #3 and increasing the thumb by 2 rows and the stripe by one. I also crocheted the sets together with a long chain so they don't get lost. :-)
I am getting more and more comfortable with adjusting patterns and am even trying to write my own for a few things (see the coffee cozys a few posts down, which I have renamed "Greensleeves" in honor of Christmas and the 'green' eco-friendly movement). One thing about this blog that will be different from the rest--when you see a pattern written by me, there will NOT be a request from me stating that you may make one for you or a friend but please don't make one and sell. I don't really understand why people say not to sell them. I can see why they wouldn't want you selling the pattern itself, but when it comes to my designs, if you like it enough to want to make it and think it looks good enough to sell, that is a compliment to me and by all means please do! I've tried to be mindful of those types of requests when making things for my bazaar, even though the concept seems rediculous to me. I'm afraid the knitting police might get me LOL. So most of the stuff is stuff that didn't say that or stuff I got from pattern books etc. But when I design stuff and post it here, feel free to make it and sell it. All I ask is that when someone asks where you got the idea, please direct them to my blog :-)