söndag 14 juni 2015

Mittens from Mora (1909) in twined knitting

These are twined knitted mittens from Mora, Dalecarlia, Sweden. We were given these as a gift from a friend a couple of months ago. They once belonged to her father. Possibly a gift at his birth in 1909, or perhaps bought in 1919 when he spent a summer in Dalecarlia. I think that the first option is the more likely. These mittens are called "Moravantar" (Mittens from Mora) in Swedish and they are all patterned in the same distinctive fashion. The yarn used is s-plied, one white and one red. The red is a bit more loosely spun. The tension is 47 stitches to 10 cm  (4 inches). The yarn is made of wool and seems to be of a fairly good quality.
These were probably knitted to be sold as souvenirs to tourists. The placement of the name and the year are typical for this kind of mittens. On these mittens the name or initials of the recipient are substituted with "MORA".  Probably because the knitter knew they were to be sold to an unknown person. By looking at the surface of the fabric it is clear that the yarn used is not z-plied (and we have checked the yarn by close inspection), since it forms ridges on the fabrics surface. Using s-plied yarn could be due to various reasons. Since they were to be sold it would not be economic to use hand spun yarn due to the time it takes to produce. Industrial yarns were more available and the prices cheap. I have not heard of z-plied yarn for sale at this time in Sweden.
The mitten has no thumb gore, probably because it would interfere with the stitch pattern. The thumb is decorated with different patterns on its two sides. I am really glad to have these mittens. They are a hundred+ years old and a true heritage. Holding items like these and being allowed to examining them and having the time for a close look is always so inspiring.
It is interesting to compare them with these mittens from Nordiska Museet in Stockholm. They are similar but with reversed colours. Photo from Nordiska Museet, Digitalt Museum.

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