Vermont's Finest (Bernie's Mittens) by Meg Harlan

Vermont's Finest (Bernie's Mittens)

January 2021
Aran (8 wpi) ?
18 stitches = 4 inches
US 7 - 4.5 mm
US 6 - 4.0 mm
219 - 656 yards (200 - 600 m)
One size (adjust gauge for other sizes)
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This pattern is available as a free Ravelry download

Bernie Sanders’s iconic inauguration mittens!

Note: Pattern has been updated with basic instructions and a clearer chart

This is a mitten pattern inspired by the mittens worn by Bernie Sanders at the Biden Inauguration (and on the campaign trail), given to him by Jen Ellis. For more information on the mittens, see this article in the LA Times or check out @BerniesMittens on twitter. Jen Ellis makes mittens out of reclaimed wool sweaters and fleece made from recycled bottles! How cool is that for practical sustainable fashion!

Pattern: This is a basic mitten chart, in the Norwegian selbu mitten style, with some alterations to the shape. One chart is provided, to be knit in reverse for the second mitten. The pattern uses 5-6 colors of yarn.

Techniques: For a good basic intro to selbu mittens, check out Norwegian Selbu Mittens by Stefanie Canich. The same basic instructions should apply to this chart.

Sizing: The size written at the recommended gauge fits me (my palm circumference is ~7.5 inches). Sizing adjustments can be achieved by sizing up or down in needle size. Length can be easily added/removed by increasing/decreasing the number of MC rows before and after the white crosses in the middle of the mitten.

Design notes: I tried to keep the pattern on the back of the mitten as true to the photos as I could, however, this pattern is different from Bernie’s actual mittens, as the patterning wraps all the way around the hand, whereas Bernie’s have dark colored fleece palms. I designed a thumb based off the visible grey thumb of Bernie’s pair, however they are slightly different.

Yarn: I recommend Ístex Léttlopi Icelandic wool, as it is an excellent and warm choice for mittens of this style.

$$$: This pattern is free, but if you would like, I welcome you to make a donation to a local mutual aid fund or other organization doing good in your community. Here are some organizations local to me that I recommend:

Free99 Fridge Atlanta
Southerners on New Ground
R.E.S.I.S.T. - Supporting formerly incarcerated Black womxn
Fair Fight Action
The New Georgia Project

This free mitten pattern has not been tested, tech edited, or otherwise proofed. I haven’t even knitted them myself yet, so I have no idea how they’ll turn out. I may revise and update the pattern once I knit myself a pair!

Happy knitting!