Cold Hands, Warm Heart

You know that saying, “cold hands, warm heart?” I come from a family of chronically cold-handed people, which I suppose means we all have warm hearts.


I used to get up before dawn and go skiing with my dad and brother. We’d pile into the car while the sky was still a deep navy, ski equipment rattling around in the back, eyes heavy, the air so cold that even with the heater on full blast we could still see our breath. By the time we’d get to the slopes, the sun was just slipping over the mountains, making it go from bone-chillingly cold to just plain old freezing.

We’d strap on our skis and head up on the chair lift, always starting the first run together then meeting up later for lunch. Often my dad would stay with me through the morning and those insanely cold starts made it worth it, just to get that time with him on the chair lift. We’d sometimes see my brother flying down the mountain from the lift, yelling and waving wildly to get his attention, but it was usually just my dad and I huddled together for warmth and talking. No matter what I did, my hands were always ice blocks, no matter how many layers I’d wear inside my mittens. My dad had the same problem.


As you read last month, my son is a notorious mitten-loser. He loses mittens faster than I can wrangle them on his tiny hands and therefore runs around the playground with freezing cold digits.

My husband likes to bike to the Metro, and while I think it’s great exercise and it cuts his commuting time down, he’ll often come home at night with hands so cold he can’t feel them. After some demands suggestions from me to wear something on his hands, he’s finally become amenable to the idea.

In honor of all the men in my life that are important to me, I’ve designed a FREE pair of fingerless mitts or “wristers” as I like to call them, for these gentlemen. Designed after much conversation with my husband about what he looks for in hand wear, we noticed that most of the wrister patterns for men are boring and don’t fit properly in the thumb area. These wristers have a comfortable thumb gusset, a bit of color and ribbing making them stretchy enough to fit everyone nicely and cut out the chill.


“How about alpaca?” I asked him, as he sat sipping his cappuccino. Shrugging his shoulders, I took a hank of Cascade’s Eco Highland Duo and rubbed it on his neck. The neck test is key when knitting for someone. Does it itch? What’s their reaction? Do they flinch or grab it from you and start talking excitedly?

Cascade’s Eco Highland Duo is one of the most buttery undyed baby alpaca and undyed baby merino wool blends out there. Beyond soft, you have to feel it to believe it. I want to just untwist a hank and wrap it around my neck to wear all day it’s so soft, or find a huge pile of it and take a nap. Coming in 7 beautiful natural colors (and 20 dyed colors if you want brighter options), everything about this yarn screams “Natural! Soft! Luxurious! Knit with me now!” I was only too happy to oblige.

After an enthusiastic yes from the husband regarding the yarn, the Men’s Cappuccino Wristers were born. Just shy of 200 yards a hank, there was definitely enough yardage left to get another pair out, making them the perfect gift for all the men in your life (with or without cold hands).


Since we’re beginning the transition into spring, why not knit a pair for everyone?

Download the free Men's Cappuccino Wristers pattern here.