Gwen Bortner of Knitability taught me to make this. You may think it's a mitten for a Yeti. You'd be wrong on many levels.
Because of this, I now know:
The importance of using wood or plastic DPNs, at least when starting out. They are less likely to abandon your work in spite.
How to knit in the round and what happens if you twist your cast on.
How to join without twisting.
What a "working needle" is.
I know how to make yarn over increases and how to close the yarn over by twisting the stitch in the next round.
I know how to make a thumb gusset.
I know how to make a stitch holder if I don't have a "real" one.
K2TOG makes a right leaning decrease.
Together, well, at opposite ends of a row, they make mirror image decreases. Knitters are clever.
It will, eventually, be felted down into an oven mitt. After I fix the thumb.
Incredible. Six hours of class. I've crossed into a new world.
On to Yarn Substitutions with Kellie Nuss. A fundamental skill set. Vital. Necessary. The lifeline to grasp before going under (at least for those of us who succumb to yarn lust, or who are rarely happy with the yarn in the pattern). Okay. It's math. There's no getting around it. But it's math that works. Good math. The math that will, if I follow it, save me from the nightmare that is knitting thousands of stitches to make a sweater only to run out with mere hundreds of stitches left.
Plus we left with proof positive that changing the needle size and/or the stitch pattern really will change your gauge.
Swatches don't lie.