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Photo: Peter Bilak, Beermitten knitted by Pauline Kettlewood, Woool yarn store, The Hague

Beermitten — The Arctic

by Anne Miltenburg

Drinking beer outside in the sub-zero temperatures of an Arctic winter? Sure, why not, if your mittens can get a secure grip on a slick glass bottle or aluminium can (or if you don’t mind freezing your hands off). Enter the ølvotter, or beermitten. Its circular knitting forms a special pocket just right for a beer bottle or can. The beer drinker keeps his or her hands warm, and the beer is kept at the right temperature. Though its exact origins have not been established, the beermitten seems to have been in use for a number of decades in Nordic countries. Eminently practical, endlessly customisable and easily shared via free online knitting patterns, the beermitten has made its way across the Arctic via Norway, Iceland, the US, and Canada, all the way west to Alaska.

Download a free knitting pattern and make your own.

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