We'll be snowed in this weekend, riding out a historically significant storm, but my feet will be nice and warm in these felted slippers. They're called pichots (pea-shoos), and according to Michele at Fiberphilia, they were traditionally knitted by the matriachs of French Catholic families in New Brunswick and Aroostook County. I couldn't find any mention of their cultural roots online, (though googling turned up numerous opportunities to "check out this pic—HOT!") but it's easy to imagine northern mémères keeping toes warm with these quick, easy felted slippers.
The construction is basic: knit several inches on straight needles, for what will become the heel and open part of the slipper. Then join the fabric and knit in the round, right on down the foot, eventually reducing the number of stitches toward the toe. Sew up the back, knot up loose ends, and voilà! The slippers are ready for felting in the washing machine.
These green and purple pichots, a Christmas gift for my mother, were my first felted project. Man, is felting magical. In two washings, this men's slipper will go from Shaq-sized:
...to a snugly size 10.
With bulky yarn, a pair of women's pichots should take no more than 8 hours, perfect for a weekend project, and for using up bits of leftover yarn.
Stay warm this weekend, mon ami!