This Woman Knits Blankets With Super-Sized Yarn and Her Bare Hands

Anna Marinenko
Anna Marinenko

When the weather is especially brutal, there's nothing like crawling under a chunky, wool blanket to stay warm. Anna Marinenko takes that idea of comfort to a new level by knitting with yarn so thick she had to swap out needles for her bare hands.

Marinenko was inspired to knit her first super-sized textile in 2015 when she began experimenting with Australian merino wool yarn. "Once I discovered merino wool, I became obsessed with its softness, tenderness, and airiness," she tells Mental Floss.

She resorted to knitting together the 3-inch stitches with her hands because none of the needles she owned were suited for the material. Today, the Ukraine-based designer sells her creations on Etsy under the shop name Ohhio, and she has found plenty of customers who share her excitement about the unique material. "People love our chunky knits," she says. "There's not a day that goes by when we don't receive compliments from happy customers. I'm happy to have reached so many people who value making things with their hands."

In addition to blankets that look like giant handkerchiefs, Marinenko also sells scarves, hats, and even beds for cats and dogs, all knit in her characteristic chunky style. For anyone looking to knit a cozy creation of their own, merino wool yarn skeins and custom 2-inch thick needles are also available on her Etsy page.

All images courtesy of Anna Marinenko

Wednesday’s Best Amazon Deals Include Computer Monitors, Plant-Based Protein Powder, and Blu-ray Sets

As a recurring feature, our team combs the web and shares some amazing Amazon deals we’ve turned up. Here’s what caught our eye today, December 2. Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers, including Amazon, and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we only get commission on items you buy and don’t return, so we’re only happy if you’re happy. Good luck deal hunting!

Never Got a Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine as a Kid? You Can Still Buy One This Holiday Season


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Even as toys have gotten more complex in recent decades, one low-tech item has held a perennial spot on holiday wishlists. The Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine was a hit when it debuted in 1979, and kids and nostalgic adults can still get their hands on one this December.

People who grew up in the 1980s may remember commercials promoting the “yum-yum fun” plastic appliance. Like the Easy Bake Oven and the Frosty Sno-Man Sno-Cone Machine before it, the Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine allowed kids to make edible treats at home. The Peanuts branding made the toy popular with kids, and despite the elbow grease required to crank a couple of ice cubes into shaved ice, it's stuck around.

If you asked for a Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine for the holidays as a kid and never received one, you can still make your childhood dreams come true. The retro product is available practically unchanged from how it appeared in the 1980s. The biggest changes are that the hand crank is now easier to turn and there's a clamp for stabilizing the machine while you use it. Get one for yourself or a loved one from Amazon today for $30.

Looking for more nostalgic gift ideas? Here are some items the Millennials in your life will love.