Showing posts with label Socks. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Socks. Show all posts

20 October 2008

First Time*

The first time I knit a sock I didn't realize it was such a big deal for people. I decided to make a birthday stocking (like a Christmas stocking) for Isobel, so just a really big sock in worsted weight yarn: shocking pink Malabrigo to be exact. So soft and shockingly pink. I followed the pattern I had for normal socks (the great Family Socks from Yankee Knitter), using bigger yarn and needles but the same stitch counts for the sake of my sanity.

Seemed kind of like no big deal. Why were some people so obsessed with knitting socks? And why were others so flummoxed by "turning the heel"? I guess I turned the heel. I mean, the thing had a place for a heel. Well, if you were a giant anyway.

It's kind of like cooking. Why are people so impressed with a home-cooked meal. If you follow the recipe (and don't lose your head), you should come up with a reasonable facsimile of dinner. But people are so impressed when you follow directions. Does no one else follow directions? I'm the only one, aren't I. Being the good girl isn't always easy, but I do end up with a tasty dinner. And socks with heels.

There are heel-less socks, though, called bed socks. Just a tube with a closed toe. They don't fit well in shoes but are cosy for bed or padding around the house.

I haven't knit any of those yet, though I'm finally (three years later) making a pair of socks for myself. The yarn is a gorgeous colorway from Madeline Tosh called Twilight, with shocking pink (again with that color), navy, and brown and green in between: the pink of sunset-tinged clouds, the blue of the night sky, and the dusky shade of the trees as the light fades.

These will be special socks just for me, unlike the socks I made for Peter. He was in rehab, and it seemed like the right thing to do, make him a pair of socks. I even followed the old wives' tale and knit a strand of my hair and one of Isobel's into the socks. It's supposed to bind the recipient to you. (Should have noticed the other one about knitting socks for your boyfriend: he'll walk out, but he was my husband.) So, it seemed like the right thing to do, since he was going to come back home. No one had asked me if I wanted him to. The good girl would, of course. Funny how that didn't work out. Making that pair for him. Does he still have them? Does it matter?

The pair for me are knit differently, toe-up to use as much of the gorgeous yarn as possible and with a short row heel to avoid picking up stitches, which I tend to do badly. His were just a lesson in construction, and I've learned a lot since then.

*I've just started a memoir writing class, and one of the exercises we did was to write about something we did for the first time. This was my essay. The photo is of the start of my second sock. I used Judy's Magic Cast-On, which I learned knitting up the Amy March Slippers around Mother's Day. It creates a toe that fits my pointy feet very nicely. And I used a short-row heel gleaned from various places online, including Wendy's Generic Toe-Up Sock.

13 September 2007

Feathers and Fans

Crazy feather yarn I purchased at Whitefish Bay Farm. The Turkey Feather Yarn was crafted by Fiber Artist Laurie Boyer in Wisconsin and consists of turkey feathers, Salish x English Leicester wool, and cotton thread. I have ten yards and am thinking of some sort of scarf/necklace thing to wear to a charity fashion show next month with a grey wrap dress.

And here is some 100purewool yarn for Elizabeth Zimmerman's Baby Surprise Jacket from The Opinionated Knitter in Pasionaria for my brother-in-law-in-law's new baby girl (that would be my brother's wife's brother's baby). I haven't done one of these yet, but the yarn has been sitting in my stash for a while and needs knitting, and I think the variegated yarn should look lovely in this pattern.

And here is the Zephyr DK (which I consider more of an aran or knitting worsted) at the start of my Slouchy Cardi. First sleeve is complete, and I cast on for the back last night. I've come to the conclusion that for me, now, knitting stockinette back and forth is sometimes easier on my wrists than in the round a la Cobblestone. Knitting in one piece means you have the weight of all the yarn on your needles, even though it's distributed along the circular needle. Some knit-bloggers extol the virtues of top-down raglan knitting, but with Cobblestone I realized that I like knitting the sleeves and then attaching them to the body, rather than knitting the sleeves once the body is complete.

Loving the yarn! The sheen! The texture! I foresee more Zephyr in my future.

As for fandom, the new Knitty is up! Neiman would give me an outlet for the two skeins of Debbie Bliss Pure Silk in Turquoise sitting in the stash. And it's a bottom-up seamless raglan. How apropros! And I haven't done any stranded colorwork yet, so this would be good. The other appealing pattern at first blush is Cinderella. I started a pair of socks recently using the Yankee Knitter family sock pattern (#29 at the bottom of the page) and some nice sock yarn from Laughing Rat Studio. I started out OK but got bored (sorry, sock knitters of the world!). But Cinderella may kindle an interest in socks again. I really like that heraldic pattern and had tagged it in my copy of BW's Second Treasury. Plus these are knit on US4s!

05 March 2007


What a horrible name for a beautiful-looking pattern. Why didn't Norah Gaughan call it the Starfish Shrug or something? Anyway, would someone, please, for the love of wool, take my computer away from me? I am obsessing over yarn choices for the Capecho at Webs, thanks to listening to Ready, Set, Knit on the way in to work this morning. They have the original yarn (Berocco Pure Merino) but only have four balls of ecru (24 balls of ice grey). They also have Queensland Uruguay DK on clearance, and enough of the cream color to work. I made the first Hourglass Sweater from #8 (the pale blue), and it's a nice yarn. Then there is Vermont Organic's O-Wool in either Oatmeal or Sky. I love the idea of this yarn, and it has good yardage for the price. But I have been seeing a lot of grey for fall out in the fashion world, so maybe grey is the way to go. It would have to be a light grey, since I want the cables and construction to show nicely. Oh, man, what about Valley Yarns Colrain in Steel? The Tencel gives it a nice sheen, no? When I make this, I think I'll go longer on the sleeves.

I finished up the socks for my husband from the Yankee Knitter Classic Sock Pattern. They came out nicely, though I had a couple of holes on one side of the second sock where I must have picked up the stitches funny. I fixed 'em up afterwards, and it will be our little secret.

The Sheep 3 Shrug is coming along nicely after I frogged the first attempt. I just wasn't feeling the love, so I did some more math and adjusted stitch counts and whatnot. I also added some yarnovers between the neck ribbing and stockinette sections, which I may use to thread a ribbon for closure or just leave alone. Remember the ribbon obsession? I may call this the YO shrug. Teehee.

Oh, the reason someone should take the computer away? I have more than enough yarn, people! I picked up my Schaeffer Elaine in Jane Adams order Thursday afternoon at Yarns in the Farms and grabbed a couple of skeins of Blue Sky Alpacas Brushed Suri in Pink Lemonade to do Pam Allen's lace shrug from the Spring Interweave Knits Staff Projects. I like the GGH Soft Kid called for in the pattern but have longed to find something to do with that Brushed Suri (suri, merino, and bamboo, for wool's sake!). And I'm excited for the color and a chance to do some lace, since I don't have time in my life right now to commit to a shawl.

Icarus? Kiri? Print o' the Wave? Stop that.