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« March 2005 | Main | May 2005 »

April 26, 2005

If at first you don't succeed...

...you are going to be knitting that sucker over.

I tried. I really did try.

After my whining last week about my same old socks, I decided to strike out and try something different. I tried to not knit the same old sock. Unfortunately, I was not completely successful on the first try, or even the second.

When the latest issue of Interweave Knits arrived [Does anyone need that many shrugs? "I don't know," she says with a subtle lift of her shoulders.], I was attracted to the 'Go With the Flow' socks on page 96.

Aha! There it was, the sign that I should break out of my rather comfortable sock knitting rut in favor of an adventure in socky variety.

Goin' with the flow

The pattern calls for Cherry Tree Hill Supersock merino--which I know from experience is not entirely different from Koigu--and I just happened to have some Koigu destined to become socks anyway in a most springy colorway. Serendipity, I thought.

The pattern also calls for US1 sock needles. Perfect, that's what I use for knitting socks all the time anyway.

Cast on 60 stitches. Oh oh, the first twinge of doubt. I usually cast on 80 for socks that fit. Hmm, the pattern says this is a very stretchy stitch pattern. Ooookaaaay, I guess I'll just knit on and everything will be fine.

Bzzzt!! Wrong answer.

Although the socks knit up beautifully and I proved that I am indeed proficient at turning a heel, there is a problem. The cast on is too tight. Although they stretch enough to fit my foot, and presumably, my ankle, they do not stretch enough to fit over my heel. [See the sock on the left].

Flow_2Let us pause here and take a closer look at the cool ribbing [Click on the thumbnail for the extreme close-up].

Oh well, after a sigh and a small (unknitted) shrug I determined to try, try again. This time I cast on 60 stitches on US2 needles. [Is there a size available between US1 and US2, 2.5mm perhaps? I could really use a set of those].

Ugh, I hate knitting socks on 2s; the stitches are so flabby. I like my socks to be knit at a nice taut, perky gauge.

And sure enough, after turning the heel on this sock [and beautifully so, I might add], I determined that the gauge was just too loose. [See the sock on the right]. These sock would fit, but they would not wear well. The bottom of the heel would likely wear through in no time. Moreover, I reaffirmed that although I turn a lovely heel, I don't really like turned heels and I don't like how they fit on my foot. I have a short row heel foot.

So, what am I to do? I like the stitch pattern and the idea of having something different than my usual sock. However, I know that the same old sock will fit and wear the way I like.

Things I am considering:

  1. Giving up and knitting the same old socks yet again.

  2. Casting on more than 60 stitches on to 1s, knitting in the new stitch pattern, and doing a shortrow heel.

  3. Casting on 60 stitches and knitting the ribbing on 2s and knitting the rest of the sock on 1s with either a short row or turned heel.

  4. Some other combination or permutation of the above alternatives.
Any thoughts?

05:55 PM | Permalink | Comments (17)

April 23, 2005

classy

I've got class...a knitting class that is.

This year, I won't just be attending MS&W for the fiber; I'm also scheduled to take a class with Nancy Bush called Nordic Color: Inlay Technique from Estonia.

The description in the listing reads,

"Estonians use a special inlay technique for decorating gloves and socks. It is similar to embroidery but is worked right into the knitting."

Sounds interesting, but I really don't have any idea what it's about. I signed up anyway. [I love taking classes; after all, look at how long I was in graduate school].

I tried looking around on the Internet for more information. I found this same description many times, but only one possible example. Last year about this time, Jessica attended Nancy's Discovering Estonian Knitting workshop and learned many techniques, none of which seems to exactly match the description. Perhaps it's the Roositud patterning that Jessica describes. I guess I will find out in two weeks.

No problem, I will show up ready and eager to learn a new technique that I will probably never apply; nevertheless, I will relish the chance to increase my knowledge.

07:20 PM | Permalink | Comments (3)

April 21, 2005

new pictures added

Lion
[Click for the full size pic].

I've added a few more pictures to the 'Flowers & Bees' gallery. You've probably seen the best ones already.

06:44 PM | Permalink | Comments (2)

April 18, 2005

untitled post #6

Fern

05:51 PM | Permalink | Comments (9)

April 17, 2005

knitted superhero costumes

If it hasn't already, this one is going to hit the knit blogs in 3...2...1...

Mark Newport melds the manly (?) mythos of superheroes with the unmanly (?) realm of knitting. The result: what Spidey wears when there's a little nip in the air.

Spidey

07:05 AM | Permalink | Comments (2)

April 16, 2005

I take it back

Dragons

OK, no need to make faces; you're all right. I shouldn't be so hard on my socks. They did turn out nicely, due in no small part to the lovely yarn from Spirit Trail Fiberworks.

Yes, Lara, someday you too can have beautiful blue socks like mine if you are a very good girl [ha!] and you will probably get a good look at mine on Wednesday.

Now, about my business trip out west:

I had a very good trip including a wonderful meal at Veritable Quandry

Vq

and a stop at Powell's Books.

Powells

The verdict? There is still a greater than 0.0 probability that I will be a resident of Portland, Oregon by the end of the year. However, we are still waiting to hear if all the approvals go through. I'll keep you posted.

05:04 PM | Permalink | Comments (3)

April 07, 2005

the catatonic knitter

Sorry for being such a lax blogger. Unlike some, I don't thrive on stress and deadlines; instead, I shut down. I've spent most of the past few nights sitting on the couch knitting and pretending to watch TV. I do that instead of the hundreds of other things I should be or could be doing.

I have a business trip coming up this weekend. I should be doing the dishes and washing clothes. I should pack. Bleh.

I could be taking pictures of what I've been knitting or writing an entry. Blah.

OK, here's a picture of the socks I finished, oh, two weeks ago. Same old socks. Blah blah blah.

new socks

See, this is what I mean about not being able to say anything nice.

I'm going back to the couch.

05:27 PM | Permalink | Comments (8)

April 05, 2005

if you can't say anything nice...

11:35 AM | Permalink | Comments (4)

April 03, 2005

swatch

As much for my own records as anything, I will tell you that my swatch was knit with Peruvian Collection Highland Wool available (when it is available) from elann.com.

The ball band suggests a 4" gauge of 19 sts. and 24 rows on 4.5mm (US 7).

I got a gauge of 19-1/2 sts. and 29 rows on 4.0mm (US 6).

02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (3)

April 01, 2005

what kind of fool am I?

Wait. Don't answer that.

First, let's review what's been going on [knitting-wise].

I started to reknit the sleeve of the Colour Your Own sweater and then got restless.

I finished my Everyday cardigan.

Flush with that success, I started a scarf and a sweater and swatched for a sweater I'm going to 'design' myself.

Ah, yes, that's what kind of fool I am.

Here's the swatch. At least I'm not enough of a fool to think about designing a sweater without knitting (and washing) a swatch first.

Fascinating, isn't it?!

04:58 PM | Permalink | Comments (3)