Knitting a Rainbow

Three things I learned from knitting this pair of socks.

1. You can’t stay blue when you’re knitting a rainbow. Try it. I dare you. Just staring at this riot of color is an amazing mood enhancer. And they make me happy when I wear them, too. Feeling blue? Knit a rainbow.

2. Don’t let too much time pass before knitting the second sock. Especially if the pattern is all improv and you aren’t taking good notes. It’s a bad idea. Ask me how I know. How do I know? Oh, I am so glad you asked. I was knitting the simplest of sock recipes with a very basic stitch pattern and I had to rip the second sock out twice because it wasn’t looking quite right. But now they are identical. Mostly.

3. When you have fat feet, 50 grams of sock yarn isn’t enough, even if you are only doing short-legged socks. Hence the yellow toes.

 

Another pair of socks for the sock drawer. It is still funny to me that I am knitting socks now. I never thought I would. I am so glad that I do.

Socks of my own design in Shibui Knits Sock Spectrum. Rav project page here (where I did eventually write down what I was doing).

 

Simple Pleasures

Handknit socks in Handmaiden Casbah. No pattern, just mindless knitting and amazing results.

Three things about this knit.

1. The pattern – I cast on 64, worked a 2×2 rib for about 1 inch, and immediately went to the heel. I was really excited to try out the sweet tomato heel and I was not disappointed. It is awesome. I worked 3 wedges of the sweet tomato heel, then knit the foot to 2 inches short of the length of my foot (maintaining a 6×2 rib over the top of the foot) and finished off with a regular toe and a kitchener graft over 10 stitches at the very end.

See the heel? Cool, huh?

2. The yarn – heavenly. The colors are splendid, the cashmere is so soft, this yarn is amazing. I could gush for pages but I will just say this one thing – get some. You’ll love it. Oh – and this little pair of socks used less than half, so I still have a good amount left over! Yippee!

3. The next time – This was the first time I have ever attempted to knit socks without a pattern and I am pleased with the results. Next time I need to remember a few things. One: knit a longer cuff. Two inches at least. Two: do something prettier than 6×2 ribbing. Three: Well, I guess that is it. These socks are pretty close to perfect.

Oh, and one more thing. After knitting and wearing several pairs of socks I have discovered that I tend to wear holes in my socks on the balls of my feet. I tried a new trick to reinforce these socks in that area and I will tell you all about it tomorrow.

Maeva

I had an epiphany. Are you ready? This one might blow your mind, not because it is particularly clever or new, rather because it took me so long to realize it.

Why do I knit socks with long legs when I clearly have a preference for ankle socks when I buy socks at the store?

How many times have I knit a pair of socks that take twice as much yarn and time as an ankle sock (which is what I’d really rather wear). And isn’t that the point of making socks? To make the perfect sock for me?  I mean, I don’t wear turtleneck sweaters, therefore I don’t knit turtleneck sweaters. I don’t wear long johns, therefore I don’t knit long johns. So, I made a decision mid-sock and knit a pair of socks that I would love to wear (fortunately for me, it was a toe up sock, so I could make that kind of a change).

Introducing my “Natalie Loves Me” socks (so named because this yarn was a baby shower gift from my knitting buddy who knows what makes me happy).

Maeva in Knit Picks Stroll Tonal, Foliage

Three things about this knit –

1. This yarn does what it does well. I am not saying that it is my new favorite, but for a pair of socks I think it will do just fine. I love the color and the way that I magically (and without trying at all) started each sock at exactly the same point in the colorway so that the semi-striping is perfectly matching. I love the sturdy feeling these socks have.

2. I learned many new things while knitting these socks, the least of which was the epiphany mentioned earlier in this post. I learned how to do Judy’s Magic Cast On, a truly wonderful trick. I learned that while toe up socks are fascinating, I would much rather start at the top and work down. I also learned that I actually do enjoy working socks one at a time (rather than both at once) and that knitting the second sock doesn’t have to be a painful chore (because this second sock was just as fun as the first). I guess you could say that these were educational socks.

3. I made many mistakes. Many. I mean it. A lot. I crossed cables willy-nilly with no thought to the way they were actually supposed to cross. I increased haphazardly. I decreased when I felt like it. I totally faked the heel flap without even peeking at the pattern. All of these mistakes are tiny, and really, (really) they make no difference (at all. whatsoever). I keep telling myself that I don’t care. But I do. (But not enough to frog them.)

Also, these socks are kinda baggy, which is weird because I have huge feet and every other sock I ever knit for myself has been tight. Maybe I can shrink them up a bit in the dryer. (note to self – next time do a smaller cuff)

All in all, a satisfying knit and a new pair of socks in my drawer. It’s been good week.