One of my dreams is to one day have a sock drawer full of handmade socks. I was reading Glenna C.’s blog one day and she wrote about how cool it was to open her sock drawer and see all handmade socks. That just sounded so cool that I decided I wanted that too.
That, of course, meant that I had to learn how to knit socks.
Which also meant that I had to learn how to make socks for Chip since if I was going to goof up on socks, I didn’t want it to be on mine. (grin).
I have previously blogged about my first pair of socks, that I made for Chip. What I may not have mentioned is that not too long ago we discovered that our puppy Tucker decided to express his undying devotion for Chip by eating everything that really smelled of him – which of course meant he had to eat every wool sock Chip owned – INCLUDING the pair I knit him. Sigh.
Which is what spurred me to make Chip his second (and now only) pair of handknit socks using the Knitty.com Thuja pattern. They turned out pretty good.
The thing I like about this pattern is one, it uses dk weight yarn rather than fingering weight so it knits up faster, and two, it uses a size 6 needle so it is finished even faster! I made these socks in about 10 days – which is like speed racing in my world of sock knitting. That part made me happy!!
Problems – the pattern states you should use worsted weight yarn but the gauge is a dk weight gauge so I went with a dk weight yarn – Regia’s Design Line Kaffe Fassett 6 ply which is also a washable sock yarn – and it worked out well. I also did not like the slip stitch the pattern calls for in the heel turn because it resulted in noticeable holes that I later had to weave yarn into to fill.
However, as a quick knit sock, this one will do the trick and you can use varigated yarns too because there is no pattern you are going to hide. Easy.
So then onto MY first pair of hand-knit socks. I showed you previously the beginning of my Moody Stockings which were designed by Erica Lueder – who is currently my favorite sock designer. Here is what they looked like completed – well – what one looked like completed. I made two, however Markus was doing the sock modeling that day and he just wasn’t feeling it, you know? So he only modeled one sock.
The other one looks just like it.
I like how the heel turned out.
It was also my first time using a kitchener grafting stitch.
It came out okay, but I am not sure I like how the kitchener stitch forms two points on the sides of your toes. I will have to give this more thought. Knitting these socks was made even more wonderful by the fact that I was knitting using Sanguine Gryphon’s Little Traveller yarn in the Rojas colorway. Absolutely wonderful yarn in a stunning deep red. They are just great yarn dyers.
THEN we get to the socks I am working on now.
First, the Ravelry Sock Knitters Anonymous group sucked me in on another mystery sock KAL (the Moody sock was their November mystery sock) so I have started the Sock Strap sock, designed by General Hogbuffer which is their mystery sock for March. I am using my Noro yarn (to use it up – I HATE the lack of quality of the Noro base yarns which no quality of dyeing can cover up) so I am only knitting one sock at a time in the hope I will be able to later find a repeat of the colors used in the first sock for the second. I think my chances of making matching socks is little to none.
Mystery socks are divided into four parts with each part provided weekly. The first clue had me knit the center back panel of the sock through the heel turn.
The second clue is the “strap”. I had to pick up stitches all along both sides of the sock and around the base.
Then from these stitches I had to knit out from the back panel to make the strap.
I am not loving this sock at all at this point. First, though the designer recommended that we use a Noro yarn with gradual color changes, it did not work with the way we are directed to pick up stitches along one side using a long strand you save at the beginning of the sock. By the time you are at the point that you are now working out the sides of the strap, the colors have changed drastically from what they were at the beginning – which is obvious from the one line of red that stands out like a sore thumb on one side of the panel that you will be able to see when worn. Sigh.
Second, at this point this design feature is not looking all that attractive. If you look at the outside of the Noro skein I bought, you can understand why I was not expecting to be knitting a teal and aqua sock. And I would not have put that aqua against the purple/denim blue. Sigh.
Third, the designer is not really clear on how to determine which size that is offered (of which there are 5 – from XS to XL) would be the correct size to knit for your size foot. I am making the size small, figuring that if it doesn’t fit me, Jesse will LOVE this crazy color combination. At least it should fit someone in this house.
But even this sock, knit on size 2 needles, is not my craziest sock endeavor yet. My craziest sock project is the one I am starting this week.
Knit on size 1 needles with fingering weight yarn!!
At least the yarn is Madelinetosh (collective sigh) in the “Ink” colorway and I am using the Dreamz circular needle in a 40″ length – magic loop method. I love the Dreamz needles. Beautiful wood, long narrow tips and not sticky when knitting with them.
But I still think it will be awhile before I am posting a project report telling you they are done.
Oh, and I did cast on a second Uhlan hat – this time for Vash using the Lorna’s Laces “Robot Overlord” yarn. We couldn’t resist the name for Vash. Here is just a quick look at how the colors are knitting up.
He’s quite happy about it.
So that is all on what is happening with socks in our house. I will leave you with a picture of the boys hanging out on their fort in the dog run during some of our March snow. Hope your March is feeling more like spring than winter.
Onward and Upward.