Friday, May 31, 2013

SockMania -- Almost A Pair!

OK, so you hit the wrong button and you have to start over. Story of my life, right??

So the Robin's Egg sock is almost done. I've turned the heel, finished the foot and am working on the toe decrease. Standard decrease, and then maybe on the next pair, I'll try a different heel and different toe, just for fun. 

I also bought some pale blue Cascade 220 heather to begin another pair of hiking socks; using up the remaining purple as cuff, toe and heel on these. It's fun to mix it up, and if they look weird? Well, they'll be in hiking boots, right?

Turning the heel
Here are the first batch of pics from Robin's Egg. I started turning the heel using the instructions from the Madeline Tosh "Simple Socks" pattern by Amy Hendrix. Check it out here. As I noted, this is a "Franken-Sock" because I'm using several different sources. Kind of adventurous for me, but then again: look at the colors here, people!! I'm kind of a vanilla personality (yes, really I am) so if I can do "wild socks" then I'm expressing myself that way. Particularly "wild-knit-by-me" socks.  Again, my favorite needles: Kollage square DPNs. Made in USA. Very, VERY sharp points! I ended up buying some sheep needle protectors, but I'm not sure whether I'm protecting the needle tips or protecting me! Either way, they're cute and useful.

Heel turned
You can see that the sock colors kind of puddle at the heel. But it's a pretty shape, and it was easy to do if you kind of disengaged your logic and did what the instructions said, when they said to do it. Heel turning is "magic" no matter how you do it, and I'm always, always surprised! So was Hubby, who said, "Hey, that looks like a sock!" No stopping him, right? I'm glad he's noticing what I'm knitting. Or maybe not, if he keeps nosing in The Stash...

Back of heel
As we see the back of the sock, you can see how the colors blend here. It's not the spiral look on the cuff; it's also not a very dense heel. I'm hoping it holds up well since I didn't do a run-along support thread. And I paid an arm and a leg for the MadTosh yarn! I don't want to have to darn quickly, so they may become "clog socks" so that I prevent heel wear and tear. 

Using the Kollage needles has been good for my hands, and yeah, in spite of my usual cynicism about advertising claims, the stitch tension is really nice. A slight brag, but usually, I do get good tension. I just notice that with these needles, there are no ladders, and the stitches are very uniform. Huzzah!

Starting the foot
As I finished the gusset, the colors kind of evened out. You can see here that there was some puddling, but I wasn't worried about it. I knew it would even out once I was in a regular flow, so that the stripes would continue (you'll see that in a little bit). The gusset was a little longer than I thought it should be, but then the pattern for the toe decrease is more gradual, too. We'll see how it looks. All I have to do is make another one - I don't ever have to do this again if it looks weird. 

The heel
The heel, close-up - you can see that it's pretty basic, and not as triangular on the bottom as a lot of them are. They had me pick up the same number of stitches as were rows knitted, so it's a 28-stitch gusset. Kind of long, but it worked. I used a crochet hook. Sorry, perhaps lazy, but that's the easiest way for me to do it. You can see on the "heel" picture that the brown puddled directly opposite the blue on the gusset. That's fine, though, because it all resolved itself. 

I can't wait to start on Sock #2. And no, I'm not breaking the yarn to see if I can match the starting point directly. Since it's a swirl rib, and since the color goes down the leg the same way anyway, I'm not worried about matching - the yarn isn't self-patterning; it's self-striping. Not worth the waste of yarn to figure it out. If it works out that it starts in about the same place, I'll take it as a sign of grace from the Knitting Goddesses, and off we go. Here's the last shot.  See how the stripes resolved themselves? 

The Foot
I'm going back now to the toe decrease. I have that oddball Friday class, so I figure I can knit while they're doing their thing. Hopefully, it'll be an early night and we can get home before the next round of storms breaks loose. Right now, it's all tracking south of us, but with the way Mother Nature has been having hissy fits, it could change. Quickly. 

So, what's on your needles? Anything fun for summer? 

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