FO: Ladder of Life Toe-Ups

Whew, it takes a lot of yarn to cover guy feets!  I made toe-ups because, although I heard that Trekking comes in generous amounts, I wasn’t sure it was enough.  It was enough, but I could have used more (turns out that hubby doesn’t like a skimpy leg).  So here they are, the Ladder of Life Toe-Up Socks:

I may trade the above out for a better picture sometime, this one’s kinda dark.  This picture gives a nice feel for the texture of the stitch pattern:

And just to overdo it, here’s another:

I used Judy’s Magic Cast-on for the toes, expanded to 70 stitches and used 3 5-stitch repeats of the Ladder of Life pattern on the top of the foot, with 5 stitches of 1×1 ribbing between the ladders and on either side (a total of 35 stitches for the front, 35 of stockinette in back).  I used the instructions for a large-size toe-up heel from Wendy Johnson, following it exactly.  That required doing an extra increase round on the gusset.  This worked out well cuz when I was finished with the heel, I got rid of the extra stitch on each side with a k2tog (or p2tog) when I resumed knitting in the round and that eliminated any hole that may have formed at gusset-tip!  After a round of straight K, I converted the remaining stitches to pattern (4 more 5-stitch ladders, plus associated 1×1 ribbing between) and knit until there was not enough yarn to knit more, ending on the row just before a decorative purl row.  EZ’s sewn bind-off finished the socks and (a bonus) looks like the final row of purl stitches!  The Great Trying-On Session will probably be Sunday … must … control … curiosity …

New stuff for me: making Gigantor-socks (I’ll prolly be reluctant to make more unless he seems really, really happy with these!), metal DPNs, 6″ DPNs.  The metal needles took some getting-used-to but I liked them a lot.  My knitting seemed more even and they were just a pleasure to use.  However, I did have some trouble while I was figuring out how to work with them.  I was knitting one sock on 6″ KnitPicks Harmony wooden needles (also nice, but I like the metal better) and the other on the metal.  The sock on the wooden needles was coming out perceptibly larger (though not enough to make a size difference, IMO, what with negative ease and all).  I was also struggling again with a tiny bit of laddering at one needle-join only (to the right of the front of the sock).  After some time, I finally concluded that I was knitting extra tightly with the metal needles cuz they’re slippery and a) shorter than I’m used to and b) have a manly number of stitches per needle (also not used to that).  I redistributed the stitches over 4 needles and (yay!) felt more comfortable and loosened up a bit.  And I think that helped the laddering too (it was to the right of the needle that had the most stitches).  All in all, I liked the metal needles enough to order more so I can do both socks in metal next time.  The wooden ones have very nice pointy tips and I will still used them, especially for travel.

I loved the generous quantity of Trekking yarn and I really loved the colors (Trekking XXL colorway 71).  You prolly can’t tell, but the color variations match pretty well between socks (but not all totally matchy-matchy, which was nice).  However, I thought the yarn was splitty.  I admit that a good part of that was surely me and my new pointy needles, but I think another good part of it was the yarn.  Also, it may be that the yarn is supposed to look “rustic” but I didn’t like the blobs of stuff like this that I encountered fairly often:


 I don’t have enough experience to know if this is common, but it was kind of annoying to have to stop and pick these off.  I have another ball of Trekking that doesn’t show any sign of this, maybe it’s a random bad-luck ball of yarn.  Thought I’d mention it anyway, FWIW …


4 Responses to “FO: Ladder of Life Toe-Ups”

  1. 1 Diane D. March 13, 2008 at 5:12 pm

    Another nice pair!

    Just finished my first pair of socks – for my hubby – and, you are right! It’s incredible to look at them and think that they will not swim in them. Then, he tries it on, and the leg “could be a bit longer”. (direct quote)

    Already bought the yarn for his next pair – and ‘overbought’, so I wouldn’t run into this problem. Geez! They get expensive!

    Look forward to seeing you at Sharon’s!

  2. 2 Kathy March 14, 2008 at 1:40 pm

    Yes, I will definitely buy “too much” for any future manly socks. If they’re for hubby, they will all be shades of brown and gray and other muted colors so the leftovers will probably combine into a nice pair of striped socks someday! See you soon! (Bring your socks so we can admire them!)

  3. 3 Caroline aka Craftyfox March 16, 2008 at 7:58 pm

    I knit socks for a friends son. He has uk size 15 feet just long and very thin. I used some contrast plain cheaper yarn for the cuff,heels and toes. Love your knitting

  4. 4 Kathy March 16, 2008 at 10:19 pm

    THat’s a thought … a good reason to stock up on a variety of solids and heathers, huh?

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