Archive for February, 2010

Watch out!

There maybe should be an alert going off in my head or something, because I now have 4 WIPs going!

I have a toe started on a pair of socks.  I was originally going to make a really cool pattern called “Magic Mirrors” (it’s free on Ravelry, check it out!) but I decided the yarn I’ve selected doesn’t suit that pattern.  It’s another tweed and kind of nubbly.  So then I though up an ad-libbed pattern but I’m not so sure the yarn will be suited to that one either.  Sigh.  One toe, no pattern!

There is also the lace scarf, which I’m now calling “Ivy Buds”.  No progress since last picture …

OK, there’s also a scarf that’s forming from leftover Christmas yarn.  Did I mention that one yet?  It’s looking faaaaabulous!  The knitting part is ridiculously easy, but since I’m changing colors a lot, it will require some heavy weaving in.  So, slow going there too.  Here’s a picture in bad light:

Finally, I started a fun project yesterday, with inspiration from a beautiful and creative young woman who knitted in a style all her own.  It will be a blanket for charity … more on that later!!

FO: Cotswold Walkers

Wow, it only took two weeks to complete these socks!  They were essentially a 2×2 ribbed sock with a 3-stitch cable-like design replacing some of the ribs.  I made them from the toe up, using a Magic Cast-on, a heel with gusset on the bottom and the EZ sewn bind-off at the top.  The heel flap was just a continuation of the ribbing pattern.  These socks have 30 iterations of the 4-row pattern.  I would say the leg of the sock is just the right length.  I would shorten the foot by 1 or two patterns if I made these again (my feet are short for my height!). 

I named these socks to evoke an imagined walking tour in the Lake District of England.  Maybe someday they will take the actual tour (hopefully with me in them)!  In the meantime, here they are inside my walking sandals.  Not the best choice when a couple of feet of snow are on the ground, but it’s good for photos.  Note: be extremely wary of the velcro if you want to wear hand-knit socks with shoes like these!

Another note: I ended the sock after row 1 of the pattern (the part where the “crossover” occurs) because I thought it would look prettiest.  It does … BUT … I forgot that this row actually decreases the total stitch count.  When I bound off, I was puzzled to notice that the top of the sock was kind of snug.  “But I used the very flexible EZ sewn bind-off, which never fails!” I muttered.  Then I realized my error:  the sock has 6 fewer stitches after that row.  That’s maybe an inch of circumference lost!  So next time, I will stop after row 4 when all stitches have been restored and settled in.

If you want to use this pretty stitch pattern in place of a rib in your favorite sock pattern, here it is:

use in place of a stockinette rib:

R1: S1 K2 PSSO  (this decreases from 3 stitches to 2)

R2: K1 YO K1 (this puts the missing stitch back, creating the hole in the middle)

R3: K3

R4: K3

(PSSO means to pass the slipped stitch over the two stitches just knitted.)

This is JUST the stitch pattern.  It could replace the K3 in a 3X3 ribbing (K3 P3), or use it wherever you want. Just put some purl or garter stitch on either side to show it off.  If you use it to replace a 2-stitch rib, don’t forget that this will increase the stitch count of your sock circumference unless you compensate elsewhere. The above instructions are for knitting in the round (all sides are the right side!).  I had to knit flat for the heel flap.  The instructions for that are:

R1 (RS): S1 K2 PSSO  (this decreases from 3 stitches to 2)

R2: P1 YO P1 (this puts the missing stitch back, creating the hole in the middle)

R3: K3

R4: P3

Socked In

They’re saying it will be a blizzard, but it’s just getting started … I’m planning to stay in all day tomorrow and should have some time to turn a couple of heels, yeah!

“What heels?”, you may ask … I’ve been so busy, I haven’t had time to post.  But I HAVE used whatever free time I could find to knit a little!  I grabbed some yarn from the stash and the needles from the last pair of socks (still in their project bags, not put away … hey, I’ve been busy!) and fired up a pair of toe-up socks just to have something going.  The tweedy yarn was calling for something in the cable realm but I wanted another easy pair, so I decided to use a nifty stitch pattern from one of the scarves on the 2008 Christmas list … the “yarn-over cable” from Barbara Walker’s indispensable “Treasury of Knitting Patterns”.  It’s not really a cable, it uses a slip stitch decrease followed (on the next row) by a yarn-over to restore the stitch count. But it looks like a cable with a little hole in the middle — cool!  It’s easy and effective and, from what I can see so far, makes a nice ribbing.  Here’s a pic I took almost a week ago:

As noted, I’m about to turn the heels.  That could take some experimenting cuz I’m planning to put the cable rib on the heel instead of a heel stitch but haven’t really thought it all out yet, ha ha!

Oh, I also started some lace.  For 2007 Christmas knitting, I made lots of lace scarves and gave them all away, forgot to make one for myself!  I’ve had the yarn but never got around to getting started on it.  Until a couple of weeks ago, that is:

This does not look impressive, but patience is necessary.  Blocking will reveal something pretty in the end!