Two weeks, three pairs

After not finishing a pair of socks for me since last August (during the Ravellenic Games) I finished up two pairs of socks for me and a pair for my sister Carla.

I love making socks, but it took a little kick in the pants to finally get back into the swing of things. I find them the perfect project.  They are small projects (meaning they are quick to finish when I actually work on them), but they can be intricately detailed (but they are knit in the round so all knits), and they eventually wear out which means you can keep making more.  I’m finding I’m reaching critical mass of scarves, shawls and stoles, they spend far too much time in a chest by the door and I forget to wear them.

So I’ve already cast on for my next two pairs, because I really need to alway have a pair on the go.

My latest pair of socks, Patina Socks from the Tanis Fiber Arts Year in Colour Club.

My latest pair of socks, Patina Socks from the Tanis Fiber Arts Year in Colour Club.

Advertisements

FO: Tower Hill Birthday Socks

Botany 1

So, I love my mom.  And after last year’s disastrous pair of socks (which didn’t fit right and hurt her feet) I wanted to make it up for her.

So I made her a pair of stripey socks, because everyone needs stripey socks, no matter how old, or young they are.

Botany 2

But, not only that, they were custom made for her.  I’m trying to design the perfect sock pattern for me, so this was a chance to try out the pattern I have been designing in Felici Sport as seen in my Kingpurse and Sunny Being a Kid socks.

Botany 3

So, turns out I was able to solve all the problem, the bottoms are comfy, the legs are long enough and they are a fun, stripey pattern.

Happy Birthday Mom (back on October 12th), I might have been 7 days late out of the womb, and this post might be 2 months late, but I got your socks made in time this year!

– Details –

Project Name: Tower Hill Birthday Socks

Pattern: Mine!

Recipient: MummyAnne – my superawesome Mom

Yarn: KnitPicks Felici in Botany

Modifications:

  • Pattern is still in development, that way they are design features not mods.

New Skills:

  • Stockinette Short-Row Heel

Feedback:

  • Yarn: Felici is nice, but it is probably more of a light fingering than a standard fingering. I find myself preferring Felici Sport to Felici Fingering.
  • Pattern: It’s still not perfect. but I’m getting close to my perfect plain sock pattern.

Re-Knit?: Yes, becuase I will get my perfect plain sock, and Felici is my preferred plain sock yarn so I will be knitting these again, and again, and again.

FO: Kingpurse Sock

Editors Note: Here we go again, I have another batch of FOs to share, these ones start in mid-August and run through mid-October.  I went on a bit of a knitting hiatus in mid-September for some unknown reason, but I am back with a vengeance.

So Kingpurse, has to be the best fitting, most comfortable pair of frankensocks I have made yet. Rather than frankensocks I need to think of them as superband socks, putting together all my favorite sock elements into a single sock. The toe, which uses an shallower toe by spacing the increases differently, the y-shaped garter stitch heel that takes up 60% of the body of the sock, the 3×1 ribbed leg that fits so nicely.

Also, I LOVE the way the stripes worked up on this pair.  Rather than my usual plan of just starting the socks and letting them stripe differently, I tried to make this pair match, however I didn’t notice that the stripes were uneven and the orange ones appeared at a different interval, so when I started knitting all was well and when I got to the first stripe they were the same width by different colors, and I just went with it.  I love the way they are the same but different, kind of like me!

The only thing I don’t like about this sock is the bind-off, I tried a doubled bind off (where you knit one, slip back, then K2tog tbl, and repeat).  It turned out much to sloppy and loose, so I will be going back to Jenny’s Super Stretchy Bind Off.

I think with this I have perfected the sock recipe, I need to put it to further test. I tried it on fingering weight yarn, but I found that with the looser gauge the heel looked funny, so I may just release it as a sport weight pattern, or try to get the gauge on Felici fingering down to what I use for Felici sport.

– Details –

Project Name: Kingpurse Socks

Pattern: My own design

Recipient: Me

Yarn: KnitPicks Felici Sport

Modifications:

  • Did my “doubled” short row heel, that increases the amount of space in the heel without loosening the ankle
  • I didn’t do Jeny’s Super Stretchy Bind Off, and I regretted it, I will be going back to that for the next pair.

New Skills:

  • I’m still refining the design, so I’m still learning about designing.

Feedback:

  • Really getting things going on this yarn and design, but I’m still not done yet.

Re-Knit?: Already have my next pair on the go.

FO: It’s Sunny Being a Kid

Ahh, plain vanilla socks, they are great knitting a comforting friend in times of stress and boredom and with with stripe-y Felici they become something greater than just vanilla socks.

I have been enjoying working with Felici, I have made 2 other pairs of Felici socks (Groovy and Recess) and I wore them all winter.  While I have enjoyed the pattern I was working, I wanted to try different heels, and when I ran across the garter short-row heel of the Up + Down Socks in Simply Sockupied eMag (which as a side note is a great publication for learning basic sock stuff and a great format) I was sold.  However it has a short-row toe and wasn’t designed to be two-at-a-time so I decided to hijack the heel and act like old Frankenstein and make myself a hybrid/mutant sock.

I think this, with a modified slightly more roomy heel that I just figured out yesterday, might be my new go to vanilla sock.

In addition to being awesome, these are my May entry to my Year of Socks. I have a pair of patterned socks on the go, but with my lacy test knit cowl (that I hope will be released soon-ish), a crocheted cowl, some handspun yarn and two woven scarves, I’m only on the leg repeats of the patterned socks right now.  So these will be my May socks and hopefully I will get my patterned pair done for June.

– Details –

Project Name: It’s Sunny Being a Kid

Pattern: Proto-Casserole Socks (a plain sock pattern I have been designing), but are a hybrid of the Up+Down Socks and the Kid Stuff

Recipient: Me

Yarn: KnitPicks Felici Sport in Sunny Day, a 2011 Color

Modifications:

  • Well, these are hybrid socks, so I took the toe and leg from the Kid Stuff and the heel from Up+Down Socks.

New Skills:

  • Short Row Heel: LOVE IT!  I find that the arch/instep fit more tightly than a heel flap sock.
  • Garter Short Rows: LOVE IT TOO!  I’m finding myself more and more in love with Garter Stitch, I may feel differently about Garter Short Rows after I make my own Color Infection Affection Shawl

Feedback:


  • Yarn: Felici Sport is one of my favorite yarns, it makes for interesting plain socks and is so soft and wonderful. No knots or big jumps in this one, so that is a good thing.
  • Pattern:  I want to make the heel cup bigger, and I have my proof of concept so my next pair will have deeper short-row garter heels.

Re-Knit?: Yep, next pair is already on the needles and I have an impressively large stash of Felici.

FO: Groovy Big Kid Socks

I heart my socks

So, the story of my Groovy Big Kid Socks is one that starts with a grey day in early April when I received a magical package, it was the March installment of the Tanis Fiber Arts Year in Fiber Club.  Inside was a magnificent green yarn and an inspired pattern for socks, Marching On by Glenna C. I was inspired and after years of thinking sock knitting was stupid I decided I wanted to make socks.  I had to place an order with KnitPicks for some supplies to finish my Oak Ridges Moraine Bag and the 2011 Felici had been released.  I decided to get some sport because I thought it would be easier to make my first pair of socks with slightly larger yarn and, as such, slightly larger needles.

Socks just hanging out on the bannister outside my room.

So I picked out the ever popular Jaywalker and set forth.  And then the first sock was too big, and the yarn was going to run out before I finished the toe, so I frogged and restarted with this 2-at-a-time pattern.

I am quite pleased with myself and my socks.  They are a bit too large (too much ease), however I am wearing them with pride, despite the fact that it is middle of summer here in Ontario and I wear sandals all the time.

I haven’t decided on the pattern for my next pair of socks, but don’t you worry, there will be a next time.

Look at those great stripes

Project Name: Groovy Big Kid Socks

Pattern: Kid Stuff by Melissa Morgan-Oakes in Toe-up 2-at-a-time Socks

Recipient: Me, me, me

Yarn: KnitPicks Felici Sport in Groovy (Felici are limited edition so this one is from 2011)

Modifications:

  • Increased my needle size to get a larger gauge, which allowed me to make the socks which were designed for a 7″ foot to fit on my 8.5″ foot.
  • Used the small sized leg ribbing and continued till I was out of yarn, about 5″.

New Skills:

  • Making Socks
  • Making 2-at-a-time socks
  • Making Toe Up socks
  • Making a foot gusset
  • Turning a heel

Feedback: LOVE!  The pattern was relatively clear (and all the instruction at the start of the book is very helpful).  While it was a very plain sock, it shows off the striping well.  The yarn was fun to knit, however in order to get matching stripes I had to cut almost 3g off one ball and then halfway through the sock on had an extra long stripe which meant that one sock switched colors more than 2 round soon meaning that the stripes don’t match at the cuffs.  However, for the cost, Felici is unbeatable it is fun, unique, soft, machine washable and dryable.

Re-Knit?: Very likely.  Much like mittens, I can see this technique, toe-up, 2-at-a-time being a go-to for me.  I like using Judy’s Magic Cast On and being able to get a stretchy enough bind off with Jeny’s Surprisingly Stretchy Bind Off.

The Felici has a nice fuzzy halo and is so very soft after going through the washer and dryer.

On Stripes and Socks

So, my socks are growing, and growing, and growing.

On Friday:

Sorry about the bad focus, it is a cameraphone picture

 

and by Sunday:

Slightly better cameraphone picture

 

So far I have made only a couple of minor errors on the bias-knit stitch pattern, but they have been “fixed” and I am the only one who will notice them.

So far so good, the KnitPicks Felici is holding up well, and the color changes are quick so they are almost invisible with the optical illusion that is the bias knit stitch pattern.  Just a few more inches till the heel flap and then to turn the heel.  I feel like turning a heel is one of those things you are supposed to be afraid of as a knitter, but really it is just more knitting.  I figure  if I can survive grafting/kitchener stitch, cabling (with or without a cable needle) and double sided lace (ie. pattern on both sides, not a purled return) I can survive turning the heel.

So back to making a sock, I will be sure to show it off as I get more done.