Remember when I culled and categorised my handknits, and realised how pathetic my collection of socks was? That I, a knitter, was condemned to cold, cold toes when I travelled? How sorrowful was this collection, and how quickly I had to discard everything in it for being darned and patched beyond counting, felted to unwearability or mysteriously lost?
Weep no more!
Gulls and Stones
Knotty or Knice
And the last, unblogged Sidewinders
I see a lack of red/orange colours, so know exactly what to make next year. And I’m happy to report, I’ve been wearing these socks a lot. On flights, during travels, when the air conditioning is too cold… they have all proved themselves worthy!
Still not tired of knitting socks.
I’m planning to release these as a pattern for sale. The chevron pattern itself is dead simple and found across time and space, but the sock has some nice little features, like a reinforced heel bottom as well as reinforcing at the ball of the foot. Also, a more anatomically shaped toe than what I usually find.
Also, testing on these is open! Sign up here if you’re interested!
Pattern: My own, coming soon eventually
Yarn: Madelinetosh Twist Light in “Thyme”
… Yes, I proudly present another pair of socks:
But! This is the first time I’ve participated in the Ravellenic games. After the series of socks I’ve been churning out, this project might not be considered enough of a personal challenge; but I decided that all the travelling and meetings I had to do added a time challenge. And so they did, except that I was stuck in a metal tube for 12 hours; a metal tube, moreover, with an outdated and limited section of videos, and the long stretches of ribbing went very fast.
I also like how the eye of partridge stitch on the heels and balls of the foot look like jute sacking in this colour:
I think I have one more pair in me for this year. And then back to sweaters!
Pattern: Border Socks
Yarn: Too many to list, see project page on Ravelry. I tried to make this a stashbusting project, but I still have some yarn left in each colour.
Needles: 2.5mm dpns for the colourwork, 2.25mm for everything else
Having learnt my lesson with the Show Off Stranded Socks — that Madelinetosh Sock, 2.25 needles and my hands create socks that can tightly encase my legs only at 60 stitches or less, I decided to cast on 64 stitches, but decrease more rapidly down to 56. Even that didn’t work! So I ripped out the couple of inches I’d knit, and started again with 56. Much better.
I worked in garter rib for an inch or so, then started the pattern repeat. As I was knitting, I felt growing frustration at how slow it was. Compared to the other socks it seemed to be crawling along. And then I realised that due to the slipped row, I had only 3 rows growth for every 4 rows worked. No wonder it felt slow!
So I ploughed on, continuing the beautiful gull pattern down the heel flap. I know this is sock heresy — everyone says that the heel flap has to be especially reinforced — but I’ve never had my flaps wear out. I’m far more likely to get holes at the heels and balls of the feet, so that’s where I reinforced the fabric with the eye of partridge stitch.
I do feel my sock knitting mania beginning to subside now. It’s as if my dpns are telling me they’re getting tired, where earlier they were raring to go. I do think I’ll crank out one more pair, in colourwork, no less, before I make a final decision.
I’m really in love with the colour, though! I bought the skein because this colour was going to be discontinued and so I got it at a slight discount.
Pattern: my own, adapted from Paul Atwell socks
Yarn: Madelinetosh Sock, 0.67 skeins, “Ginger”
Needles: 2.25mm dpn
Oh look, another pair!
This time, the Show-Off Stranded Socks in Madelinetosh Sock, the deliciously named “Nectar”.
The pattern stipulates starting with a multiple of 4, and I feel foolish in not reducing the stitch count. The original 64 turned out way too loose in my gauge. However, I like my socks long, so by telling myself I’d wanted calf length socks anyway, I got the cuff to fit snugly at my calf, and then reduced 8 stitches by the time I reached the top of the heel flap.
The heel itself was an interesting construction, not one I’ve encountered before. I like that the stitch pattern continues down the back of the heel where other socks have a reinforced flap — something I’ve never found necessary. However, I’m not enamoured of the shape of the heel itself. So I may steal only the idea of continuing with the leg pattern down the heel flap for regular, gusseted heels from now on.
I love this latest pair, so pretty! I continued the pattern up to the tip of the toe, as usual. The little horizontal bars are particularly beautiful in a variegated yarn.
Pattern: Show-Off Stranded Socks
Yarn: Madelintosh Sock, 0.86 skeins, “Nectar”
Needles: 2.25mm dpn
Yes, again. What can I say? I’m a little bit obsessed, and want to get as many pairs as I can before the obsession fades.
This one is a very quick and easy pattern, and only took me a month since I stopped to make the sleep sack in the middle. Otherwise, I estimate it to be a week’s worth of knitting, even with working weekdays.
The pattern is very intriguing, with broad brushstrokes of ‘cables’ made increases and decreases. I always thought it looked a bit like a mummy splitting its wrappings, but in a fresh green colour it does look quite tree bark like. Also, while knitting it turns out very long and narrow. However, the pattern relies on a lot of negative ease to strech and show off the faux cables, so be sure to choose a springy yarn.
Also, I believe this is the first time I’ve actually used Malabrigo Sock to make actual socks! I love the fabric — very fine and smooth, like commercial socks — let’s see how well it wears. The colour, “Turner”, was insanely difficult to photograph. Every camera turned it into a washed out khaki! The colour is truest in the picture against the patterned cushion.
Yarn: Malabrigo Sock, “Turner”, 0.7 skeins
Needles: 2.25mm dpn
I think I’m on a blue sock knitting jag. After the Rocaille socks of last month, I immediately started on the wildly-popular-nearly-a-decade-ago Hourglass, also in a deep vivid blue — Madelinetosh Sock in “Baltic”. If the Baltic Sea is really that colour, I want to go live in it. On second thoughts, perhaps not.
As usual, I continued the slipped stitch heel pattern all along the sole. And extended the ribbing into the toe for more prettiness.
Nail biting suspense questions: will I succumb to second sock syndrome? Or cast on for the twin immediately? Will I ever be able to accurately capture the deep, shifting, colour? Stay tuned!
A quick post: I started with the Rocaille Socks from The Knitters Book of Socks.
Great book, great pattern. I’m substituting a regular slipped stitch heel instead of the afterthought heel in the pattern, and also continuing with the slipped stitches along the sole and gussets as I have before.
Despite the heavy cabling, the pattern is quite addictive, and if I had a long weekend I could have probably finished the pair. But I don’t have a long weekend. Sigh.