Here is the original inspiration for this design:
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Here is the original inspiration for this design:
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Raveled here, they are made with two skeins of Lana Grossa Meilenweit 50 Seta/Cashmere, a merino, silk, acrylic, and cashmere blend, and very soft with it. They are Schurch socks, of course, the Embossed Stitch from More Sensational Knitted Socks knit at eight stitches per inch on 2.25 mm needles (5 dps) on 64 stitches for a circumference of eight inches.
Now for a startling change of pace:Meet the Bordhi Baby Boot, raveled here. This is the first sock suggested in Cat Bordhi's New Pathways for Sock Knitters. Bordhi calls the structure Sky architecture. It is made top down with an pyramid-shaped expansion over the instep and a simple short row heel that I want to try again. It wasn't until I made the second sock that I sort of understood how to make it. But only sort of. I somewhat fault her directions here. It is, however, elegantly simple.
Bordhi presents eight unusual sock structures, or architectures, in her book, and some of them are very beautiful. I want to try them all, but most are toe up, so I have to get with her cast ons and, especially, bind offs. The Baby Boot is made with a fraction of a skein of Louisa Harding Kimono Angora, a dk weight, on # 3 double pointed needles. I have an embarrassing amount of this yarn which is good for nothing but baby wear.
I can hardly contain my excitement over the socks I am currently making. I did manage to adapt the Learn to Knit Afghan zig-zaggy pattern to socks in the round. So far, I love the results, and feel that the finished sock will warrant a pattern posting. But we'll see about that when they're done.
Meanwhile please visit my work blog called Sounds - Music at Niles PL. I don't work on it much , but I couldn't resist rating the Season 8 American Idol performances. I put up a big American Idol display at the library to help generate interest in our CD collection. If you are an AI fan, let me know if my ratings match yours.
Monday, February 9, 2009
By the way, shortly after she was photographed in her Anouk pinafore she threw up on it.
Next are the last few Learn to Knit Afghan squares I made. This first one is quite interesting. It is a slip stitch pattern knit on double pointed needles. It looks quite intricate because, with two sided needles it is possible to change colors every row. Usually, each color is used for two rows because the yarn has to purl back from left to right after finishing a knit row. I think this was a clever invention. It looks more like stranded knitting than the other slip stitch patterns.That was the last slip stitch pattern in the book. I really like the next section so far. It is twisted stitches, where you get easy crossed stitch effects without the cable needle. I love this pattern and would like to adapt it for socks if at all possible. The next one makes a cushy fabric. The lines running down it are twisted stitches standing out in relief because, well, because they are twisted. It would make a great dish cloth except it pulls in before blocking. I could make it a little wider.
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
At this point though I think it is sooo worth it to knit socks because hand knitted wool socks are so much better than store bought ones. They are even good to wear in the summer when you need to wear a sock, like for long walks. You can't say that about all knitted objects, especially sweaters. This past birthday and Christmas season I acquired 3 sweaters from Bloomingdale's and like them much better than any sweater I have ever knit. During the post holiday sale season I acquired 2 more in cashmere from J. Jill, and I can't stop wearing them. (This is a clue that I should never again knit a sweater that is not outerwear in anything thicker than fingering weight, or maybe sport.)
But getting back to socks, there is only so much you can do to make a sock both wearable and interesting. They all require patterns that fit the requirements of leg and instep in the round. Cat Bordhi does have some interesting -looking approaches in her New Pathways for Sock Knitters book, but I haven't tried them yet.
That is why I was interested in this book:
It is almost hard to find solid colored sock yarn - that is how popular handpainted yarns are. And using fancy variegated yarn is one way to make socks more interesting to knit. This book seemed to promise insight into the special qualities of variegated (not necessarily handpainted) yarn and how to make the most of it. But I was disappointed. There is nothing here inaccessible to common sense, like don't pair an intricate lace pattern with an intensely colored, busy variegation. Carol Sulcoski's explanation of how variegations are developed (short color intervals, longer intervals, etc.) is pretty common knowledge, or else readily available elsewhere. Her best idea, to break up the colors by using chevrons, is one that I have seen over and over again. It is illustrated on the cover. Unfortunately, I had to buy this book because it was not available through my library system, and I really wanted to see it.
Sulcoski offers 21 sock patterns from various designers, some quite nice. But here is a problem I have with ready- made sock patterns: they don't come in your exact size, and I don't think it's worth it to play around with needle sizes and math to engineer them. For example, only 11 out of the 21 sock patterns here came in the foot circumference I need for myself, and I'm being flexible. And, I don't have unusual-sized feet at all. I'll just continue to use Charlene Schurch's or Priscilla Gibson Robert's sock formulas that can be used for any size and almost any stitch pattern.
A good case in point is this finished object - socks with a 10 inch foot circumference, a size you won't find in any ready-made pattern with the possible exception of Nancy Bush's vintage socks book.
These babies took 3 skeins of Knit Picks Risata, a wool/cotton blend with a little elastic added to counteract cotton's lack of elasticity. This yarn is not as soft as wool and it's also a little too thick for me. I don't think I'll use it again, especially since all wool is as comfortable in summer as advertised. The pattern is Swedish Block, a six-stitch pattern from Schurch's More Sensational Knitted Socks. The heel is short row, and the toe is Schurch's standard, with decreases running up the sides.
Thanks to Anne for the wonderful baby posts and pictures of Rosie. I'll have another one in the next post.
Sunday, February 1, 2009
That being said - ANOUK!!! I have mixed feelings about Kate Gilbert. I don't share my mother's enthusiasm for the clapotis - I think it's too bulky to be a scarf and too small to be a shawl, so I don't really get the point. Plus, I get grossed out when my mother calls it the "Clap."
However, I adore Gilbert's Anouk baby pattern, and was beyond thrilled when my mother knit one. I know you're all dying to see what it looks like on Rosie, right? I'd say she seems to like it.