Hedgehog Knits

Adventures in knitting from the eastern edge of Canada.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Socky Goodness

Whatever did I do before I discovered the joys of sock knitting? Actually, it was sock knitting that got me back into knitting this time around. I learned to knit at a young age and had dabbled with it all my life, but it was a Swiss friend from my M.Sc. days at Queen's (around six years ago) who inspired me to learn to knit socks. I admired her beautiful stripey socks one day and was floored to hear that she had made them herself. Back in Newfoundland, the only hand-knit socks I knew were thick, worsted weight boot socks, mostly worn by men, or in skates or boots in the dead of winter. These finely knit, beautifully coloured, lightweight socks were totally new to me. And self-patterning yarn was the height of novelty to be. To hell with all the crazy fun-fur that people were knitting with at the time. I headed of to S&R department store and got me some Kroy, and a booklet by Patons called "Pull up Your Socks" which had pretty good instructions from which I managed t teach myself to knit in the round. And haven't stopped since.

Here are the latest finished socks:

"Fair Isle Options" from the Patons booklet Classics in Kroy in assorted ends of sock yarn. The Blue is Sheepjes Invicta, the white is Kroy, the rest... who knows. Pattern adapted to knit on two circulars, size 2.5 mm.

The most recently started sock is this, alas still partnerless sock:

It's a basic broad rib (K5P1) sock with no real pattern. As Glenna has mentioned, once you read the Yarn Harlot's explanation in Knitting Rules, socks make so much more sense. Unless it's cabled or lacey or something, I can pretty much make it up as I go along. You may recognize the yarn from my failed attempt at Jaywalkers. I was tired of ripping them back and making them bigger after three attempts, and I decided that I really liked this yarn too much to be so frustrated at it. It is truly nice yarn to work with, something called Super Soxx Color that was new at my LYS a couple of months ago. Ha! I just realized looking at the label that it's made by Lang and Co., Switzerland. I'm assuming that this is the same Lang company that makes Jawoll (?). If that's the case, this is a much better sock yarn folks. I love the colours and the controlled randomness of the stripes. In a perfect world, it would have a little more white, but I'm fully aware that people as fussy as me should learn to dye their own self-striping yarn!

Anyway, I set this one aside for a while to ponder whether to make the second sock a clone, or to start at a different point in the colour repeat and make totally un-matching socks. So far I'm leaning toward the latter. Any suggestions?

While I'm not officially joining the Knit from Stash challenge, as I mentioned before, I'm really trying to cut down my stash a bit lately, in consideration of my lack of storage space, my limited budget, and my general guilt at having so much lovely stuff piled up with no immediate plans for it. I'm very much a "use it or chuck it out" kind of person now, much recovered from my younger days as a packrat. So while pondering the dilemma of where to start the second stripey sock, I started an entirely different stripey sock out of some bargain stuff that I had in my stash:

Not to be confused with the previous "Super Soxx", this stuff is called "Super Socks Dazzle". No company mentioned on the label, just "Made in Italy". I think this was in the neighbourhood of $3.50 per ball. Now these stripes are not holding my attention at all. This is looking very boring, and will surely languish unfinished in my basket for a long, long time if I continue with this. I require entertainment from my socks - at least a fun, unpredictable stripe pattern to break up the stockinette monotony. So I went looking for a more interesting pattern to try with it, and I think I may have a winner. Broadripple socks from the Summer 2003 Knitty looks subtiantially more interesting - take plain, regular stripes and add a bit of ripple to keep the eye moving. I don't want to knit socks on the large (3.25 mm) needles listed in the pattern, but I think I can increase it by a full pattern repeat to 70 sts and get away with a much finer gague. I'll keep you posted.

Happy knitting!



Blogger Marianne said...

All these socks are great, I even like the last ones that you don't care for, but those Fair Isle...beautiful! I'm sitting here in your dust... :)
The socks I'm making for Bobby, I'm just making it up as I go along and kept it very simple. Thanks for stopping by.

1:09 p.m.  
Blogger knitting_lady said...

Ohh, just look at those fair isle socks! Excuse me while I fondle your feet for a moment...

I've often wondered about trying the 2-circs method but seem to be managing the 2-stranded colour work on DPNs so far, I'll letcha know if that changes.

And when will you come to Toronto, dahlink? We can knit up a storm together and go to all the fun stores.

2:27 p.m.  
Blogger Sarah said...

Ooh you can't beat a good pair of socks :)

I love your lone stripey and I think non-matching is most fun.

1:25 p.m.  

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