The Creative Process

Happy Imbolc everyone! Which also means that a new Anti-craft issue is up.

May Brigid smile upon all my fellow fibrefolks this year.

Okay, as promised – a sock update.

The Neon Madness Socks are done:

Neon Madness Socks - complete Neon Madness Socks - side view

and I think they look pretty terrific (even if my photos aren’t – still getting used to the new camera).

I started and completed my 3rd pair of 2008:

Cafe Latte Socks - 75% Cafe Latte Socks - complete

These are my Cafe Latte socks and are half the reason for the blog not being updated for a while. They are out of Diamond Galway Paint (Aran Wt) and a creamy beige Worsted Lambswool that I frogged from a 2nd hand Old Navy Sweater a while ago.

Now I will explain the agony that these originally “simple” 42 st toe-up socks put me through – or rather the lengthy adventure that my creative nature took me on with this pattern. What happened was this:

I have a set of 47″ 3mm Addi Turbos which I decided I would use “magic loop”ed to do these socks 2-at-a-time. I usually do my worsted weight socks on 3.25mm but have gone down to 2.75mm with them in the past – no big whoop. I made short row toes using 2.75mm (for durability) in the lambswool and changed to the 3mm for the feet – so far no problems, a little tight, but no big deal. Here’s where I started to mess with things. After perusing my stitch dictionaries for a while, I decided to start a cable an inch before the heel, forgetting that cables make things TIGHTER than normal and thinking that one added stitch would do the trick. I did both (short row) heels and got 2” into the leg before realizing that it just wouldn’t work – way too tight. Therefore, I ripped back both heels and back to where the cable began – grumble.

I dug out my copy of Cat Bordhi’s New Pathways for Sock Knitters and had a think. I really needed a gusset of a sort so that these would actually fit my feet. Immediately lighting on the Foxglove pattern, I went “aha!” and ripped back to 4″ of foot (or where the “toe” ends) and the increases for the foot began. I did both feet at the same time and switched back to the lambswool and 2.75mm needles for the flap heel. Awesome – back on track and back to the 3mm needles for the leg.

By this time the blasted circular cord is driving me nuts. After about an inch into the leg, I decide to switch to DPNs and add a gradual eyelet pattern for a bit of stretch. Continuing on just the one sock at a time now, I complete most of the leg of the first sock before my inner Ollivander started saying “No, no. Definitely not”. After an enormous amount of cursing, I ripped back again to the heel and conceded to the fact that I not only need some eyelets, but a bit of ribbing as well to get these puppies over my calf muscle. After playing a bit more with my stitch dictionaries I put together a 7 st 4-row eyelet rib pattern that I hoped would work. It did – WAHOO!

The leg of the first sock got finished in 3 hrs and I ended it with 12 rnds of lambswool in pattern (sans eyelets). I finished off the last 8 rnds of ribbing on the second sock Wednesday morning.

Cafe Latte Socks - side view Success. Happiness. Joy. Tears.

But a pair of worsted weight socks that normally would have taken only 3 days for me to do ended up frustrating me for almost 2 weeks.

To soothe my soul, I began a new pair that I KNEW would work:

Tea on the Sea Socks

These are what I’m calling “Tea on the Sea” socks. I’m using the Harlot‘s “Earl Grey” sock pattern and Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock yarn in “Baltic Sea”. The only changes made in the pattern are that I’m using 2mm needles (DPNs – I’m off circs for socks for a while) which are what I always use for 72/80 st socks and increased the cuff size from 12 rnds to 18. Brilliant – and super fast! What you see in the picture only took me a couple of hours. The pattern is great – I love a classic side cabled sock, especially if it’s only 1×1 twists. Ahhhh, bliss!

Here’s where I’m at with them now:

Tea on the Sea Socks - Leg done

I’m totally loving these socks.

As I believe the “old sweater” info deserves its’ own entry, I’ll leave it till next time.

But – here’s a quick update on some other current projects:

VVS Afghan - 30 rows

I’m up to 30 rows now on the Vintage Vertical Stripe Lopi Afghan. BadgerDan and I measured this yesterday – it currently stands at 18″ wide by 117″ long (FYI – that’s about 9.75 ft long). By my calculations, I only have another 130 rows to go. Oi -this may take a while.

I’ve also gotten a little further along with the Luna Moth Shawl which I plan on motoring on now that my little sock issue is resolved. I switched from 3.5mm to 3.75mm straights but will be going back onto circs in a repeat or two.

Luna Moth Shawl - Photo 2

We survived the weather no problem, I just wish it didn’t always seem to happen on a Wednesday (our Stitch n’ Bitch night)!

Here’s the current view from my bedroom window:

Main Street, Newmarket

(and yes, I do live across the street from the yarn shop – did I mention that I do the apartment hunting in the family? [grin])

I can’t begin to express how great it is to have a camera again.


Published in: on February 8, 2008 at 10:08 am  Leave a Comment  
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