Sunday, October 05, 2008


Campfire Socks

Yarn: ONline Supersocke 6-fach (75% superwash wool, 25% polyamid; sport weight)
Colorway: 1091 (blue, gray, and brown variegated)
Needles: US 4 dpns
Stitches: 52

If someone who doesn't know I knit were to find out and ask why, these socks would do well as an explanation. They're not perfect, but I'm really proud of them. I like that I have the ability to make something and wear it. I like that I've been able to learn the structure of something and can reproduce and understand it. I enjoy the process and the product. I'm impressed that how to knit socks makes sense to me.

The second sock of the pair is much better made than the first. I cast on a little looser, which makes this sock easier to pull on. I'm being gentler with these than I would with some inexpensive store-bought socks, but I could probably get away with a couple more stitches to make them slide on with worrying about ripping anything. Nevertheless, they fit very well.

The pattern lists a couple recommendations for avoiding a holey gusset. I added these tricks to the other tips I've practiced. I still ended up with a small hole near the ankle on one side, but the other side looks great. The difference was in not having holes where I picked up stitches along the heel flap. I picked up slightly deeper into that selvage edges and knit those stitches through the back loop the first time around. The resulting look is more polished, although I did find that I feel a thicker edge on the inside of the sock. Hopefully you can tell that the knitting on the top sock's gusset is smoother in the picture above.

I've had some issues with a ladder through the middle of the foot where the stitches are divided. It doesn't appear that the hint of a ladder is noticeable. Cool. I figured out that I may have been creating one through counterintuitive knitting technique. I'd been pulling the last stitch on the third needle and first stitch on the first needle very tight. What I was doing was then creating a small but perceptible tension gap between those stitches and the ones surrounding them. When I stopped trying to knit those as tightly as I could, it looked like the ladder disappeared. Looser knitting is also good news for my hands and wrists, especially with these small needles.

I'm really happy with how these socks look. I get why variegated yarn is all the rage for sock knitting. The regular change in color keeps things interesting while you're working with it. (There's also the benefit in being able to figure out if you have the right piece of yarn when picking up stitches.) I'm unconcerned that the socks aren't perfect matches as far as the distribution of the colorway goes. There's probably a way to determine how to do that, but it didn't matter to me.

Frankly, I'm shocked that I've been able to knit these socks as quickly as I have. (I still had some of the leg to do when I resumed knitting yesterday.) Certainly it's a sign that I enjoy making socks and grasp the process. I don't know when I'll start my next pair, but unlike scarves and hats, I have a need for several pairs of socks. Guess I'm on the bandwagon.

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At 8:12 PM, Anonymous Karen said...

Congrats! Your FO socks look great. You should be proud.

At 8:11 AM, Blogger Karen said...

I am grinning from ear to ear. That's all I'm saying.

At 9:03 AM, Anonymous LittleWit said...

Your socks look great! You really finished them quickly. :)

At 10:28 PM, Blogger Jennifer said...

the socks look great!!! good job on the speedy knitting...i think if i could ever get over my stitch picking up fear (and have the time...i haven't even picked up my socks lately because i have no extra time for knitting these days), i would make it a rule to always have a pair of socks on the needles...such a great portable project!


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