21 June 2007

A new socky adventure

I've started something new.

Any guesses?

That's right, it's my very first attempt at a toe-up sock.

Knitty's Diamante socks, to be exact.

Now, you may recall that I purchased this yarn to make Eunny Jang's fabulous, wonderful Bayerische Socks, to which I have only one thing to say:


Okay, maybe that was a bit extreme. I tend never to look at a pattern and think, "oh, I couldn't make that" since I know damn well any knitted piece (no matter how intricate) is made up of little more than knit and purl stitches (both of which I know! Go me!)

However, I am the first to admit defeat after actually attempting a project that just isn't working, for one reason or another. I actually only got to the first row of cables, but there is an "increase row" after the cuff, which (combined with the one row of cables I did, and the size 0 needles, and the 96-stitch rounds) made me realize I would be struggling with it the whole time, that it would not be an enjoyable knit, and that I very well may break one of my brand-new size 0 dpns in half.


We move on.

Next I chose the "Carved Diamond" pattern from Barbara Walker's Second Treasury. It is a "twisted stitch" pattern according to Ms. Walker, but really that means it's full of 2-stitch cable crossings. Which (again) proved too tedious and small for my size 1 needles. I should probably mention that I have only ever knit plain stockinette and 3-1 ribbed socks before, and only on size 2s, so perhaps I really was in over my head.

I think I have finally found a happy medium. The Diamante Socks have an interesting stitch pattern, that is not lace (someday, but I'm still not convinced...), and is not made up of cable crossings. It is also a toe-up pattern, which I have never done before, and decided it would be a good learning experience, as so many knitters swear by toe-up as their sock-knitting-method of choice.

I cast on with the figure 8 cast-on, something I found to be quite fiddly, but it was only 12 stitches on each needle, so it's over pretty fast. I would like to try other toe-up methods, but for now I'm sticking with the figure 8, if only so both socks will match.

As you can see from the picture, I have a few rounds to go before the toe is complete, but I think it will work. I'm not entirely convinced toe-up is really the way to go for me. Certainly it makes the most sense: no worries about running out of yarn!, but I'll need to finish the sock before I pass judgement.

In other news, the second Thermal sleeve is finished, and the body has been cast on (though only about two rounds have been worked). Progress is progress, however slow.

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