BB knits

A dumping grounds for all things knitting wandering through my lil' mind.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Gift Socks

Back in the summer when I was learning to knit socks, my friend Christy said "I'm a size 9!" as a joke. However, I annoyed her at work a lot over the summer, and she's been a super supportive friend.. so I made a note of her shoe size and fully intended to knit her up some socks once I knew I could do it. After 3 successful pairs, I decided it was time for Christy's Socks!

Pattern: None, really. Just used past experience and "Knitting Rules!" for reference
Yarn: Regia
Other: 2.5mm DPNs, set of 4
Cast on: sock 1: Oct 13/06; sock 2: Oct 23/06
Cast off: sock 1: Oct 20/06; sock 2: Oct 27/06

New techniques learned: None, really. Just further fine tuned my sock abilities, and continued to develope my love for knitting socks and my confidence in being able to just do them, no pattern necessary.

Changes to pattern: Well, there wasn't really a pattern. I did the petticoat top again, and then mostly just used some guidelines from the Yarn Harlot's "Knitting Rules!", keeping in mind things I'd done with past socks.

What I would do differently if I made it again: If I had made them for myself, I might have made them taller in the leg, just because I like taller socks in my boots. Christy doesn't wear boots much (or at all), though, so it probably doesn't matter :P Oh, and it might have been nice if they could have been a finished product surprise... but someone blew my cover while I was half way through one sock! She got really excited and hugged me when she found out... but I think it would've been more fun to have had the surprise with the finished product ;)

finished christy sock
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

The finished sock! I think knitted socks look kind of funny off the foot...

gift wrapped socks
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

All bundled up and ready to go to their new home!

Christy models her new socks
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

Being modeled by the proud recipient! (seriously, she showed those socks off to everyone and anyone that day! She's the kind of person one loves to knit for, because she's so ridiculously happy to have recieved some handmade socks and she brags about them and makes sure eveyrone knows who made them for her :) )

Third Time is Charming!

This is the yarn that inspired me to finally get off my lazy arse and try knitting socks... but of course, I couldn't start with this yarn - in case something went horribly wrong :P But I figured by pair #3, I was ready to use my yummy purple yarn!

Pattern: started with "Petticoat socks" from Weekend Knitting...
Yarn: Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock in Amethyst Stripe
Other: 2.5mm DPNs, set of 4
Cast on: sock 1: Sept 17/06; sock 2: Sept 25/06
Cast off: sock 1: Sept 25/06; sock 2: Sept 28/06

New techniques learned: Provisional cast on, to make pretty "petticoat" edge on sock. Which is pretty much now my most favourite way to start my socks. Took care of my "too tight cast on edge" issue from previous socks. It was a lot simpler than I had thought at first glance, it's actually kind of fun, and I enjoy the way it looks.

Changes to pattern: well, I pretty much threw it out the window :P See, I thought maybe I should try knitting "not plain" socks... and these socks look nice and not too hard.. but. no. It hurt my head. I was making a lot of mistakes and not enjoying how it was turning out after day 1. I loved the yarn too much to keep on with something that was frustrating me and making me unsure... so on Sept 20th, I ripped back to the petticoat edge and just knit plain. I used the pattern for guidance on the heel and toe, as well as looking back at the last 2 pairs of socks I made, and "Knitting Rules" by the Yarn Harlot.

What I would do differently if I made it again: Not have bothered trying that pattern? ;P Generally, I love the socks. They're pretty :) And very comfortable. I've washed them a few times now, and the heels are getting a bit fuzzy.. but they're still my favourites!

Lorna's Lace Socks
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

My pretty stripey purple socks! otherwise known as, my most favourite socks in the history of socks...

Lorna's Lace Socks
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

I love how hand knitted socks fit. It's so comfy. And they are so nice and warm! I walked to an engagement party quite aways away from my house, on quite a chilly night, and my toes stayed so nice and cozy! (unlike my nose..) And then it seemed so nice to have these delightful purple toes poking out under the hem of my dressy black pants :)

My second sock(lets)!

Continueing on the sock theme... my second pair of socks were more season-appropriate :)

Pattern: Alison's Ankle Socks
Yarn: Lang Yarns Jawoll Cotton Jacquard superwash
Other: 3.25mm DPNs, set of 4
Cast on: sock 1: July 29/06; sock 2: July 29/06
Cast off: sock 1: July 29/06; sock 2: Aug 6/06

What's with the excessive amount of time on the 2nd sock? Got 3 rows of ribbing done before calling it a night on the 29th... and then there was a crazy heat wave and I couldn't even think about touching any knitting until the 6th :P

New techniques learned: Not sure that there was anything really that different for these socks versus my first socks..except the lack of much leg... It was more a matter of improving on my sock skills :) The holes around the heel were less big this time ;)

Changes to pattern: Nothing on purpose... was still too new to sock knitting to trust myself to stray from the pattern!

What I would do differently if I made it again: I will admit at this point in my knitting career, I only knew one way to cast on, really. I had tried another and didn't like it, so stuck to my trusty knitted cast on. Problem? I cast on kind of tight. I've been working on that, and generally I'm getting better... but these socks are a bit tricky to get on over my heel :P So if I were to make them again, I'd try to loosen that up a bit. Also, I still am pretty crap at judging how much yarn socks will or will not eat up... I had a good amount left over, and if I were to make them again I'd have a bit more hieght on them. They're perfect in slip ons like crocs, but I would prefer a bit more height when I'm wearing my running shoes.

Generally, these socks are awesome. I wore them a lot in the summer at work (where I'm on my feet a lot), and they've held up well with many washings. And the colours are all kinds of fun :)

Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

view from the top. very comfy, and came in handy on those chillier days in the summer. they matched my hot pink croc-knock-offs nicely at work ;)

Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

another view - showing off the fun heels! (and my not so fun heels..ouch... long story short, I got lost in Toronto and had to walk far to much on a far too hot day. the shoes I was wearing were sensible and comfortable, but they had their limits...)

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

My Very First Socks!

Hello! Long time no post. I have no good excuse (well, I have lots of excuses, but I won't bother you with them) Point is, I'm back.. and I have socks!

This summer I finally sat down and tried knitting socks. And I love it. Yay!
I started with the pattern, yarn, and needles my secret pal sent me in SP7 in like February.

Pattern: "His n' Her Slouch Socks" from Paton's "Pull up your socks" pattern booklet, made size medium
Yarn: KnitPicks Wool of the Andes in Violet (100% Peruvian Wool)
Other: 5mm DPNs, set of 4
Cast on: sock 1: June 30/06; sock 2: July 9/06
Cast off: sock 1: July 2/06; sock 2: July 9/06

New techniques learned: Well, knitting socks! :) I've knit in the round before, and I've made mittens - so the toe part wasn't too new. But the heel was pretty much a completely new experience for me!

Changes to pattern: Nothing on purpose... but it's likely I misunderstood something somewhere and maybe didn't do it exactly right. but I did both socks the same, and they fit and look fine, so no big deal ;)

What I would do differently if I made it again: Maybe make the leg bit a touch longer... I had a good amount of yarn left over, and do enjoy tall socks. But really, I'm quite pleased with these socks!

Of course, July isn't a good time to wear thick wool socks ;) But it's been quite chilly this past month, so they have been worn a couple of times.. on the coldest days.. and they are SO warm and cozy!! They've been washed once now (thrown in the washing machine, cold water, hung to dry) and are very very VERY fuzzy.. and the heel is kind of felted (happened with wearing all day in my boots, before I ever washed them), but they're just that much cozier for it all :)

first sock progress
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

This is how far I got the first night. Very encouraging!

first heel turned!
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

Taken shortly after turning my first heel! Yay! That's my favourite part of the sock. And the toe. I like the toe part as well.

unfinished sock
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

My very first sock, fresh off the needles! The hole has grown on me ;) So squishy and and purple! :)

Very First Sock
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

And here is that very first sock, all nicely finished, ends woven in. Love it!

First Socks!
Originally uploaded by dottiemaggie.

the completed pair! Yay! They fit very nicely, and are all kinds of warm and comfy!