Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Jamie's Stash Box

This sorry attempt at a sock is from yarn hidden in my stash box. Well, not my "real" stash box, but my newer stash box. Neither is by any means as extensive as my fellow RTYer's, but they're getting there. I'm confident with a little more diligence I can do the team justice. Most of the yarns I have stashed in my "real" stash box are for overly ambitious crochet projects that have yet to see the light of day because I'm trapped in knitting heaven. Not a bad place to be, right?

I did put a good dent in my "new" stash box (the one filling up fast with yarns I simply must knit something with) over the holidays with three sweaters, a shawl, a couple of scarves and some dishcloths. Immediately after Christmas, I accomplished my first ever cable knit sweater for my eldest grandson (he turned 7 last week), then just for the heck of it and because it's so freaking cold in North Dakota where my mom still lives, I made a snood (combination scarf/hood) for her out of Lion Brand Chenille in a stunning shade of deep teal. I wish I'd thought to take a picture for y'all, but you'll have to take my word for it, it was a gorgeous creation!

After whipping off another fair isle sweater for granddaughter #3's birthday (she'll be 6 next week), I dug into the "new" stash box and pulled out a couple of skeins of Paton's SWS in Natural Blue (#70128). When I purchased the yarn, I'd asked the sales clerk for assistance and told her I wanted a self striping yarn. I'd wanted a yarn similar to what I'd seen one of Sock Hoppers use during our October Sock Hop, and she directed me to the Paton's SWS. It didn't do what I thought it would do, but it was self-striping, I suppose in a more subtle way. Since the next couple of months here at RTY have been designated "knitting for me" I had the brilliant idea that I'd use this super-soft yarn for a cool pair of socks for myself.

Pfffttt!! I'm not sure I'm cut for socks. I had no trouble turning the heel or making the heel flap. Those were quite simple, but something went haywire on me when it came to shaping the toe. I think I know what went wrong, and I'm hoping someone with much more experience than me can determine from the photo above what the heck I did wrong.

After the heel was completed, I readjusted the stitches on the needles to make them more evenly distributed, mostly because I have an unrealistic fear of dropping stitches. I don't think I was supposed to do that and I'm hoping someone can confirm my suspicions.

Instead of soldiering on and completing the second sock, I abandoned that ship in an hurry and and decided to knit one of those London Beanie's our Cindi had mentioned in her blog post here not too long ago. As you can see, I managed to conquer beanie-dom fairly successfully (isn't that yarn goregous!), however I face yet another issue. The thing is too small for an adult head. My DH tried it on, and he doesn't have an overly large head, but it was just a bit too small. And yes, I even checked the gauge before starting. I'll be sending it to grandson #5.

I'll be trying the beanie thing again, too. Two of my sons have birthdays coming up in February and March. I'm going to use US8's this time rather then the US7's the pattern calls for and see if that helps. The DH wants one, too, but he wants one of those hats with the really long tail that you can wrap around your neck for a scarf. What can I say, the man has never been a fashionista :::sigh:::.

So, here are my questions:

1. What did I do wrong with the sock? My toe sucks!

2. Does anyone know where I can find a pattern for the hat/scarf combo thingy for the DH?

6 Comments:

Blogger Fran Baker said...

Jamie:

I'm no sock expert - six pairs total to my name, and four of those were slipper socks. But I'd venture to say it had something to do with your redistribution of stitches after the heel. On the patterns I've used, you're supposed to decrease those extra stitches as you start knitting the foot.

My solution for the toe is the three-needle bind-off. I can't do the Kitchener. Can't, can't, can't.

Sounds like you've been a busy lady, writing and also knitting for all those grandbabies.

8:50 AM  
Blogger Jamie Denton said...

Fran - I did the three needle bind off on the beanie because that Kitchener stitch on the toe nearly had me in tears. No way could I face it again so soon.

Maybe I should try slipper socks next time?

8:54 AM  
Blogger Julie said...

It appears to me that you have decreases on the top of the foot as well as the sides. There should not be any on top of the foot. If you were working on dpns, you should have had your instep sts (top of the foot) on 2 needles, and your sole sts on either one or 2 needles. Your decreases are then done at the sides of the foot only, not on every needle. I hope this makes sense....

10:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you were trying for the traditional flat toe...well, you introduced some new design elements. (Generally, no decreases on top of foot in flat toe) However, if kitchener has you freaked, you may want to try a different toe. The Nancy Bush books cover different toes and heels in a very nonthreatening way.

If you just want to finish it and enjoy making a sock... you could treat it like the top of a hat. This is actually one of my favorite toes because I have a short big toe. Assume you have 40 stitches. Divide by 4 = 10. (Mark the beginning of the round) knit 8, K2tog, *. Knit a row, then change the 8 to 7 to 6, etc. when about 20 stitches remain, you might decrease more frequently (it's your foot). At 8 stitches, thread a needle through them and call it good. It may look funky on the bed, but fits my foot well.
If you want a shorter, wider toe, divide the 40 stitches by 8, for a medium decrease, 6.

Liz in NoWhere PA (but I did grow up in ND)

11:49 AM  
Blogger Jamie Denton said...

Julie - Yes, it really does make sense. And I think it happened because of me rearranging the stitches after finishing the heel.

Thanks!

3:02 AM  
Blogger Jamie Denton said...

Liz - Thanks!

Hey, I'm in PA, and lived in ND for 10 years. Where 'bouts in ND? We were in a teeny little town north of Minot.

3:04 AM  

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