Wednesday, August 28, 2013

A Week In Knitting

I cast on a new pair of Waiting Room socks before we set off for The Shrubbery.

And in the event, quite a lot of last week felt like sitting in a Waiting Room.
I concentrated on two projects: my "Learn to Knit, Love to Knit" cardigan, and a new pair of socks. The Kex Blanket didn't come out of its bag. The new planned shawl stayed in its skein.
The cardigan pattern goes by the snazzy name "Cropped Cardigan with Cabled Sleeves". While I was away, I completed both fronts. The back is already done, so now I "just" have the sleeves to knit. Luckily, the sleeves are the most interesting part of this pattern: I am really looking forward to working the Hollow Oak panel cables. I knitted the cuffs in the hospital yesterday.
I have mentioned before that this is not a beginner-friendly pattern. The Right Front was particularly challenging, with those fatal words: "work as given for Left Front, reversing all shaping". I had already done battle with "keeping the Briar Rose pattern correct, decrease..." on the Left Front. Ugh.
And there are far too many: "but AT THE SAME TIME..."s. This is an old-fashioned pattern-writing style, for knitters who were brought up on Patons and Sirdar. I have obviously gone soft in my old age and had to re-adjust my mind-set to cope with this think-for-yourself approach. How would a modern, new knitter cope? I'm not sure. This was unexpected in a book called "Learn to Knit..."
So there was some fudgery to the Left and even more to the Right. Let's just hope they match, eh?

And the new socks?
I decided to knit the Reginald Socks from the front cover of A Knitted Sock Society by Rachel Coopey.
I am not sure what possessed me, but I decided to knit the largest size, for The Boy. Does my son care about hand-knitted socks? Probably not. But FL was protesting that he didn't need any more socks, and I had already bought the yarn, which seemed decidedly manly.
My son has very wide feet. Bear feet. So I found myself knitting 79 stitch rows of twisted rib in an improbably long-legged design in brown wool. Oh well planned, Roo!
A whole week of fairly constant knitting produced one and a bit socks. I stopped just short of the toe on sock one because I don't think I have enough yarn to finish it. The second sock is in the reverse colour of this "Same Difference" set from Knitting Goddess. So instead of being "beige with brown", it is "brown with beige".
Any delusions I may have had about these socks looking chocolatey / espresso coffee-like / delicious have now been replaced by thoughts along the lines of mud and dog-droppings. I am definitely suffering from Brown Sock Syndrome.
My plan is to complete sock two to the same point and then work both toes in orange wool.
Yay - orange!


beate grigutsch said...

i really have to take the adventure to learn sock knitting! it is so hard today to by good wool socks without paying lots of money. and then they last very short........
as a kid i hated knitting - any advice from your side?

Roobeedoo said...

Hi Beate! Sock-knitting is not like other knitting - it is smaller, tighter, neater. It is less of an investment in time and materials than knitting a sweater, so really there is nothing to lose - try it! I prefer bamboo dpns (2.5mm) but other people like using circular needles. For your first sock, use self-striping yarn, because it makes you feel really clever without any extra work!

LinB said...

Also, Beate, in a pinch you can scavenge woolen yarn from old sweaters. When money is tight, I seek out woolen sweaters at local thrift stores and ravel them to re-knit into socks, caps, scarves and mittens. Not the best solution to sourcing yarn, but certainly the socks made from used yarn will still keep your feet warm.

Roo, why don't you also throw in a row of orange around the foot, down low where it won't show when worn, as a small rebellion against Brown Sock Syndrome?

Toni Ladd said...

Hi Roo,

I wrote another comment and I think it disappeared. I am writing just to tell you what an inspiration you are to me, a beginning knitter. I bought the book "learn to knit" and have finished 3 projects so far. (the only one from the book is the scarf near the front) Next I am knitting a baby blanket in a more challenging pattern for a friend.

I enjoy your blog so much. I keep you and FL and in my thoughts and prayers.


Toni in Portland, OR

Carolyn said...

I think you must be the fastest knitter, EVER! Your productivity is amazing!

MaryinTN said...

Love the brown socks and putting in some orange will really give them some kick. Can't wait to see what they look like in the end.

Hi Beate! I also look for thrift sweaters but have been known to rummage through the sales bin at any LYS I come across. Children's socks don't usually take as much yarn and you might even be able to get a pair out of 1 skein.

beate grigutsch said...

roo, linB, mary - thank you very much for your help!
if you girls ever need some sewing advice i will give back....
now i look for some yarn and needles in the sales bin to start.

Linda said...

My sharp-dressing (Ted Baker etc) early-20s son's favourite socks are a grey pair in thick wool hand-knitted by a Norwegian friend. His comfort, slouching around the house, go-to pair. Also good with wellies in the winter.

Linda C said...

I love the color of that cardigan! I know one of my sons would love those brown socks. He gets tired of just white and black socks. I have seen him wear two different patterned black socks (one with red hearts for Valentine's Day, one with red and green Christmas symbols. With long pants no one saw until he sat down. He would probably happily wear some of your most colorful creations.