So Much Sock Yarn!

I spent a delightful Saturday afternoon last week playing in my craft closet, pulling out  yarn, sorting, and rediscovering what was in my stash.   I can’t stand to throw away anything that is marginally useful, but I was still amazed at how much sock yarn I pulled out!  I decided to organize it all in a box, on the theory that I might be better able to figure out what to do with it, someday.

Before and after – and if you look carefully, you can see that I found more yarn after I took the first picture.

Yes, that’s the little Mr. Lawrence checking out the yarn.

Gardener Sock – Half Done!

The Gardener Sock is half complete – that is, one sock done.  The other sock is started, but this picture should let you see how it’s coming along.  Sadly, the nifty spider up the back of the leg is hard to see.  Note to self – have the talented photographer-daughter start taking project photos.

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I had a lot of trouble with the picot edging.  Turns out, I was attempting to knit it upside down and backwards (don’t ask- when I figured out what I was doing wrong, I couldn’t figure out HOW I was doing it so very wrong!).  I knit the sample (above) and it’s actually pretty easy, if done the right way.

Square 1 x 2

Not one, but TWO projects completely unwound. Check out previous posts for the Garden Sock, and the Merino Lace Scarf. The Garden sock, I discovered, was too short for adult feet. Note to self – check the measurements and verify the gauge. I did, but not correctly, and when I finished the heel, I realized it was much too short.

After unwinding the sock, I decided to console myself with a little work on the scarf. I realized that I could no longer tolerate the boarder, which I knew I was wrongly knitting. So, it was unwound, too.

The crappy day I had, yesterday, probably contributed to that last one. But I really did need to start over on The Gardener. Happy Thursday.

Learning new techniques in socks

So, my best friend and I played hookey a few weeks ago and visited Nashville, IN for the day.  There’s a great yarn store, The Clay Purl

(My friend graciously indulges my love of visiting yarn stores – when we travel or spend time together, she cheerfully agrees to visit yarn stores, and she has benefited by these adventures – see B’s sweater in an earlier post)

Found WONDERFUL yarn at the Clay Purl, including some brand-new, custom-dyed sock-weight yarn.  Also in our exploring, we found a terrific pattern, “The Gardener” by Leslie Comstock (Pattern at Ravelry)

So, my friend will be getting these socks out of the lovely yarn we found.

However…

After taking a look at the pattern, I realized I was a bit over my head, so I started practicing.  Several of the techniques in The Gardener can be found in Cat Bordhi’s book, “New Pathways for Sock Knitters, Book One,” a copy of which I received one year for Christmas, but hadn’t really explored.

Find your copy at Amazon:  New Pathways for Sock Knitters

It’s a great book – the author explains new techniques very well, and has improved upon several standard techniques in sock design and construction.

I knit a pair of socks from the book that incorporated several of the techniques in The Gardner.  The pair I chose is “Cables and Corrugations,” which included the following techniques (new for me) — toe-up socks, riverbed sole, modified heel, moccasin toe and the use of size 1 needles (the smallest I have used on yarn knitting)

Am I GLAD I did this!  Turns out a little more challenging than I expected, and really required some mental and manual dexterity (finished socks, below).

Now, on to the Gardner socks.  Again, with the challenging pattern, I decided to use scrap yarn to start the sock to see how I got along with the pattern – a vine on the front with a big spider up the back of the sock.  Also toe-up, riverbed construction.  Here’s what I have so far, and I’ve discovered that the vine pattern isn’t as hard as I feared, so I’m about ready to jump to the fashion yarn.  I’ll post the yarn information and in-process pictures later, so my Dear Reader can follow along.