Thursday, July 31, 2008

I've designed.... a sock?!

Yes, my first foray into designing and it's a sock... you can stop laughing now. ;-)

I am no sock knitter, although I love sock yarn and handknit socks. It's just that, well, I get one finished and I'm so excited and proud and then... I realize I have to do it again. Exactly the same.


So I don't usually knit socks. But I ran across Flippant by Sivia Harding while wandering aimlessly through the patterns on Ravelry and it's just the greatest idea ever. So I sat down with it and thought a bit. I knew I loved the idea, but the execution was not my thing. The pattern would bug the top of my foot and I'm pretty sure that a band protecting the bit between my toes was not going to be enough (hey, I'm a delicate flower, alright?). So I started from scratch and last night I ended up with this.

I got the yarn (a partial skein of TOFUtsie) from Grumperina (thanks Kathy!), figured out my gauge and did a tubular cast on for 62 stitches, 1/2 " of 1x1 rib then switched to 2.5" of 3x1 rib. Put 17 stitches or so onto a holder to be worked later for the big toe cuff. Knit in pattern until you get to where you put the stitches on the holder. Using a provisional cast on, cast on 5 stitches, then carry on in pattern once around. Now's the part I need to write up better but, in essence, I built a ramp so that there would be more material on the side of the second toe without making the sock longer overall so it would cover up my little toe. To do this I knit in pattern to 6 stitches past my last cast on stitch, or to the third knit stitch after a purl. Wrap and turn. Knit back in pattern to approximately the same place on the other side of your cast on stitches. Wrap and turn. Go back to one stitch before your wrapped stitch. Wrap and turn. Do this back and forth, working one less stitch each time, until you have three wrapped stitches on each side (more if you want a higher "ramp"). Knit one row in pattern, picking up and knitting the wrapped stitches as you go (there's a better explanation of this in the Lizard Ridge pattern on Knitty). Switch to 1x1 rib for 2-3 rounds. Use the kitchener bind off.

Now for the toe cuff. Pick up your stitches off the holder. Carefully pull out the provisional crochet chain and put those live stitches on a needle. Knit one round in 3x1 rib pattern, picking up stitches as necessary to close the gap between the picked up stitches and the cast on ones, and to maintain the pattern. I was not fussy here when I knit it - it's a sock for heaven's sake, half of it will never be seen. ;-) Carry on until you have enough cuff - I did about 1/2". Switch to 1x1 rib for the same number of rows you used for the "ramp". Kitchener bind off.

Using the provisional cast on for those stitches between the toes means no seam to irritate, so I went with that. The tubular cast on and kitchener bind off are just the nicest looking finishing techniques I've seen, so I used those to make it prettier, but you certainly can use any cast on and bind off you prefer, so long as it's stretchy.

So there! A pattern from me to you! TAH-DA!!!

*insert applause here*

In other knitting I have made good progress on the front panel of The Mister's sweater. He's completely thrilled with the colors... which is a good thing since he picked the colorway out himself. What a guy! This is going to be the Entrelac Sweater (WS 105) from Sarah James. So far the only thing I've changed is to use the entrelac instructions from Alison LoCicero's Entrelac Scarf because they're easier to understand, I like the slipped stitch along the edges, and the 8 stitch square just looks better, imho.

Blocked, this panel will be about 16" wide, which should be just fine. This sweater is knit so modularly that just about anything goes. You knit the front and back center panels of entrelac, join them at the shoulder, then pick up stitches all along the edge and just knit in seedstitch until it's wide enough to fit. Easy peasy! And the entrelac is so easy to pick up and put down, it's an ideal "in between" project, so I can keep on with this and maybe finally cast on for Edgar's jacket in time for fall...

... hey, hope spring eternal. Back off...



Kate said...

Great sock pattern! I'm new to knitting and am always on the lookout for new projects to try out. I wanted to pass along a site I found that has a few basic how to videos with great tips on knitting. I'm not sure if you're interested in how to knit videos, but I found these useful when I was just starting out.

Linda said...

I hadn't seen that site before. I have gone to plenty of times. Their videos are fabulous.