I’m Baaaaaack… and Knitting Socks

I hadn’t actually intended to take a month-long hiatus—it just sort of happened. I was bent out of shape by the Supreme Court ruling, and then crashed headlong into the concrete barrier that is the end of the academic year. And after that I did have a bit of a vacation.

While I haven’t been blogging, I have been knitting. I’d mentioned that my friend Chris was insisting that I knit a few socks in preparation for Sock Summit, which we’d been thinking of attending. We ultimately decided that driving a full day each way to meet up with other sock knitters was less appealing than the notion of hanging out with each other knitting socks in our backyards, so we made a pact that each of us would try writing up a sock pattern. We set our project up this way:

• We each agreed to write up our pattern without any test knitting or swatching.
• Once our patterns were written, we’d give them to each other.
• Each of us would knit the first sock from the other’s pattern.
• After that, the pattern writer would be given the first sock and would have to knit up the second herself.

Originally, we’d planned to do our sock swap in August when Sock Summit would be in session, but we both got going early. Chris has already knitted up her sock from my pattern, and I’m most of the way through the second one that I’m knitting myself. I’ve also finished up everything but the toe of the sock that Chris designed.

If you’ve been reading this blog for any length of time, you know I’ve been deeply ambivalent about sock knitting. I’m not much of a sock-wearer, and I’m very fussy about fit, so hand-knit socks always seemed like a lot of effort for a product I might not even like.

Breaking News: I am no longer ambivalent about socks.

I love them. Well, I don’t necessarily plan to start wearing them all the time, but I am absolutely addicted to designing them. They allow all sorts of wonderful opportunities for combining stitch patterns and for playing with those stitches to shape them around the various surfaces of the sock. I’m trying to be inventive with heel flaps, looking for ways to keep the slipped stitches that make them dense, but to arrange these so they echo the stitch patterns in the rest of the sock. I’ve also discovered that socks are great for using every-row lace patterns, which are miserable to work with on shawls or other pieces that are worked back and forth.

In fact, today over lunch with Melissa I found myself saying, “I want to write a book of sock patterns.”

Such a book is probably years away, but I am hoping to find homes for some of my new patterns in on-line magazines (and I am convinced that that book will come into being eventually). I also have one sock pattern I’ll be publishing for free later this summer, once I give it another revision.

Pictures soon—and I promise to try to be better about posting regularly and offering worthwhile tidbits of fun and wisdom, knitterly or otherwise.

June 26 2009 07:46 pm | Uncategorized

One Response to “I’m Baaaaaack… and Knitting Socks”

  1. lella on 28 Jun 2009 at 9:16 am #

    I thought you would love socks that you can knit to fit your own feet. In fact you can, if you want to, fit BOTH feet with perfection, if one is a little smaller than the other.

    Glad you’ve given socks a try and have found a new knitting joy!

    Glad you got some sort of lovely down time after “crashing” into that wall at end of the academic year.

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