Sunday, February 12, 2017

Year of Projects 6: Week 33

After finishing the first Swirling Ribbons sock I sent photos and comments to the designer then decided against knitting a second. I'll frog and re-use this yarn for another pattern. I'm not happy with the fit and I just can't live with the holes. Que sera, sera.

Instead I cast on a new pair of socks with the other skein of yarn that I was considering for the Swirling Ribbons sneak peak pattern. It's Painted Fleece 75/25 Fingering in a colourway called "Old Blue Eyes". Because of the high contrast and busy-ness of the colour way I decided to play it safe with a vanilla sock pattern: Vanilla is the New Black. It's a very basic vanilla sock but knit with a "Strong Heel" which works well with stripey colourways. 

The Strong Heel was introduced in 2003 by knit designer Gerdine Crawford-Strong. Gusset increases are worked on either side of the centre back of the heel, and then when the heel is turned you land back at your primary stitch count without the need to pick up any stitches. It's my favourite of all the non-traditional heel constructions.

I wish I had read the comments on the project pages before knitting these socks though! I really ought to have twisted the stitches at the increases to close up those holes. Oh well, a couple of washes and wears will probably take care of them!

Other than that, I'm really happy with these socks. I think that this pattern will become my Go-To vanilla sock pattern for stripey colourways! I really like the way it keeps the stripes organized. In fact I think I'll redo Gavin's grey ribbed socks - the ones I frogged a couple of weeks ago because they're too small - this way too! 

But first I had to cast on socks for the February KAL in the Solid Socks group on Ravelry. After all, February is a short month and we're almost halfway through it already. The theme this month is black, grey or white. Looking through the destashed yarns I found this mystery white yarn to use. It's so nice to knit light coloured yarn!

I chose "Fascine Braid Socks" for my pattern. It has a nice feminine look without lace or holes. The picot cuff is cute, but what a pain! Almost enough to bring on a case of second sock syndrome! Never mind though, the main leg pattern is super simple and quick to knit!

I did some extensive modifications to the pattern. As written the primary stitch count was 60 sts on 2.75mm needles. This yarn is too thin for that. Instead I've cast on 72 sts and widened the knit columns to 4 stitches wide. Should do the trick!

It's snowing like crazy here - 1 cm an hour from last night for the next day or two. No point in trying to shovel yet; I may as well wait until it stops. In the meantime it's very pretty to look at and perfect weather to curl up in a comfy chair and knit!


Becki said...

Drive carefully in the snow and I hope winter doesn't last too much longer for you. Meanwhile... how wonderful to be able to keep your tootsies toasty warm in beautiful socks you've knit!

Breathing Life said...

I hear you about the picot edging. Very time consuming but pretty. I am going to check out that strong heel pattern. It sounds interesting and I hate picking up stitches for the gusset. Thanks for the link.

Stefanie Ng said...

You are such a sock magician. I love reading about your modifications.

Sam I Am...... said...

I like Stefanie's are a "sock magician"! Lucky you with the snow...well, I think you're lucky anyway. This has be a very mild Winter, no snow. barely any freezes and now the daffodils are blooming and leaves are popping out! I love the blue stripes and your white one reminds me of the snow! Have a great week! Be careful shoveling and driving!

Caffeine Girl said...

Snow! I am so jealous. I love the stuff, and we get so little these days.
That is a really interesting heel. I'd like to try it some time.

Wanderingcatstudio said...

That's a neat heel... i'll have to give that one a try

Love the braid sock!

Anonymous said...

I love the look of that strong heel.

And your new sock pattern is VERY pretty!

Cyra said...

A great pair of socks with a fabulous self-stripe. Love the blue too. The braid socks are gorgeous, and that picot edging is so delicate. Good luck with the snow shoveling when it finally decides to stop. I don't envy you that job.

Lucy Bowen said...

I'm jealous of the snow too, but only as we don't get much. I love that blue and the heel is very interesting. The new socks are gorgeous, the edging may be tedious but it is so effective.

kathy b said...

I like your snow shoveling thoughts. I usually wait until lit is done too. Your braided socks are beautiful