Friday, June 09, 2006


Self-designed baby hat/mitts
At last. It. Is. Done. I now have a completed hat/mitts set, and I have to say, they are pretty freakin' cute.

Carrie K asked if I would be showing pictures of them, and the answer, unfortunately, is no, although I would really love to. Y'see, I'm putting together a book of baby patterns which I hope, ultimately, to be able to publish. And I'm not comfortable with the idea of showing pictures of patterns that I intend to sell before I actually try to sell them. :)

As pleased as I am with how the hat and mitts look, though, I am really, REALLY going to have to change the pattern significantly before I ask other knitters to shell out money for it. There is just way too much duplicate stitching on the hat the way I just did it. Moreover, I think the motifs would look much more spectacular done in smaller stitches. So for the next iteration of the pattern, I'm planning to switch to stranded knitting instead of intarsia, so that the duplicate stitch is mostly eliminated (although there will still be a little bit to avoid torturing knitters with having to strand five colours over a single row). Also, I will be using fingering/sock weight yarn instead of sport weight. Hopefully I can pull it all off without driving other knitters totally crazy.

Self-patterning socks for DD
I kept going on sock #2, and found that I came up about two rows too short with the amount of green-and-white yarn I had left. That's okay, though. The next segment of the colour sequence was blue, and I had some extra blue, so I did two more rows of blue than were worked in the first sock, and - tadah! - at the point the blue finished, the colour sequence was back to being identical to the first sock.

Flash forward to the heel (not pictured below), when I discovered I had the opposite problem with the red portion of the colour sequence - in this case, I had more for the second sock than I had for the first sock. However, I didn't bother trying to even it out because it's not that obvious. So I kept knitting until I ran out of yarn for the second sock.

Sadly, this is what the two socks now look like:

Yeah. Olive green stripe at the top of sock #1, no olive green stripe at the top of sock #2.

But...I have a solution! I'm going to unravel sock #1 down to about three rows into the olive green. Then I'm going to attach the other end of the olive green to sock #2 and knit about three rows with that. Then I'll keep alternating olive green rows on each sock until the olive green is almost all gone and the socks are attached by only a very short length of olive green, which I will then cut in the middle.

But I won't have finished the socks yet. Oh, no. I still have a fairly decent chunk of blue yarn attached to the beginning of sock #2 (since I had to start sock #2 at a very specific point in the colour sequence in order to match up with sock #1). There's probably enough blue there for several rows on each sock. So I'll do the same thing with that leftover blue as I will do with the olive - join one end to sock #1, knit a row, join the other end to sock #2, knit a row, and continue until the blue is all gone.

And yet, I will still not be done. Because I will still have to cast off.

For that I will be using some leftover blue-and-white yarn from this sock project. Same yarn, different colour. Since the colourway of DD's socks is very 'rainbow', the addition of a new colour into the sequence will not seem at all strange. There should be enough in this leftover length of blue-and-white to cast off for two socks.

Then I will be done. And DD's socks will be identical, and she will love them, and I will have used up all the Fortissima Colori Socka Colour yarn that MIL gave me for Christmas. And I will be very, very happy.

This is the theory, anyway.

Stay tuned for the practical execution.

Taupe socks for Dad
Before I can start on my grand scheme for finishing off DD's self-patterning socks, I need to free up my second set of sock needles. And that means completing sock #1 of this pair. It's getting close - I'm just a few rows away from starting the top ribbing.

(And thank you, Carrie K, for saying the sock looks good. :)

Unfortunately, the number of stitches on this sock does not lend itself to my being able to perfectly transition the cables on each side of the sock into the ribs at the top of the leg. Phooey. I love being able to make cables transition seamlessly into ribs. So I'm going to have to come up with some other way to start the ribbing that looks good. I don't know what that way is yet, but I'm going to have to figure it out pretty soon.

Stornaway sweater for DH
Gussets are in full swing!

Right now I'm at eleven stitches on each gusset. Dividing for the armscyes occurs once the gussets are nineteen stitches wide. So I'm definitely getting there.

And after doing almost ten inches (on small needles with thin yarn) of the same motifs over and over again on small needles with thin yarn, it's really nice to be able to do something a little different now. It's sad to say that a gusset increase every four rows is saving my sanity, but I think it's true.


Tanya said...

Ah-ha: gussets!

Lovely to see you last night, m'dear!

Carrie K said...

Gussets. I love gussets, for some odd reason.

Not posting a pic of an unpublished (yet) pattern is sensible.

You self striping matching sock people! Y'all slay me.