Posts Tagged ‘socks’

Spunky socks

Thursday, March 28th, 2013

Today I finished my pair of socks that I’ve been working on for the last two months. They started off as the 100 g of Cotswald fleece expertly dyed and distributed by the good folk at Spunky Eclectic.
20130328-011037.jpg The yarn is thick and dense, perfect for the kind of socks that can keep you warm when wearing rubber boots. These are the most fun and classiest rubber boot socks that I’ve ever had.

I knit the socks on 2mm needles, toe up, with an after thought heel. Toes heels and ribbing were worked in black to contrast with the peacock tones of the body of the sock.

I am glad to be done this project, because I will soon be getting another package of fleece in the mail!

The Fastest Pair Of Socks…EVER!

Tuesday, January 1st, 2013

Welcome to 2013!!


Owen, my brother and sister in law’s cat, ringing in the new year in style!

Some projects seem to just fly off the needles, as if the yarn has been sitting and waiting to be turned into something useful.  This pair of socks that I’ve just finished is one such project.  I started the first sock 2 days ago while waiting for my freshly dyed fleece to dry.  Craving the variagation and uniqueness of handspun yarn, I knitted up some of my stash handspun with Kroy yarn.  I was feeling rather smart when I divided up the handspun into two equal portions before I started.  It worked out really well!  I really like how the stripes break up the handspun’s long and unpredictable colour changes.  The blue also join the pair nicely together by virtue of the contrast socksFor me, socks, and particularly striped socks hold a particular memory for when and where they were knit.  I will be able to recall with each change of colour what was going on at the time, who I was with, and those memories stay lovingly locked away in those stitches.

These particular socks have wrapped up the last moments of 2012, and the first of 2013.  They knit together moments spent with friends and family; moments spent listening, and helping, celebrating and being together.  These moments of connection will be cherished as I wear these cheery socks through the cold winter days.

new sock

Here’s my recipe (as much for my own reference as for anyone else)

These are toe up socks, Toe: I started with a figure of 8 cast on 20 stitches in blue, increase on alternating rows to 60 sts.

Foot: 7 rows handspun, 4 rows blue.  I did not do any heel gusset increases.

My feet are pretty big, so I worked 6 stripes of handspun before the heel.

Heel Placement: knit 2 rows of blue (of the 4 rows expected), knit 30 sts in waste yarn for an afterthought heel, knit remaining 2 rows of blue.

Leg: I continued the striped pattern until my handspun ran out, the socks are a bit shorter than I’d like, but that’s ok.  I worked 2.5 inches of K2P2 ribbing and cast off loosely.

Afterthought Heel: Carefully take out the waste yarn, keeping the 60 sts on 3 needles.  Knit a toe (decrease 4 sts every 2 rounds to a total of 20 sts, graft with kitchener st)


Tis The Season For Elf Slippers

Monday, December 3rd, 2012

December brings twinkle lights, snow, and best of all….it’s the only time where it is perfectly acceptable to wear elf slippers.  I made a pair for my dad a few Christmasses ago, and was so intrigued by the process that I have knit up some Cascade 220 from my stash into some child and infant sized slippers.  The free pattern from Flint Knits blog explains the entire process, from knitting the oversized slippers to felting them.beforeThey go really quickly since they’re worked on 6.5mm needles….child size…the pointy toes are a clever addition…infant size…as are the pointy additions to the cuffs.  With a quick trip through the wash (twice through worked really well), they are felted and drying stuffed with paper towel to keep their shape.afterI’m pretty pleased with the sizing of the child’s pair, but the infant pair seems to be really large.  If they don’t fit for this Christmas, they’ll fit for next year for sure!

Identical Crazy Socks

Thursday, January 6th, 2011

This is something that I’ve wanted to try for a while–thanks Santa for getting me Flying Saucer Sock Yarn from Schoppel Wolle and making it possible!

The spool of wool is wound with two strands, then injection dyed in a very small skein, so that when unravelled, each strand will form one ball, and if knit with the same needles and same tension, and from the same end of the sock, it will produce identical yet really crazy socks.  I’m keen on trying it out!

On Boxing Day my aunt and I set about winding the two balls from the one skein.  This is NOT AS EASY AS IT SOUNDS.  I don’t know how well it would have gone as a solo project–I was glad of the extra set of hands helping me out.

I didn’t see this video until later, but this shows how to do the unwinding.

The instructions state to pierce the center of the spool with a knitting needle/pencil, and suspend it with a string tied to both ends, looped from a handle or door knob.  That was easy enough to figure out.  The hard part came in the unrolling–maybe duelling ball winders would have been a good idea, but maintaining identical pacing of unwinding was the tricky part.  Just don’t be in a hurry when you are doing the unwinding.


I now have two balls of sock yarn ready to go!  I think toe up plain socks will show off the craziness the best, and allow for me to use all the yarn.

Feels Like Fall

Saturday, September 4th, 2010

Thank goodness for cold fronts!  The windmills have been turning like crazy, and the wind whipping through my windows, bringing with it the feeling of fall.  The change in weather has made such a difference in my day.

I woke up motivated to get things accomplished–starting with the last inch of ribbing on my vacation sock.  Drum roll please!  I hereby present the pair of completed socks (2 summer vacations in the making).  I’ve come to terms with the fact that this year’s vacation is done.  I think I might wear them on the first day of school, if it stays cold enough.

Sock 1: completed during my vacation in 2009 to Jordan and Egypt.
Sock 2: completed during my vacation in 2010 through Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts.
Pattern: my regular toe up sock pattern
Yarn: Regia sock yarn

The rest of my day included lots of sorting and organizing and cleaning both the bathroom and kitchen, and then (after a little nap) I cooked up a big pot of vegetarian chili–a delicious way to clean out the fridge!

somehow food pictures don't ever look as good as the real thing

My Recipe:

  • 1 very large onion (cut into small pieces)
  • 1 green pepper (cut into small pieces)
  • 2 carrots (cut into small pieces)
  • 1 can diced tomato
  • 1 can kidney beans (drained and rinsed)
  • the end of my salsa and tomato juice
  • textured vegetable protein (TVP) to soak up the liquid and look like meat.
  • pepper, chili powder (to taste)

Yale to Whales: Journey of a Travelling Sock

Monday, August 30th, 2010

First of all, I’d like to thank all of my guest blogging friends who have shared their knitting adventures over the past month while I was out having some adventures of my own.  This past month has been a whirlwind of road trip and camping adventures with my friend Evan.  For the full story check here.

Of course, I brought along a knitting project with me–a sock!

Pattern: My recipe for Basic Toe Up Socks (Ravelink)

Yarn: Regia self striping sock yarn of some variety

The first sock was knit while relaxing on the Nile, and chilling out in the desert with the nomads last summer.  I started this sock when I was staying at my cousin’s house in Connecticut on my first evening on the road.  We watched a movie, and I knit, trying to stay awake and figure out “who done it” before the film ended, or I fell asleep.  I had never driven more than 3 hours in a day before, to either Toronto or Montreal.  This day marked many firsts: first time to drive across the border, first time to drive almost 7 hours in a day, first time to meet my cousin’s baby girl who is now 17 months old.

The next day I continued on my journey, visiting Yale campus…

…and skirting the coast of Connecticut and Rhode Island so I could see the ocean before heading to Providence to meet my friend.

sunset at Watch Hill Rhode Island

We camped in Myles Standish state park, and then visited a near by cranberry bog to see the crop as it grew, then we followed some signs to find the Ocean Spray cranberry processing plant.

Ocean Spray, Carver MA.

The next stop was Cape Cod, where we visited some gorgeous beaches, played in the freezing cold surf, and went whale watching!  We saw so many humpback whales, but either because they moved so fast, or I was too excited, or the boat was lurching too much on the swells, I ended up with very few good pictures of whales.  It was such a spectacular day, even the naturalists on board were excited by what we saw.  This whale was much more cooperative, posing for a picture with my sock.  I had to wait a while for all the passing kids to get off of it.  For some reason everyone wants to ride whales (even Evan).

Dolphin Fleet Whale Watching, Provincetown MA

After our stay on the cape, we explored Boston museums and aquariums, then went to Six Flags New England, all of those places were far too exciting for knitting.  Things calmed down a bit when we returned to Providence to get Evan all settled in his residence room and get things like student cards and meal plans figured out.

Brown University, Providence RI

At the end of my journey, just as I was preparing to leave, Evan’s panda was willing to pose with my vacation socks.  The completed one was the 2009 version, and the one that is almost done is the 2010 version.  They match, up to a point.  For some reason, there was a knot in the ball of wool for the 2010 sock, so the stripes suddenly reverse their orientation.  Now I will know which sock is which!

Evan's Room, Providence RI

I have not yet finished this summer’s sock.  I think it is because I am not willing to admit that my vacation is over.   I’m going to wait until the last possible moment before I finish those final rows of ribbing, cast off and weave in all the ends.  There’s something symbolic about finishing this project for me, something that signifies the end of summer, the end of my adventures, and the beginning of a more structured and stressful routine for the next 10 months.  I need to take time to make this transition.

Here’s the question you have been asked each September of your youth…What did you do on your summer vacation?

My Bags Are Packed

Thursday, August 5th, 2010

I’m headed off on Saturday for a little bit of a vacation on the east coast of the USA.  A friend and I are roadtripping and camping through Massachusetts, and spending some time on Cape Cod.  Relaxation on the beach, seeing the sights, whale watching, museum hopping–all sounds good to me!

image source

I’ve packed up all the necessary camping gear, and all that remains is to pack up my knitting.  My plan is to work away on sock #2 of the pair that I started last summer on my vacation in Egypt and Jordan (vacation pics here!).  Socks are a project that you can always keep with you for ferry/train rides, and these particular socks are very plain, so I’m sure I could knit them in the dark around the campfire too!  My travel companion has mentioned that he wants to try knitting….so who knows, maybe he’ll do a row or two as well.

One of the neat gadgets I picked up this year from was a set of sock needle protectors.

image source:

They are two cardboard tubes blocked off on one end, open at the other, with a slot cut in them large enough to hold socks/mittens in progress.

Hopefully this will save me from impaling my fingers, poking a hole in my bag, losing needles, or accidentally dropping a needle’s worth of stitches and having them unravel in my bag all day long.

I have several friends that have scars to prove the power of an accidental sock needle impaling.  I don’t need to tempt fate!

Tonight, I cast on, and we’ll see how things go.  I will do my best to blog from the road if I can find the internet.

Sock Inspiration

Thursday, July 15th, 2010

I’m having fun searching for inspiration on Ravelry now…but when the new search features kick in, I’m ready to have my socks knocked off!

I usually get excited about fiddly colour work or interesting lace patterns, but today I was looking for something extra creative and colourful.  Here are some of the fabulous socks I’ve found in my search today.  May you be equally inspired!

1.  These socks are remarkable.  I’m not sure how people come up with this kind of completely different idea.  The pattern is called Hexagons and it is by Kirsten Hall (blog).  I’m thinking of having a look at the book Think Outside the Sox (the source of this and many other inspirational sock designs).

Image source: Ravelry Pattern: Hexagons by Kirsten Hall

2. These socks inspire me because they are so cute, and the idea could be transformed to many other different kinds of animals.  The yarn she used is Opal in the colourway Tiger.  The pattern isn’t available yet, but there are notes so you could do it yourself….I think I might have to try it sometime!  Thanks so much to Marlene (blog) for her creativity and inspiration.

Image Source: Ravelry Pattern: Wovenflame's Tiger Toes Socks

3. These are a pair of knee socks (pattern) knit by someone who doesn’t usually make or wear socks.  Kelly (blog) sure did a lot of knitting!!  I am impressed by how they match, and that she dyed some of the yarn herself.  Really cool project.  They’d brighten up my day for sure.  I’d wear them with my rubber boots!

Image Source: Ravelry Pattern: Knee Socks by Diana Parrington

4.  The next pair of socks are totally different from anything I’ve seen before, or even imagined.  They are knit first, and painted later!  What’s cooler is that they look just like bananas–Who would have thought of that?!  Brigitte from Germany (blog–in German)–Here are the pattern notes for these socks.

Image Source: Ravelry

5.  Another great pattern from Think Outside the Sox, is the Lonely Socks Club:Entrelac Sock by Natalia VasilievaKirsten (blog) knit these lovely socks.  I’ve never tried the Entrelac knitting technique, but I really like how it looks.  These socks are unique because the entrelac part goes all over the heel and toe too!  Pretty amazing design work.

Image Source: Ravelry

What patterns inspire you?

Halfway There

Thursday, July 1st, 2010

Goal setting is a difficult art.  Setting a challenging, yet attainable goal is something I struggle with, particularly with my knitting.  The nice thing is that I know that if I don’t meet my knitting deadlines the world isn’t going to end, yet I continue to make lofty goals to challenge myself.

photo souce: Julie P. Miller's Flickr

My self induced challenge this month was to knit a pair of eclipse socks for the movie release June 30th.  Yes, I’m a grown up that lined up to see Eclipse….yes, I’m a grown up that went to a pre-party to watch New Moon again before Eclipse…..We did this before the New Moon movie, and I’m sure that we’ll be doing the same for the next in the series!

The past few days had been far busier, and I was far more tired than planned, and my poor little Eclipse sock was not much more than a toe on the morning of June 30th. It had been carried around in my bag most of the week.  Every time I reached in to grab my keys, or wallet I got jabbed by those double pointed needles.  (I am sporting a bandaid now from a key finding mission).  It was a constant reminder of how I should really take a minute to knit a bit and breathe a bit.

Finally at 4:00PM I had my chance.  I sat in a friend’s blacked out living room, and knit, watched New Moon being projected on the big screen while we all munched on delicious snacks, and had moments to breathe, and be silly.

I knit through the car ride to the theatre (I wasn’t driving).  I knit in line, and was glad that we were inside this time!  Arriving 1.5 hours early to the movie has its perks.  I knit in the theatre waiting for the big show.  I even turned a heel during the movie!  It’s not a perfect heel, but that’s proof that it was done in the dark. I knit at a coffee shop after the movie, and when we got kicked out–they were closing, we weren’t rowdy–I knit at a friend’s house.

Such dedicated crazy knitting allowed me to complete an entire sock by midnight on June 30th.  I’m halfway there!


Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

What are you doing between now and the 30th?  I’m not sure I have time to read the book AND knit these cool socks, but I’m looking forward to a night out to see the movie with some friends.  I’ll check the stash, and see if I have enough to knit up a pair.  It’s June, it’s rainy, my brain is tired, and I’m ready to knit something fairly simple.  Maybe I can get it done in time.

photo souce: Julie P. Miller's Flickr

Check out the pattern here [Ravelry].  It is a free download!

If you are looking for a smaller project to complete between now and the movie opener, check out these ipod/mp3 player socks.  These are also a free [Ravelry] download.

Image source Nancy Fry's Ravelry

For a blast from the past…check out these Twilight Cover Socks/mittens/gauntlets.  They are also a free [Ravelry] download.

Image Source: Chelsea21 (a buddy of mine)

A great stash-buster, and quick project for all your vampire obsessed friends….A coffee sleeve (or wrist band) with “Be Safe” on it.  It is available for free here.  [Ravelry]

Image Source: MyFairKatie's Flickr

Image Source: MyFairKatie's Flickr