Adventures in Sock Knitting
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Posts Tagged ‘WIPs’

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WIPs – Lucy Hat

One of my 2014 knitting goals is to cut my WIPs in half. I am not a monogamous knitter, and I don’t want to be! I enjoy having projects going for various moods and knitting situations. I can’t knit complicated lace and/or cables while watching movies, so I need a relatively simple project for that. At knitting group I can watch my knitting, but I don’t want anything *too* complex.

So while I do want to have multiple projects, I think that 37+ is a bit much. And as I go through the process of reducing my WIPs, I want to understand what got me into this predicament in the first place. So I’ll ask myself a few questions:

Why did I start this project?
Why did I put it down?
What was preventing me from finishing it, and do I really want to finish it?

If I don’t really want to finish it, I’ll go ahead and rip it out. If I do, I’ll try to figure out how to get started on it again so it can soon become a finished project!

Today I’ll discuss one project that is no longer a WIP… my Lucy Hat.

Why did I start this project?

My friend Karen was wearing one that she knit, and I tried it on and thought it actually looked cute on me unlike most hats. I decided to knit one for myself.

Why did I put it down?

For the Lucy Hat I really don’t have a very good answer to this question. I’m pretty sure I was knitting it at movie night and started the crown decreases, and then the hat became too small for the 16″ circular needle and I needed to switch it to DPNs or Magic Loop.

The thing is, I could have done this as soon as I got home. I own both DPNs and a longer circular in size 6, which is what I was knitting on! But… I didn’t.

What was preventing me from finishing it, and do I really want to finish it?

The answer here is pretty silly. I think the only thing really preventing me from finishing it was that it was out of sight zipped up in a project bag. There was really no problem with the hat, and I had the needles necessary to finish it. So today I opened up the bag, grabbed my longer size 6 circs, and had the hat finished in less than 30 minutes. That included finishing the decreases, weaving in ends, and tacking down the brim.

Lucy Hat

It’s a little crumpled because of its long stay in the project bag, but nothing a little blocking won’t fix! One down, ~36 to go.



My knitting group companions Erin and Jessica of the Doubleknit Podcast have decided that 2012 is the year of FFS – the Finish, Frog, and Slog along.

As someone with far too many WIPs, I think this is a splendid idea. So here’s my first finish:

I started these plain socks for Halloween, but as you can see it took me a while to get to them. I like wearing plain stockinette socks, and I have a lot of variegated yarn, so I try to keep some going most of the time.

Started: 10/6/11
Finished: 1/19/12
Yarn: Crash Into Ewe in Monster Mash

So, after finishing these plain socks, I started another pair in the yarn I dyed at Stephania’s class. It started off like this:


And changed to this:


And is making some interesting striping socks, which I’ll show you in a bit!

I’ve also been putting in some time on some languishing non-sock projects, but more on that later.


A couple more FOs

I went to a holiday party for my knitting group, and a couple of things happened.

We have a gift exchange, and I got this lovely yarn spun by smallsmallfaery:

It’s about 130 yards of Romney, and although it says 11wpi, which is a worsted / aran weight so it will be perfect for my big Chevron blanket*.

And I was thoroughly embarrassed that nearly everyone was wearing a Noro Striped Scarf, and mine (which I started ages and ages ago) was still a WIP. So I got motivated:

Noro Striped Scarf

Pattern: Noro Striped Scarf
Yarn: Noro Kureyon in colors 40 and 233, 2 skeins each
Started: 1/18/2009
Finished: 12/18/2011

So, just shy of 3 years later I have finally finished my scarf! I feel pretty silly admitting that, but I just don’t often get into the mood of knitting something in 1×1 rib. Now that it’s done I’ve been wearing it most days!

Then while traveling for the holidaze, I finished a much more recent project, Melanie’s 2011 Birthday Socks.

Yarn: Sophie’s Toes in Grandma’s Blueberry Pie
Started: 11/6/11
Finished: 12/24/11

Melanie modeled them and had the idea of posing with the lights leading from the tree to the plug, so we did.

*another WIP I really should put some stitches on

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First off, Stephania graciously lent me a picture of my socks hanging in the Three Fates Yarns booth at Sock Summit:

L to R: Jera, Falling Up, Intercalate, Isaz

I’m pretty sure that’s the end of Sock Summit stuff, so moving on…

Skew is one of my old WIPs, Started February 12, 2010 – let’s hope I finish it before it’s 2nd WIP birthday. Shortly after starting it, I heard a lot of people were having problems with the fit. And, given my very high instep, I worried.

Skew, toe and foot

Then I learned about the high instep mods on the designer’s blog, and a KAL for Knitty patterns inspired me to work on it more.

After the “inner ankle” increases

I think for me, the issue was that the sock is simple, but not *that* simple. It requires a bit of concentration, but doesn’t have quite enough interest to hold my attention during the straight foot section.

more increasing, and see the bump where the heel will go?

I like my knitting either interesting or boring, this pattern is intermediate and switches back and forth too often for my knitting style.

separating heel stitches

But after finding about the high instep modification, I was convinced to persevere.

grafting the heel – hope you like Kitchener!

Besides, I really wanted to figure out if this thing was ever going to become sock-shaped!

hmmm…. still looks funny

It doesn’t really appear all that sock-shaped…


… but it fits, I checked.


First Socks

As predicted, the Fruity Monkeys were the first socks of the new year.

Yarn: Claudia Hand Painted Fingering in Passion Fruit
Pattern: Monkey by Cookie A
Started: 12/27/10
Finished: 1/3/10

Eight days, and believe it or not I worked on other things in the meantime. Mostly Girasole, which *will* be finished while the new year is still young. :)


A few years ago I had an idea about matching up stash yarn with patterns, putting it all in brown paper bags, and creating my own sock club. The Yarn Harlot later blogged about a very similar idea. (I have a feeling this was during the Fiber Cult era, since I can’t find any mention of it on my blog but I *know* other people heard me talk about it.)

Anyway, I never did it, and this year I’m not quite doing it as planned, but I have decided to knit at least 24 pairs of socks and to choose two specific ones to complete each month. One simple pair, and one more complex. I’ve decided that WIPs count for this purpose, and this month’s picks are Monkey – finished already, go me! – and Leafling from the Rockin’ Sock Club in March 2008. (Yes, I’m behind, what?)

Hopefully this will help inspire me to finish some of the longstanding WIPs and also to get things done in a timely fashion.


A pattern I test-knitted also just became public. Though I usually knit socks 2 at a time, this is just the one finished – knit single in the interest of time. The second one is a bit into the leg, but not one of my designated socks for this month.

Yarn: Girl on the Rocks Superwash BFL Nylon in Caddy
Pattern: Desmondus Socks by Chrissy Gardiner

I believe this is my first purchase from Sock Summit that I’ve knitted up… well, partially.

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Summer of Stash

After finishing and mailing my secret and complicated project, I was glad to be able to get back to some simple knitting this weekend.

I got quite a bit of knitting done on Blurple Waves, and thought about taking a better progress picture. Of course, I didn’t get around to it until after the sun went down, but it works:


As you can see, it covers my double bed, and is almost halfway done length-wise! Java thought she would help me take the picture.


Which was appropriate since her brother Pan was so helpful with my designing earlier.


As for the post title… I’ve decided to knit from my stash this summer. No new yarn! I have a lovely bunch of yarn already, and I just picked up some more on the LYS tour in May. I figured the summer would be a good time to focus on using yarn I already have. And because I don’t think I really showed it much after I moved, here is the stash in its home… the knitting nook.

the nook

It lives there with my knitting books and patterns, my spinning wheel, and the little table that I like to photograph yarn and socks on.

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The Moment You’ve All Been Waiting For…

I finished my Nebula socks.


Pattern: Nebula
Yarn: Lorna’s Laces in Lilac
Started: 4/14/09
Finished: 9/27/09

The detail in this picture is better:


Yes, it’s been a very long time. But, you see, I have second sock syndrome and it is a horrible condition.

You may have noticed that I almost always knit my socks two-at-a-time on one long needle. There are a couple reasons for this – one being that then the socks turn out with exactly the same number of rows and have the decreases starting at the exact same moment and all those lovely things that make my perfectionist self unreasonably happy.

The other reason is that I can crank through a single sock in no time at all, but once it is complete it takes me ages to finish the second one. My Conwy socks took well over a year, if I remember correctly.

I have also found my Leyburn sock and partial-sock and am working on that too. Time to clear out those WIPs!


Sock WIPs for Summer!

I participated in Summer of Socks this year, and my goal was to finish WIPs. Well, SOS ended at the beginning of September, but since I was under the impression that it would go until the end of summer, I decided I would work on sock WIPs through the end of the summer.

Yet another finished sock WIP – this one was from Labor Day Weekend, but did I blog it? Of course not!


Pattern: Kai Mei by Cookie A
Yarn: Dream In Color Smooshy in Go Go Grassy
Started: 5/26/09
Finished: 9/4/09

I just noticed those were started Memorial Day weekend and finished Labor Day weekend. Go figure!

And a little detail of the stitch pattern:


This is a wacky stitch pattern. Not hard, but definitely different. It turns out beautifully, though!

I made some really good progress and finished some socks that had been languishing for a long time, along with a few new pairs. My goal is to finish my second Nebula sock before the end of Summer (which is September 22nd, for those of you wondering).

So far I have this:


I only have a few more repeats until the heel, and the foot honestly goes nearly twice as fast since the bottom is stockinette. Those little cable twists, while gorgeous, are very time-consuming. For some reason the spiraling isn’t showing up on the left sock. Hopefully it will when the sock is being worn.

My other sock WIPs include my second Leyburn – which I would try to finish if I could find it… I’m going to do a bit more searching tomorrow.

I also started a couple pairs of new stockinette socks to work on while watching movies or riding the bus:

The Candy Corn socks – these were supposed to be self-striping, but I think they’re cute even though they don’t stripe.

candy corn

and my little sister’s birthday socks:

bday socks

The yarn is Lisa Souza “Little Devil”, which I bought a few years ago with my sister in mind. It’s rough being a blue lover with family members that love red and black. 😉


Knitting Fun

Thursday evening I went to Stitch & Pitch. I learned that Seattle was the first city to do one, and I believe this year was the 5th. My socks had fun hanging out at the ball game.


Then Saturday morning the same socks and I headed down to Salem. The socks got finished on the train!

summer 1

Pattern: Summer!
Yarn: Knit Picks Essential in Dusk
Started: 3/4/09
Finished: 8/28/09

Then I got to give Snarfy her socks, which she tried on:

snarfy socks

They fit! And I think she likes them!


Now, my goal for Summer of Socks this year was to finish my sock WIPs. It’s ending September 1st, but I had been thinking that it ended at the end of the summer (September 22nd). So, I’ve decided to continue working on sock WIPs for the rest of the summer.

Next up? Kai-Mei.

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Socks and Winners!

Well, it’s time to announce the winners of my contest!

The first prize goes to MJ, who guessed 20 pairs worth of sock yarn – which is exactly how much I bought! She’ll be getting the Toe-Up book.

There are two runners up who guessed 21. This is a “more correct” answer than 19 because I actually came home with 21 pairs worth of sock yarn, just one of them I didn’t buy and I realized the question for the contest was how much I bought, and also one of the 21 is not for me. This question was more complicated than I realized!

So Tece and Dawn are the two runners up – I’ll email you copies of Falling Up. (Tece, I need your email!)

In the past few days I’ve also finished a couple pairs of socks.

blackhearted blues

Pattern: (Black)hearted
Yarn: Dream In Color Smooshy in Night Watch
Started: 8/1/09
Finished: 8/21/09

twisted flower

Pattern: Twisted Flower
Yarn: Dream In Color Smooshy in Wisterious
Started: 3/10/09
Finished: 8/25/09

Sorry for the blurry picture, the beautiful twisted stitches don’t show up with flash and I apparently couldn’t stand still enough.

I started the Twisted Flower socks so long ago as twin socks with MJ, but I got distracted when I hit the heel flaps. Also, there is a 38 stitch by 49 row chart for the foot, and that requires a bit more attention than my usual knitting situations allow. But the past week or so I decided I’d go for it and put on an audiobook and just did it. And I’m so glad I did!

Listening to: Heaven Beside You ~ Alice In Chains

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