I have partial yarn skeins, like, many partial yarn skeins (truth be told, a small tub of sock yarn). Do you have this problem too? I think about donating those partial skeins, selling them on eBay, or knitting another scrappy blanket (see this post: End of an Era), but I just keep telling myself that I can find something to do with them. Here’s one option I’ve come up with: Helical Socks.
Here’s what I started with: 25 grams of red Cascade Heritage Sock yarn, and 17 grams of Beach Bunny Yarns World Traveler (leftover from this project: Vacation Knitting). I am using the red for the cuff and heel (and maybe the toe if there is enough?)
I started sock #1 and knit through mid-instep. Then I decided to start sock #2 by knitting from the other end of the balls because I’m not sure I’ve got quite enough for two entire socks. (Don’t worry…I have other yarn that can finish the toes of these socks!) It’s kind of messy knitting from two ends of two balls so I can’t take it to meetings or knit in the car, etc. As I take knitting breaks, I carefully lay it out so I can pick it back up again without many tangles.
Not sure what Helical knitting is? Need a tutorial? Click here: Helical Knitting Video and thank Jen of Arnall-Culliford Knitwear for her great Year of Techniques Tutorial!
Two posts ago, I wrote about my brother requesting five pairs of socks this year. I made fun of him a little, because, seriously, he doesn’t know the time and effort put into just one pair of socks, let alone multiple pairs! I knitted one pair of fingering weight socks for him (thumbnail photo below) and delivered them to him after a day spent on planes. Oh, we also raided our snowbird dad’s sock drawer (with permission!) because Dad spends winters in Florida–brother gained about 6 pairs of handknit socks in this fashion.
Then, THEN, my brother told me a few important details about the socks that he wants. He said he only wears the socks to bed, making me think I could get away with knitting sport weight socks for him since he won’t have to worry about fitting thicker socks and his feet into his shoes. He also said he doesn’t need the legs of the socks to be as long. Bingo! Now I can knit a few more pairs for him at a larger gauge and almost fulfill his wish of 5 new pairs this year.
BONUS PAIR! I had two skeins—slightly different colorways—of this sport weight yarn, realized if I combined the leftovers, I would have enough for another pair of socks. Yes, I did! I used a helical knitting technique with the socks below. Maybe one day I’ll write up a pattern for a helical sock.
We flew the coop for Spring Break in a desperate attempt to feel more normal. We boarded a plane and went to visit kid #1 and hubby (and 2 doggies)…for once I only packed two knitting projects, a shawl and a pair of socks.
This shawl was a great traveling companion, easy and fast, especially on a size 6 (US) needle. It’s a great reminder of our family trip to Florida last summer! I dropped the kids off at the jet ski place (don’t worry, they’re adults LOL) and drove about 7 minutes to an awesome LYS in Ormond Beach, Florida, called She Sells Yarn. I’m always pleasantly surprised to find yarn shops in warm places. It was an hour well-spent—“spent” being the operative word!
The other project I brought was sock knitting for my brother. The last time I spoke with him on the phone he offhandedly said, “Hey, I need 5 more pairs of socks.” Ah, the uninformed comments and requests of non-knitters. I told him he could expect exactly two pairs this year, nothing fancy, no cables, twisted stitches, etc. So he’s getting (with love) plain pairs of socks.
This is always my go-to sock yarn, lots of colors and long-wearing.
I had a three balls of Fixation left and I knitted 3 more pairs of Goodbye Summer Socks. Of course I sent two away before I took photos…one for daughter’s birthday, another for coworker who was recovering from medical treatment. Here’s the one that I did take pictures of:
Have you tried it yet? Got a spare ball of Fixation or DK yarn hanging around? Go over and get the pattern on Ravelry. It’s only $1.00!
I’ve been knitting through these quiet days, but I haven’t finished as many things as I thought I might. Yes, there has been knitting in the evenings, but also sewing, stitching, and general peaceful projects to try my hand at.
First, I’ll mention that I bought an embroidered wool skirt at a second hand store (4 years ago?!), not because I wanted the skirt, but because I wanted to turn it into something else. I finally settled on turning the skirt into a bucket bag. Wow! That’s a change, huh? Check out the pictures:
OK, so I cheated and bought some leather handles from Amazon ($15) even though it took a week for Amazon to ship because everyone was obsessing about toilet paper in March.
I knitted some socks too. Two pairs. From 100 grams of the main yarn. To squeak out two pairs, I used some contrasting yarn for the cuff, heels, and toes for the larger pair. I just made a stockinette stitch leg and used the Arne and Carlos afterthought heel to show off the yarn and to just get this yarn out of my stash! Someone at church passed this yarn on to me. Thanks!
I hope you have found some peaceful quiet times during this pandemic to relax and work with your hands!
I want red socks. That’s one thing. Every time I go to my handknit sock basket, I notice that I don’t have any red socks. And I need some. Desperately.
Another thing: I wanted to try the FlexiFlips double pointed, needles so I ordered some.
I started knitting on the size 3.00mm (US Size 2) using Heritage Sock yarn (a personal favorite for plain colored socks), but that yarn was too thin on this size needle, and the fabric was fairly floppy (alliteration intended). Then I remembered that Patons Kroy seems to be a thicker yarn, slightly heavier than fingering, but maybe not quite a sportweight. So, yeah, I ordered some of that too. It’s really working well with these needles!
Therefore, this February, in addition to banging out a sweater (maybe more on that next week), I am knitting red socks (Thing 1) on my new FlexiFlips needles (Thing 2).
The pattern I’m using is Octoberfest Socken by Susan Dittrich. Check it out on Ravelry…for free!
About 15 years ago, I came to the happy realization that I was equally comfortable with purling as with knitting. I’m not sure why it took so long. But I remember as a child I would always finish with a purl row if knitting stockinette stitch, so that the next time I picked up the project, I would do so willingly because I would be on a knit row. Every project was subject to this rule. Hated purling. Doesn’t everyone, at first?
But lately I’ve begun to realize how beautiful the knit stitch looks as it travels along in a field of purl stitches. Texture. One of the features that makes this craft of “knitting” so beautiful. Perhaps I should call myself a “purler” instead of a “knitter”!
It’s raining and my back hurts. I guess I’ll blog.
Knitting has been a bit rough lately because my back is aching. The good news is that I’m on the mend, after many physical therapy (brutal!) sessions, and now visits to a chiropractor. I am now able to sit and knit for a bit. Sigh…
But the little knitting that I have been doing has been creative! I test-knit a pattern for a friend, and I’ve come up with a simple design for a checkered heel and a stripey toe. Even though I only have one sock finished, I think you’ll get the idea about what’s happening. And I’m not the type of knitter to leave a sock unknit. I want to wear these! I used Brown Sheep Company’s Wildfoote Luxury Sock Yarn (75% Washable Wool/25% Nylon), color: Licorice. Love it!
For the checkered heel, I grabbed some contrasting yarn and knit the first 2 heel flap rows, slipping every other stitch on the right side and just purling the wrong side. Then I changed back to the main color for the next two rows. The heel flap is about 28-32 rows long. At the point where I turned the heel, I used the main color only.
For the stripey toe, on the decrease rows I changed to the contrasting yarn, and used the main color yarn for the other rows. Except I did the first decrease on needle 1, and then I started the contrasting yarn on (what I refer to as) needle 2, so that the woven-in-end wouldn’t be on the bottom of the sock. This made for a perfect end with the kitchenered main color.
Wouldn’t it be fun to use up lots of crazy sock leftovers doing this? I think it adds a bit of charm.
I haven’t blogged in a while, having come off a very difficult year of teaching. Don’t get me wrong; the kids were great. So read between the lines about the “not great” part. (Yeah, 75% of the teachers in my hallway yelled at the students constantly. ) But that year is done. I have changed positions, schools and districts, and I’m ready to start tomorrow! Here’s a picture of my 3rd Grade Knitting Club. The kids learned a lot, and I got them off to a good start. We only learned how to do garter stitch, but most of them had someone in their lives who could add to their needlework knowledge, either crocheting or knitting. I’ll miss them so much. They were fabulous! They’d come to club saying things like, “Oh, I can help her do such-and-such because I saw a YouTube video on that last night!” Oh, my heart, isn’t that sweet?!
80 Stitch Sock Pattern
And now, on to my new sock pattern. I am going to be putting out free sock patterns that are named according to how many stitches you need to cast on. If you are familiar with fingering yarns and how many stitches you need to cast on for, say, men’s socks or women’s socks, then these patterns will help you. The patterns are usually just plain ribbing or a simple cable thrown in. So just grab a Stitch Dictionary and make your own design! This first pattern is called 80 Stitch Sock Pattern-update. Enjoy!