Friday, December 27, 2013

Two Socks, One Week: We're Almost There...

So, tomorrow you'll see the first of my pre-composed knit-along posts. I'm starting a day in advance of our scheduled start time (Dec. 29) because I want to give you a bit of a head start. You'll be able to read, if not begin, on Dec. 28, if you so desire.

But today, having just started the pair of socks I'll be knitting while we all knit along (I had to finish the KAL socks ahead of time because, um, had to take photos!), I have a couple of interesting things to tell you about how I've shaken things up with my latest pair.

Of course, you too can try these alternative ideas, but the pattern - as it stands - is still the pattern we'll work from (and which the photos will refer to). Note: I have found a couple of small errors in the pattern, my apologies. They're not tremendously meaningful (you'll have no problems) but they drive me crazy. After this KAL, I'll post up a revised version. But won't have a chance to do so till next week at the earliest.

Anyway, my current socks are different than the pattern version in that:
  • I went down a needle size for the rib portion. (Great idea for loose knitters out there...)
  • I used the cast on from the Eastern European video linked to in this post. It is SO much better, so much stretchier, than the long-tail cast on version I found on (not that I'm not grateful for that version, since I've used it until now).
  • I changed up my rib from K1P1 to K2P1. It produces a stretchier rib (great for tight knitters out there) and it also gives a more refined look. Frankly, it's a prettier rib - especially if you knit loosely.
And finally (but I do NOT recommend this for you! I'm playing fast and loose):
  • I am knitting in 2 different styles on this pair of socks - and I'm seriously improving with my chosen alternate method: flicking. Flicking is actually a variant of right-handed knitting (British style), which is very appealing to me because, truly, I prefer to knit right-handedly. It just comes to my brain more naturally than the left-handed version (at least at the moment). The difference between my regular style (see the magic loop videos for a visual) and this new style is that flicking requires you to keep your right hand on the needle at all times and to use your wrist action and index finger to pivot the yarn (vs. "throwing" the yarn). I've chosen to alternate one row of my regular British style with one row of flicking - so as to maintain some semblance of tension constancy. Let me tell you, this learning (previously applied to swatches of different needle sizes) has been SLOW going. I'm starting to approach the same pace with flicking as I achieve in my regular style, though not consistently, so I can see how it is likely to be MUCH faster, in the course of time. Undoubtedly, and fantastically (from my vantage point), it is incredibly efficient.
So, there you go. BTW, I'm using the remainder of that manly glove yarn for this pair of socks. That yarn has been a real hit. Everyone loves it.

And I am keeping this pair for myself. Really.


  1. Belated Happy Holidays to you:) I've made a start on my socks already - I was really keen to see how the whole magic loop thing worked! Your video made perfect sense to me and I was surprised how quickly I got used to it. I'm looking forward to the KAL, and I've just started my blog up with a link to your sock kal.

    1. Thank you and to you! I'm so thrilled to hear you've started - and that the videos make sense! (That's hard to do, let me tell you...) Off to check off your blog.

  2. I'm behind! That seems to be the natural state of my crafting life. In any case, I swatched last night and am planning on conquering the first three rows of magic loop tonight. Thanks for all the effort that has gone into this KAL.

    1. Don't worry! There is no "behind". Just get started as it suits you. We can chat about it on the weekend...