Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Barrel of secret monkeys!

Look what I got today! Just what I needed to get in the mail on this somewhat difficult day: A spring-y card, some chocolate, and a green package of yarny sock love!

See--my socks from my Sit n' Knit Secret Sock Exchange Knitter:

MONKEYS in a perfectly ewephorically Penelope pinky-plummy-purple!

They fit perfectly and match practically everything I knit. Except I don't think I've ever knit socks in this color. These are socks I didn't even realize I really needed, so thanks, Sukyong!

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Merry Janes for Jane!

Yay! Sit n' Knit just completed its Second Annual Secret Sock Exchange. Just look at all the beauties that the creative women of this groups bestowed on each other. Some socks were by newbies, some socks were handspun or hand-dyed or self-designed or some combination of many features and the list goes on. I think many people were as happy to GIVE the socks as to get the socks!

The socks I knit for the lovely Miss Jane went through a series of identity crises, false starts, and finally joy in a new creation (or re-creation).

I knew that Jane had, um, larger-than-my-own feet. So I wanted to go toe-up. I also knew from discussions that she no longer believed in 100% merino for sock yarn, did not like to do cabling on socks, and preferred socks that were stretchy and able to stay on. Ok--toe-up, cables, ribs, and sock yarn with somethin' in it for strength.

I found the Big Basin socks from the Six Socks Knitalong group while searching with these tags on the much beloved Ravelry site. But the socks seemed somehow too tame and safe to knit for someone with as much knitting chutzpah as both Jane and I have! So I did what I am beginning to love to do--make-up a pattern using someone else's work as a starting point. Is that stealing? Anyway, the Rebecca A. who designed the Big Basin socks also recognizes Cat Bordhi's influence on the sock design, so there ya go.

Pattern: Merry Janes (based on the Big Basin socks)
Yarn: Fleece Artist Sea Wool in "Rose Garden"
Yarn enabler:
Needles: Size 1 Knitpicks Harmony Circulars--two socks at time, donchaknow.
Time I spent hiding this knitting from everyone: One month--March 25th to April 24th.

Uh, fly in the ointment? While Jane does have Size 10 feet, I made socks big enough to fit an WNBA player and needed to for them to be shorter so that they would fit properly. I knew that I had been overly generous in sizing them when I had completed the heel flap and started on the leg, but I didn't want to do anything until I saw the socks on Jane's feet. Yup--too big. That was not going to do.

So- here's the process of shortening completed socks--laid out in medical terms (kinda) in honor of Jane's acceptance into med school. Go Dr. Merry Jane! Thanks for the encouragement/guidance in fixing them this way, Erin!

Sock in pre-op--putting in the row off stitches where the new toe will start.

First incision into the sock--snipping one stitch and then unraveling one line of stitches.

Sock toe amputation complete--sock toe separated, but rest of sock still intact!

New toe knitted on and ready for suturing!

Healthy, thriving, post-op socks! Yay!