Friday, March 30, 2012

Up-Down Entrelac--Joining Foot and Leg

I've completed the leg and foot of the second sock and am ready for the unusual join. The leg is worked from the top down to the ankle; the foot is worked from the toe up to the ankle.

The the stitches are joined across the instep with--those of you who dislike Kitchener stitch, rejoice--a three-needle bind-off. I was a little skeptical about the comfort of the bind-off sts across the top of the instep, but when I tried on the sock, I couldn't detect it.
All that's left is the heel, which is worked in a wedge on the remaining stitches (like an afterthought or peasant heel), and some sort of finish for the cuffs. Stay tuned.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Up-Down Entrelac--Second Sock

I'm making progress on the second Up-Down Entrelac sock (from Sock Knitting Master Class). I decided that there's no reason for socks this wild to match so I'm choosing the colors randomly for the mate. Still, there's a lot of similarity between the two.
For this sock, I'm making a point of starting each new color in a different place so that all of the yarn ends aren't woven in the same area.
I really am having fun with these socks!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

App Winners

Thank you all for your kind words about The Knitter's Handy Book of Patterns and The Knitter's Handy Book of Sweater Patterns!
The random-number generator chose Mystica103 for the Handy Patterns app and Chinders for the Handy Sweaters app. Mystica103 and Chinders, please email me so I can get the apps to you.

For the rest of you, thanks for participating and stay tuned for other opportunities!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Handy Sweaters--Register to Win

There's more! Those e-media folks at Interweave have also turned The Knitter's Handy Book of Sweater Patterns into an app for the iPad (sorry, I was told earlier that it was available for the iPhone as well, but that is incorrect). Appropriately called Handy Sweaters, this "handy" app, provides instructions for more than 1,500 sweater design options, including drop shoulder, modified-drop shoulder, set-in sleeve, saddle shoulder, raglan, and circular yoke silhouettes--all in multiple sizes and multiple gauges--at the touch of a finger.

Comment to this post (only one entry per person, please) and tell me why you'd like Handy Sweaters, and I'll draw a lucky winner Sunday, March 25.

Handy Patterns--Register to Win

Those e-media folks at Interweave have been at it again and now The Knitter's Handy Book of Patterns is available as an iPad (sorry, I was told earlier that it was available for the iPhone as well, but that is incorrect) app. Appropriately called Handy Patterns, this "handy" app, provides instructions for more than 350 patterns, including mittens, gloves, hats, tams, socks, scarves, sweaters, and vests--all in multiple sizes and multiple gauges--at the touch of a finger.

Comment to this post (only one entry per person, please) and tell me why you'd like Handy Patterns, and I'll draw a winner Sunday, March 25.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Up-Down Entrelac--First Sock

Ta-da! here's the first almost-complete Up-Down Entrelac sock (I'm still thinking of ways to finish the top of the cuff). This sock weighs 40 grams. I have 124 grams of yarn left, which means that there should be enough for 3 more socks, or another complete pair if the colors are mixed up!
I've therefore decided to use the colors randomly for the mate for a pair of wildly mis-matched socks.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Up-Down Entrelac--Toe

I was on the road teaching for the last week and had hopes of finding lots of knitting time. It turns out that I hardly knitted at all, but I did meet lots and lots of fabulous knitters at the Madison Knitter's Guild Knit-In, The Sow's Ear, Wool & Company, and The Fox Valley Knitter's Guild. I made some progress on the toe of the first Up-Down Entrelac sock on the plane from Denver to Madison.

I can't say that I love entrelac, but it does make for interesting knitting. I find myself wanting to hurry along to see how the next color will look. Since this photo was taken, I've joined the leg to the foot and expect to finish the sock tonight.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Up-Down Entrelac--Moving Along

I'm making progress on amazing sock and I'm happy to report that it is growing much quicker than I anticipated. If I could only get my head around knitting-back-backward, I'm sure they'd be a breeze! I'll be at the heel soon, at which point I'll set this segment aside and work the foot separately from the toe up.
I do love all the "random" colors but I'm definitely not looking forward to weaving in all those ends!

Friday, March 9, 2012

My Go-To Socks

The first edition of Sockupied devoted entirely to new socks knitters, Simply Sockupied, features my "go-to" sock pattern for knitting socks from the top down at 8 stitches/inch. Five sizes are provided to fit from children's shoe sizes 1-4 to women's 12-14/men's 11-13 shoe sizes.
 Click here to download the pc versionclick here to download the mac version.

These socks feature the stretchy but sturdy Old Norwegian (also called German) cast-on; k3, p1 ribs around the leg and instep for a comfortable fit, a round heel with heel flap and gussets, and a wedge toe finished with Kitchener stitch. You can see the socks in my designs on Ravelry.
Whenever I want a mindless project for traveling, this is what I invariably pack in my bag. Wouldn't it be fun if everyone made a pair?

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Up-Down Entrelac--Begun!

I finally go over my hesitations and plunged into Kathryn Alexander's eye-candy Up-Down Entrelac socks from Sock Knitting Master Class. As the name implies, these socks are partly knitted from the bottom up and partly from the top down. But they begin with an entrelac strip that's knitted side to side and joined into a tube. Then stitches are picked up along one edge and worked in rounds to to top, where they are finished with a series of triangles. I'm not convinced that the triangles won't bunch up under my pant legs, so for now I've put the stitches on a holder and will decide how to finish them later--maybe with a decorative bind-off instead.

For my version, I decided to put all 30 balls in a bag and pick colors randomly as needed. I can hardly go wrong since all of the colors look so good together in the bag.

The next step is to pick up stitches around the base of the tube and work the leg down to the heel. I admit to being a little overwhelmed by the number of ends there will be to weave in...

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Too Much of a Good Thing

It seems that there can be too much of a good thing.
Interweave is in the process of designing the text for The Knitter's Handy Book of Top-Down Sweaters into a user-friendly visual treat of a book that just keeps going and going. The book was contracted for 232 pages but I seem to have written enough to fill more than 300--who knew I had so much to say?!
We've compromised and Interweave will increase the page count to 264 and I've agreed to cut the entire modified drop-shoulder chapter from the print version (it will be included in the e-book). I'm still mourning the lost chapter but I do believe that modified drop-shoulder sweaters are the least likely to be knitted from the top down and I'd rather cut that chapter from the print version than increase the cover price.
I know that some of you have pre-ordered the print book (the e-book isn't available for pre-sale yet) with the understanding that the modified drop-shoulder chapter would be included. I'm sure that Interweave will issue a refund if you'd like. On the other hand, the book will be loaded with information about circular yoke, raglan, set-in sleeve, and saddle-shoulder sweaters and you'll get 32 more pages of charts, tips, variations, and inspiration for the same price!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Up-Down Entrelac--A little delay

Well, I was all set to start Kathryn Alexander's Up-Down Entrelac socks last night, but I realized that all of the mini-skeins needed to be wound into balls. It took more than an hour for me to wind all 30 colors, at which time I decided it was too late to start. They look so pretty in the morning light that I'm still reluctant to start knitting.

I'm torn between trying to match the colors to Kathryn's originals and letting serendipity determine the colors I use. I can't wait to see what I decide!