Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Designs: latest off the needles ...

Well, I just finished off these Julenisse socks ... literally, just tucked in all the ends and they are ready to wash and block.  I just couldn't wait to show 'em off, though!  I do toe-up, 2-at-a-time on circs ... this allows me to change the pattern as I go.  These have a striped toe (yellow and cream), a solid, smooth charcoal grey foot, short-rowed garter stitch heel, cabled leg and then a bit of two-color patterning on the cuff.  The red in the cuff design remind me of the Norwegian knitting during WW2 -- to thumb their noses a bit at the occupation Nazis, the Norwegians added a bit of red to all their knitting!  BTW, the name "Julenisse" is Norwegian for "Christmas elf".

One of the problems that often occurs with cables in socks and two-color knitting is the need to increase neatly so the cables fit the leg.  Here, after finishing the heel, I increased from 48 to 60 sts to accomodate the 6-stitch cable pattern (4 cable twist sts + 2 purl sts).  The purl sts make a "rib" that helps form to the leg.

The two-color knitting portion is started right after the 6th twist; I then do a final charcoal purl row, increasing 8 sts for a total of 68 sts for the cuff.  Since these socks will come up about mid-calf, I need a bit more and the two-color knitting will pull in slightly.  Note, I REALLY need to work on my round joins on the two-color portion (lower sock in the above picture) -- hopefully, when the socks are worn, no one will notice the "jog" as I'll wear it the socks so the jogs are on the inside as I walk.

A further consideration when knitting socks like these is the finish work:  make sure the inside looks as neat as the outside:  all ends should be tucked in, the carrying for the two-color knitting should be even and NOT tight.  All bits and pieces need to be as smooth as possible to ensure a comfortable wearing.

These socks are knit with Dale of Norway's Falk -- a washable wool -- knit on #2s.  48 sts for the foot; 60 for the cabled leg; 68 for the cuff.

Here's a close-up of the knitting on the cuff  ... loose but not too loose, ends tucked in and out of the carries to ensure a smooth fit.

Another project, that I had to put these aside for a bit to complete, were NINE hair-bun covers for String Bean's ballet class in co-op.  I needed to finish these in time for Wednesday (12/2) dress rehearsal, with the performance on the 9th.  This is our Christmas gift to these wonderful girls ... the design was fun to create and the knitting went pretty fast -- just something that I had to do at night when I could make one in about 2-hours worth of movie-watching.

They came out nicely ... I'll post pictures of the performance -- making sure to get pictures of the girls' hair!  These are knit on #4 dpns using Vanna's Glamour from Lion Brand -- an acrylic yarn with a bit of sparkle twisted with the yarn.
So, what are you knitting?

Happy knittin'
Mary C. Gildersleeve
By Hand, With Heart -- hand-knit designs

1 comment:

Carmen said...

Beautiful socks! I don't know how to do toe-up or 2-at-a-time yet. I'm barely getting the hang of regular socks on DPNs. I'm knitting up a storm though. I'm knitting another Wallaby sweater for Luke, a lacy jumper dress for Tess, a cabled scarf and beret pattern I found on Ravelry...so much fun!