Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Just suck it up and drive on

I made the sanity-saving decision to pick up those Jaywalkers and just finish them. I was past the gusset decreases, after all, so all I had left to do was finish the foot and do the toe. I got the foot done on Saturday and thought I'd get the socks finished that night. I was mistaken.

I like to do short-row toes. The problem with that on these socks is that there are 38 instep stitches (because the pattern pulls in) and 32 sole stitches, and you have to have the same number of stitches top & bottom to make the short-row toe work. So I thought I'd do the decrease rows from the pattern, but only on the instep stitches, until I had 32 stitches on the top of the sock. I did my short-row toe, and counted the stitches on the needle. 31 -- I lost a stitch somewhere. I ripped out that toe and reknit it, and it worked out right this time. So I grafted it -- one sock done! Or not... the toe of the sock looked a bit like a Bell Curve. I was so disgusted, I didn't even think to take a picture before I ripped it out. Hmm... I'll just rip out the decrease rows, rearrange the stitches so I have 35 on each needle, and do my short-row toe. See? That works -- except that now my sock toe has ears.

Fourth try: I realize the problem is that on the instep pattern, you do an increase at each side, causing the sock to flare when you transition to stockinette stitch for the toe. So I ripped back 6 rows, and reknit them in pattern, except that I didn't do the increases on the first and last instep stitches. And voila! at the end of those 6 rows, I have 32 instep stitches to go with my 32 sole stitches. I managed the short-row toe without dropping any stitches, and finally finished these socks. Yarn is Opal Rodeo #1153.

This whole process took me until sometime on Monday. As soon as the Jaywalkers were done, I started the Glad Ragg socks for the Six Sox Knitalong. I really like the yarn I'm using -- it's Fortissima/Socka #1060, a 4-ply sock yarn with 1 strand of black, 2 strands of gray, and the 4th ply is a bright variegated strand. I'm using a 40" addi turbo, magic loop method. I was a die-hard dpn sockknitter. I had tried 2 socks on 2 circs, but didn't like the extra needle ends flopping around.

I tried magic loop for the first time back in November (and it turned out to be a good thing, as the 2 skeins of yarn differed in color enough that it was noticable, but if I hadn't been making both at the same time, I wouldn't have realized the difference until I had finished the first sock and was well into the second, and then only if I looked at them together). One of the biggest advantages is that both socks are finished at the same time -- no lonely sock waiting for its mate while you get distracted by other projects. And they'll have the same number of rows on the non-patterned parts, without having to count over and over again.


Theresa said...

Those jaywalkers are beautiful! I had to rip mine out because I can't read instructions, and had the same # of stitches for the bottom and the instep. Well, duh. I'll pick them up again - someday.

Katie said...

Beautiful jaywalkers! The colors look fab--toe looks nice. Glad Raggs are looking good too! It's such a fun pattern, don't you think?

Ann said...

Great Jaywalkers! And congrats on figuring out your conundrum...