Things were going so well. And yet, after a bang-up period in March that included two FOs and more than 1,000 yards knitted, I entered some kind of fugue state; just like Groundhog Day, I started the same socks over and over. I was willing the Punctuated Rib socks to work out with every fiber of my being, but yarn choices and stitch counts conspired against me. In the Large size, my chosen yarn behaved beautifully, but the sock was too big. In the Small, I fretted over pooling and flashing, but a sock I feared would be too ugly to look at fit just fine. So I changed yarns, and the dance started all over again. I started these socks a dozen times if I started them once, and in the end, I felt it’s not right to hold a grudge against your knitting. So I moved on – sort of.
Instead of finishing the Oak Ribbed Socks I bragged about almost having finished in my last post, I started another sock two times over, the Crossing Cables sock by Danny Ouelette, which I love, and which is also not working out to my satisfaction. My problem is that the photo here is probably the worst photo I could take of the blue sock on the right, and the best possible photo of the green sock on the left – in reality, they’re both “meh” for different reasons, and in danger of becoming one of those projects I myself might look at and say “How could she have chosen that yarn? it doesn’t go with that pattern at all.” [People who knit lace socks with self-striping yarn, I am looking at you - ed.]. I think it’s back to the drawing board for these…
On the bright side, I started another long-stashed project recently, Lucy Neatby’s Sea Lettuce Scarf – it’s charming, there’s no pooling or flashing, and though it’s going slowly, I’m enjoying watching it develop rather than dreading what surprise the next turn of the needles might bring. If you’re going to cast on, you might as well have something to show for it.
I am still not buying yarn, but it’s not very blog-worthy to say “once again, nothing new!” I have finished the SuperSecretKnittingProject (which I swear you’ll see the second I get the OK), and my lovely Jaywalkers. Specs: DROPS Fabel 901, a Christmas gift from my cousin. I liked the yarn, and the fit is pretty good – I didn’t run into any “I can’t get this over my ankle” issues. The stitch pattern is the opposite of ribbing (little negative ease, little give), but they’re super-cute and I’m happy. The Fabel also softened up in the wash, so I’m liking it a lot, yarn-choice-wise. First Eye of Partridge heel, and yet another picot hem – I am wondering if I’ll ever get tired of how cute they are.
And just when you thought I had exhausted my fascination with self-striping yarn, I present you with Nancy Bush’s Oak Ribbed Socks from Knitting Vintage Socks, started at the end of March, due to be finished within hours of this writing. This may be the best story of my knitting career: I admit here that this pink and brown yarn almost made me fall off the yarn diet wagon after two and a half months, because as much as I loved the SuperSecretProject, I was ready to be knitting something else. Blogless Melanie sees my post and offers to swap with me – a week later, I have yarn and candy, courtesy of Melanie and Canada Post. Thank you, Melanie!
Two FOs complete means that I have knitted up 1100 yards and have about 4300 yards to go before I reach the magic “20,000 yards remaining in stash” threshold. I already have 3100 yards actively WIPping right now. How did that happen? Doesn’t that seem like a lot? Honestly, it’s probably Lizzy, the Noro sweater with just 3/4 of a front left to knit. It might also be that I had a tiny bout of startits – why finish something old when you can start something new and fresh? I can trace the source of the startitis to Sock Knitters Anonymous. The April challenge to knit an underappreciated pattern (15 or fewer projects in Ravelry on April 1) was irresistible to me: I have not one but two prime sock patterns ready for love in my queue. Look for an appearance shortly from Ann Budd’s Punctuated Rib Socks, found in the splendid Knitting Socks with Handpainted Yarn. I’d be far enough along to show you something, but I foolishly started the large instead of the small, so there’s been a little ripping and the re-knitting is still in progress. The other sock pattern? So underappreciated, I’ll be the first project…I feel I have to, since I’ve wanted to make them for years (See? I asked Melinda about them in 2004). I’d take a break from self-striping for that.