Thursday, April 3, 2008

Holy Sox!

I have returned from a trip to visit my friend Sue in Richmond, VA.

We took trips to see Jefferson's home Monticello and also to the Jamestown historical site. Here's Sue trying to escape from the palisade surrounding the settlement. Behind her are some graves that have been excavated and then refilled with shells. Behind THEM is an archeologist at work!
This was our sunny day. Sue was apologetic about the weather every other day, but I was enjoying the redbud in bloom. And dogwood! None of that in Michigan yet.
On the plane I decided that since I couldn't do any quilting handwork while there (I NEVER have any quilting handwork to take anywhere!), I would look into learning how to knit SOX. So many quilt blogs seem to also include SOX
Right away Sue knew where there was a knitting store, and we hit the place right from the airport. I found some interesting variegated yarn that I was told would make STRIPED sox without yarn changes. I got a set of instructions. I got a set of FIVE (!) double pointed needles. And I went home to Sue's house.
Here's what I learned as I worked away at it every evening from Saturday throughWednesday:
* The "three needle method" of knitting socks takes FOUR needles.
* You need longer stretches of one color to make stripes.
* You can knit while having a conversation, or while "watching" television, unless the directions are getting tricky for the heel.
* Turning the heel takes a lot of concentration.
* "Picking up" stitches from the side of formerly knit piece is also tricky, yet they don't think they need to write out any directions.
* WHEN to start making the sock smaller for your toes is also a bit tricky. Even if you measure your foot the way they tell you, your sock could end up too long.
***And the LAST thing I learned was that I really SHOULD have made that little piece at the beginning where you CHECK YOUR GAUGE. As you can see from the photo, this sock looks like a Christmas stocking next to the regular crew sock or the kneehigh nylon. Well, I DID want it to go pretty high up my calf--put I also was hoping it would hold on once it got there. Wants to slip down to my ankle.
I went back to the store. The ladies there helped me do The Kitchener Stitch to tie off the toe, and then told me I should get tinier needles to tighten up my stitches--but not yet! First I need to make the second sock so I have a pair! Hmm. Is that a pair I want to have?
Well, I have half a skein of that yarn left--so I guess I will.
Such a good time with Sue!
On time flights, no delays
Home again, home again, jiggety-jog

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