Thursday, August 21, 2014

Netherlands Travel Socks

Here they are...the socks that I knit all through the Netherlands.
Although I had fun dying the natural light brown of the alpaca/wool mix, you can see the final result is a little strange. The orange and red blended pretty well, but there is no blending in the other colour changes. A bit jarring. But oh well, still fun to knit and stripes are always a good way to mark progress.

I adapted a pattern that was knit from the cuff down so I could knit it from the toe up. I started with my standard short row toe.

Then I adapted the unusual heel construction of the pattern. Leaving the top stitches, I knit short rows on the sole stitches so that the heel almost came to a point:
Then I picked up stitches along the angled sides of the heel and knit up the leg, decreasing the extra stitches to make a gusset:
I should have picked up a few more stitches because the gusset looks a little stretched to me. It probably would have been better to make the sole a touch longer too, but all in all I thought it was a pretty good conversion.

Then I worked my way up the leg. I made some increases part way up. I think I could have started that a little sooner too. But the fit is well within comfortable limits.
I started a 1x1 ribbed cuff when I thought I was near the end of the wool, but it ended up being quite a long cuff. (I guess I could weigh the wool one time and then I would know for the next time, but I guess I like the gamble of the guesstimate method.) When I got really close to the end of the wool, I did my normal Kitchener bind off and ended with two pieces of wool about 8" long. That's using up the ball!!
Although I didn't buy this yarn in the Netherlands, the socks still carry my memories of the trip. I knit them while visiting with relatives, traveling on the plane and trains, relaxing in the evenings and any time there was a wait. I was surprised how few people also knit but of course they all knew what it was. The cable needle was a real novelty, not to mention doing two socks at a time with "magic loop". Amazement abounded.
I think I mentioned that no one thought one pair of socks would keep me busy for a two week trip, but they sure did. I got the heels turned and a good start on the orange colour but the rest of the leg was knit when I got home. One reason is that my hands were busy with a camera most of the time! :)

Project Stats
Started
: 19 May '14
Finished: 12 Jul '14
Pattern: Show-off Stranded Socks by Anne Campbell (free)
Materials: Alpaca/wool blend (100 g) from Oak Meadow Alpaca Farm ($14.75), home dyed with Koolaid

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