Saturday, December 13, 2014

Socktoberfest (or is it Desockember?)

So it's been a long time since Socktoberfest but I honestly have not been hung over for all this time. I swear. (Even though I did have really bad hiccups this afternoon. While shopping. It was embarrassing. Wait...are hiccups a stereotype for when you're drunk or hung over? I have no idea. And are we still using the word "stereotype" or do I have to say "meme" now? It's hard to keep up when I've been doing all this Socktoberfesting...)

The bulk of my sock knitting in October was on a Christmas gift. I wasn't sure if I was going to show them to you all, but I just finished the last fiddly finishing work and I don't want to wait!

Apparently the first picture I took of these socks was when the knitting was completed:
I mentioned that they were a special shade of blue and now you can see why.

I had seen similar socks on Ravelry and decided to make some as a gift this year. When I went looking for specific patterns, the one I ended up liking the best was actually just a chart for the leg design. You were on your own for the rest of the sock. Considering I usually ignore everything but the pattern design in sock patterns, this was perfect for me.

The chart was writen for 80 stitches, however, and I reduced it to 60. Many people reported that 80 was too big and I was making them for a smaller foot. (Although I am really, really nervous right now that they won't fit. Let's hope that's paranoia talking and not experience.)

Although I worked quite steadily on them in October (as far as I remember), they were not done until November 8. Then they sat, waiting for the final touch--the embroidery.
The original pattern called for the letters to be knit in fair-isle style but since I was converting from 80 stitches to 60, I thought it would be easier to do them at the end. My first plan was to duplicate stitch them, centering the letters on the front of the sock, but the thought of duplicate stitching over the black background just made me sad.

So I copied another Raveler and stitched the letters with simple embroidery stitches. It was still a little saddening to try and get the letters even and matched. (Those four "O"s were stitched a number of times each, I can tell ya!) But it's done and I like it.
As long as they fit...
Project Stats
: 13 Sep '14
Finished: 8 Nov '14
Pattern: Tardis Socks by Gina Waters (free)
Materials: Cascade Yarns Heritage Solids & Quatro Colors ($14.75) in a pretty convincing Tardis blue colour of 5603 Marine (.6 skein). I also used bits of black wool and white wool/angora raveled from sweaters.

Since I don't have a lot of progress pictures to show you, I'll give you a little tip instead. I stitched the letters with a double strand of white yarn. Now I used to thread the yarn on the needle, pull the two halves even, and make a knot:
But then you've got a knot at the end and ends to work in. (This is for sewing. For embroidery, I would skip the knot but leave a length of yarn that had to be worked in later.)

Instead, I now thread both ends of the double strand through the needle like so:
That leaves you with a loop at the other end. When you start stitching, you can put your needle through the loop on the wrong side after the first stitch:
and there will be no knot and no end to work in:
This is still showing the wrong side. Now that the end
is secure, you can continue stitching.
I thought this was genius when I first saw it. Hope you like it too.

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