Tag Archives: socks

Ravelry Roundup: Uses of Variated Sock Yarn

Well I haven’t done one of these for a while, it’s about time. I’ve been poking around Ravelry as you do and now I’m going to reveal my finds.

Like many of my round-ups, this one has been driven by the question “what the hell do I do with this spare yarn??”. Specifically crazy sock yarn. Crazy sock yarn is a very marketable product. You only need one skein to make something useful with it, therefore dyers can go absolutely nuts without fear of not selling it. There are two main types of crazy sock yarn:

Skein-dyed: Here the dyers have wound the yarn into a skein about a yard long, and dyed directly on to it. It looks terribly pretty in a skein as a result, and knits into a fabric with very short streaks of constantly changing colour. Like this example from the Yarnyard

YY

Self-striping: Yarn with much longer colour runs, giving you stripes as you knit, with none of the effort. So much fun! Recently I bought a great example from Easyknits.

ww1

So what can you do with this stuff that’s interesting? I have found several examples. They are roughly arranged in ascending order of complexity/mentalness. Let’s begin.

Slip-stitch patterns

With short colour runs, the occasional slipped stitch produces a very small break in the colour. A single slipped stitch may not be noticeable, but a repeated pattern produces a magic-eye effect quite nicely!

Confetti socks by Mimi Hill

Pair with a solid

Sometimes, when you have particularly crazy sock yarn, it needs a sensible straight man to play off. You can have a 50/50 split of crazy and sensible, like these socks here:

Ugly Duckling Socks by Karin Aida

Or you can really punch up a basic colourwork pattern with no extra effort. Nice!

knitschygirl’s Paper Dolls jumper

Use on biased lace patterns

By biased lace patterns, I mean ones where the pairs of yarnovers and decreases that form lace are distinctly far apart, causing the fabric to pull in different directions. Works particularly well with self-striping, like in this version of Cookie A’s well-known sock pattern, Monkey.

gretchenknits’ Monkey socks

Show off odd construction

Getting a little crazier here…if you have a pattern with an unusual twist in the knitting, nothing will show it up like crazy sock yarn. Look at Skew. Q.E.D.

Skew by Lana Holden

Planned Pooling
Ok this is like, ninja-level knitting. Do you have the patience to measure colour runs? Do you like maths? Are you possibly operating on a higher plane of conciousness? Then line up your crazy sock yarn and see what happens.

mamapantsx3’s Stack of Zombies project

That’s right, this was done with just a regular commercial hank of sock yarn. And magic.

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FO: Stripey little socks

Just as you finish off a nice pair of cosy socks, the sun comes out: Such is knitting!

I made these from one ball of Rico Design Superba Santa Fe. I had enough to make the stripes match up, but not the heels. It’s hard to care though, when there are more pressing matters to think about. BBQs, for example.

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Knitting And Crochet Blog Week – Day 6: Improving Your Skillset

Today’s topic is all about levelling up your knitting-related skills. But instead of just talking smack about my mad skillz, I’m going to get proactive.

You see, there is one particular unmastered skill I’ve been wilfully avoiding: Sock- darning.

My first ever knitted sock took 3 years of battering before finally getting a hole in the toe.  It shall sit around at the bottom of my sock pile no longer!

THRILL!! As I darn a sock before your very eyes!

MARVEL!! At how long it takes me to find the right colour of yarn!

WONDER!! At the barely adequate results!

So here is the sock and here is the hole. Luckily it’s pretty small and just caused by snagged yarn, rather than overall thinning from wear. Oh and it sits entirely inside a grey stripe. Very convenient!

Today I will be following the Knitty guide to reinforcing socks. I have assembled my tools…

Favourite needles, darning mushroom, scissors and leftover sock yarn

and the next step is to unwind the leftover sock yarn until I hit a grey run. Unfortunately Opal sock yarn has some pretty long colour runs, so 9 metres of yarn later, I finally get to some grey.

Let’s face this hole head on and get to the darning.

STEP 1: Horizontal running stitches. The nice easy part. Doesn’t it look neat so far?

STEP 2: Vertical running stitches. These must weave in and out of the horizontal ones. Not too shabby-looking if I say so myself!

STEP 3: Attempt at duplicate stitch to hide the darning and all ends. Ok, I got a bit lost here because the stitches blend into each other so much…

The end! It’s kind of lumpy, but I think I did ok. This is definitely the most thrilling post I’ve written all week.

***

All of my Knit and Crochet Blog Week posts are collected here

You can read everyone else’s Day 6 posts here.

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FO: Melted Ice-cream Socks

The craziest socks I ever did knit.

They’re very spring-appropriate but I must confess I not in love with these socks. They’re perfectly good socks though. They’re a comfy fit, the pattern is cute, the yarn is nice to work with and the colourway was such fun, it’s just…sorry socks it’s not you, it’s me. I just can’t bring myself to take you out in public ok? You aren’t office-appropriate and you don’t go with any of my shoes! Maybe you can sit inside my boots sometime. Just as a platonic thing. No, please don’t cry, you’ll make my toes all damp.

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Two odd little socks

I am now half-way through the second of my eye-bleedingly bright Froot Loop socks. This is obviously the perfect time to get distracted by something else, forever.

Recently I nipped over to my local yarn shop to pick up an order of Christmas present yarn I’ve been waiting on for a while. I also managed to completely disregard my own advice and pick up some self-striping sock yarn on the fly. Whoops.

But let’s look on the bright side! Self-striping sock yarn is an excellent way to perfect a basic knitted sock whilst still producing an interesting result.

In particular I’ve been wanting to perfect the wrap-and-turn short row method of working toes and heels. All my previous attempts have been kinda holey and asymmetrical.

Cue some internet tutorial love : Eskimimi Makes is the new name of Eskimimi Knits; a blog that went down, and recently resurfaced with all the best photo-tutorials intact. Those sock tutorials are great!  After dropping down a needle size and following the aforementioned tutorials….

Looking marvellous!

And that’s when I went ahead and finished the whole sock. Yup, I knitted two whole socks in quick succession, but I still don’t have a pair.

Oh those poor lonely unpaired socks! Too different to ever get along! Still, it feels like an improvement over 2011, where I knitted roughly half a sock every 3 months.

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Knitting ridiculous socks

I usually stick to knitting sensible stuff. I don’t care to look like a crazy knitting lady, even if I am one. I aspire to knit stuff that makes people go “OMG where did you BUY that!!” so I can look smug and be all like ” Well, actually….”

But then I nabbed this Yarn Yard sock yarn in a swap. The colourway is ‘Ice Cream’. Isn’t it delightfully eye-searing? Neon pink, neon green, white and light brown: A winning combination.

One of the harsh lessons newbie knitters must learn is that if colours look awesome in a skein, they will look like vom when knitted up.

Froot Loop socks WIP

This is the Froot Loop sock pattern from Knitty. It’s a cute pattern, but oh man, this sock is nuts. I am under no illusions. However sock knitting is vastly more entertaining when the yarn keeps changing colour under your fingers. This is just over a week’s worth of knitting. Compared to previous socks this is just flying off the needles isn’t it?

This is a short blog post because I am running off to finish these ridiculous socks! Byeeee!

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FO: Winter Mansocks

As the year draws to an end I’ve fitted in another sorely neglected project around my fervent jumper knitting: Winter socks for my honeypie, T. When I say “neglected” what I mean is “I intended these to be his birthday present back in June”. God I am just an awful girlfriend! Apparently I have a major problem getting enthusiastic about socks. I just kept casting on new projects for some reason.

“What about my socks??” T would cry every time I started a new jumper “Make me socks!!”.
“I’m sorry I’m taking so long!” I would reply (as I began a sleeve) “But I totally did some rounds on it last week and I will definitely have it done for Christmas it’s just that I want to get this sleeve done and it’s fine I can totally work on it and and…”

Oh the guilt (and the Christmas pressure) finally got too much. Here are the socks, made to T’s exacting specifications.

Winter socks

Action socks

Action shot!

They are quite simple toe-up socks (my first attempt at toe-ups) made with Regia 4-ply. It’s a nice dependable sock yarn that can take plenty of punishment. I really winged it on the toes – half the total stitches were cast on provisionally, then I did the classic w&t shaping until I could pick up a full 72 stitches. I used the “Suprisingly Stretchy Bind-off” on the cuffs and it works a treat. I would like to show it in more detail but black wool is just not the camera’s friend!

I’m quite pleased with the little stranded improv at the top too. It has the side effect of tightening the fabric so the socks stay up better.

Sock colourwork

It wasn’t so hard to knit after all, and now he can have warm toes for Christmas. I wish to issue a public apology for my tardiness: I’m sorry about the socks T!

Also, I wish to give credit to his contributions to the blog: He named it, has been lending me his camera ever since I broke mine, and is also behind several of the pictures on here. Those socks are deserved!

Now that our relationship has officially survived sock-knitting I have half a mind to attempt a jumper next year. I don’t see it being too hard. T is a simple man. All he requires is nice long socks and a baby alpaca/silk mix tactical turtleneck.

Tactleneck

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