Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Up Next

I'm not finished knitting for John yet. Up next is a pair of socks in Mountain Colors Bearfoot yarn. The color is called Granite Peak.

If you knit socks for very long, you will probably settle on a technique or pattern you go to over and over again. My favorite is Priscilla A. Gibson-Roberts' short-row technique that she explains in her book Simple Socks Plain and Fancy. In the preface of the book she states:
When the technique is understood, the execution thereof becomes mindless. This allows you to knit plain socks mindlessly (even when brain-dead) or to put your energies into the design of the sock when an elegant accessory is the goal.

I wasn't sure about that statement the first time I tried short-row socks. It was all so unfamiliar and took lots of concentration. But the next pair was easier and soon after, I could knit a short-row sock without thinking about it. Now I can pick up a ball of sock yarn, grab a set of needles and knit a sock that fits well without ever having to look at a pattern.

Just because I'm sold on short-row socks doesn't mean you will like them too. Judging from the sock patterns out there, more people prefer heel flaps. It's good to experiment to find out what suits you best. Some people like to knit socks toe-up; some like top-down. There are those, like me, that prefer double pointed needles and others that like circulars. What's your favorite way to knit a sock?

This simple pair of socks is knitting up quickly since it's the only thing on my needles. I'm almost to the toe...short-row, of course.

24 comments:

  1. Love the color! You are so amazingly fast!!
    Suzanne

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  2. Double-points, top-down, heel flap! That's me all the way. Love that colorway you are using.

    Hey, your hat for your husband is fantastic, so rugged and perfect. Great idea to combine patterns to make it just right in every way.

    Thanks for sharing.

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  3. The color of the yarn is so warm.
    I have not knit socks yet. I want to I'm just a little apprehensive about taking on socks. I know that I should jump right in!

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  4. I have never done short row socks. I should look into this. The only ones I have done have been the ones with a heel flap. Yours look lovely and I like the idea of just knowing the pattern and being able to pick up quickly. That's my kind of knitting!

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  5. The yarn you chose has a wonderful colorway. I really like it.

    I'm a heel flap knitter. I prefer the fit and the ease of knitting.

    The socks I make are anything but fancy. Most have ribbed cuffs because they stay up. I have knit some lace cuffs, but prefer the rib fit.

    I do the kitchener toe exclusively, too, again because of the fit.

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  6. That yarn is wonderful...love the color-play! You are so amazing with socks...I have yet to master sock knitting, I can knit much else, but still working on socks. My mother-in-law very lately knitting a lovely pair of violet-colored socks for me--how perfect handknit socks are!...So I have socking knitting as my winter goal! :o) Hapoy Days ((HUGS))

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  7. I like the short row knitting on toes, but I have never been able to get a short row heel to work for me. I prefer the look of the short row, but I always end up getting frustrated with it and go back to the heel flap. Your sock looks really nice! It surprised me to realize how easy sock knitting is and it really can be mindless. It seemed so complicated and daunting in the beginning of that first pair.

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  8. Oh it depends.

    Socks with a pattern I like DPNs, top down, heel flap.

    Plain socks I knit magic loop, toe up, short row heel.

    I love the colorway of those socks. Lovely.

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  9. Looks great! I prefer DPN cuff down (maybe because I haven't tried toe up) heel flap...one time I tried short rows and the socks fit horribly. I should probably try one more time just to be sure, but I just can't bring myself to!

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  10. Very pretty yarn!! I still like my DPNs much better than circular needles, and that goes for ANY project in the round. I must remember to try short-row heels! I keep forgetting to do that.

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  11. Traci, thank you for sharing about this. I have yet to learn to knit socks. It scares me somehow. I'm going to have to come back and SLOWLY read up on this technique. If it makes it easier to knit socks, I'm all for it. The heel flap is what scares me actually. I've done the top part cuffs, not hard at all. I just don't know how to turn a heel, as well as the toes part. And I love the yarn you used! You have such a knack for choosing such pretty yarns.

    Your Dh's hat looks great! Looks like a very intricate pattern. I think it's very nice!

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  12. I'll do whatever the pattern specifies, and either dpns or circs are fine. My generic memorized pattern uses circs and features a heelflap and is top-down.

    I like Mountain Colors yarn!

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  13. What a perfect time for this post! Just when I'm trying to figure out how to make a short row heel (well, a few more pattern repeats before that happens).

    Right now I'm trying out the magic loop...and liking it. I went with toe-up...because I fear grafting the toe!

    Hmmm so how do you do a short row toe, when you knit from the cuff down? (Is that a dumb question?)

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  14. That yarn looks really soft and nice. I like to do top-down socks with dpn's and a heel flap. I should try short row heels sometime though, I might like it!

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  15. Great yarn. I love the way it is striping. Nice and masculine. I am a dpn kind of girl. Top down with a heel flap. I have tried a short row heel with dk weight yarn before. But picking up the wrapped stitches makes me nervous becuase I am afraid I won't be able to see the where the wrapped stitch is with the fingering weight I usually use. I really like the look of a short row heel especially in a self striping yarn.

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  16. The yarn looks lovely, and you've done them so fast. Do you always just focus on one project or does it vary?

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  17. I'm a top down, heel flap, short row toe and double-pointed needle gal. I am very interested in learning to knit a sock with two circs, but have no interest in knitting two socks on two circs. Go figure. I really like the yarn you're using.

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  18. My sock knitting experience is limited, and I've not done short row socks yet. I will try them someday, though.

    I love the yarn you're using.

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  19. People love to comment on socks! That colorway is very handsome. I prefer DPN, top down, heel flap and round toe (there are other toes I like, too). I've tried the other methods and they either don't work (for me) or don't fit.

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  20. The yarn is really nice, I love the colors and I have not tried this type of sock before (on my 5th pair of socks) knitting with 2 24" circular needles which travels well and I don't end up loosing the stitches. I just discovered the eye of the partridge heel and I think it's quite attractive, Criminy Jickets blog has a delightful basket weave sock pattern.

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  21. I agree with you about the PG-R short-row heel; it's my fav so far. I find a short-row toe more fun to knit, but I don't see any difference between it and the standard toe. I want to try garter stitch short row heels next. Then I'll try a toe-up sock with a heel flap, then the Houdini sock, then the toe-up heel, no flap, no wrap. There's so many ways to knit a sock. I'll try them all before I settle on my basic pattern.

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  22. dpn's, top down, eye of partridge heel flap with a short row turn is my mindless grab a skein of yarn and go favorite. It's fun to try new things ~ but it's also true that we knitters gravitate toward what we know! Love the colorway!

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  23. Thanks for another recommendation I need to try. I always shy from socks:-) I love that color!

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  24. what a great sock - the colors flow so beautifully around it.
    Me? I'm a heel flap kind of kid. Ever since I took a class with Charlene Schurch, I've been totally sold on this style.

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Thank you for commenting!
~Tracy