Favorite Thing Friday: Fireside Socks

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My sock knitting adventure continues with another pair of straight needle socks. After surviving the disaster of a totally failed attempt at straight needle socks, it was to nice jump in again and find success. In order to start fresh, I selected a new pattern, new yarn, and bought new knitting needles. Apparently, all that “new” paid off because I ended up with a super cute pair of socks!

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Fireside Straight Needle Socks
Photo by: c.b.w. 2014

For these socks, I used my favorite yarn, Paton’s Kroy in Aqua Jacqaurd. Lucky me, I got this yarn on sale for only $2 a skein. The pattern is called Fireside and comes from Knit Your Socks on Straight by Alice Curtis.

The pattern for these socks put up a fight right from the start as I realized it was riddled with errors. I loved the texture of the pattern so much, I decided not to give up. After doing some research online, I found the errata and was able to correct all the mistakes. Anyone else who attempts these socks should do the same. Trust me, you’ll end up with great socks if you put in the time to fix the pattern.

I hit a milestone with these socks as they are the first straight needle socks I’ve made where I had to knit a texture over the top of the foot while maintaining a smooth stockinette stitch on the instep. This can be a bit a tricky as straight needle socks split the pattern into two sections with the instep in between. Knitting even in pattern, while also working an instep takes a good memory and a lot of patience! But, I did it!

The success of these socks has pushed me to try something I’ve avoided up to this point. It’s no secret that I hate knitting on double pointed needles, but I’ve decided to try knitting a pair of socks using those cursed needles. We’ll see how it goes!

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What’s your favorite thing this week?

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c.b.w. 2014

Favorite Thing Friday: Straight Needle Socks

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Let’s get the knitter confession out of the way: I hate knitting on double-pointed needles. They are pokey and I never know where to put my fingers to work the stitches! I deal with them to make hats, but I’ve never been able to get past my double-pointed needle issues to make socks. Hence, my obsession with the sock loom.

I love my sock loom (and everybody knows it), but there is a severe shortage of sock loom patterns available. Furthermore, it’s tough to translate a sock pattern from one loom to another, (try as I may, it never works out quite right).  For a while now, I’ve been looking for a solution for both the double-pointed needle aversion and sock loom pattern deficiency.

Lo and behold, I found the answer at my favorite bookstore. While perusing the knitting books, I came across Knit Your Socks On Straight by Alice Curtis. This is my new favorite thing!!

Curtis has come up with an ingenious method of knitting socks on only two needles. The trick lies in creating a flat seam along the side of the sock using a simple crochet stitch that mimics a three-needle bind off. Putting the seam on the side means no uncomfortable bump on the top or bottom of the foot!

Fate was truly on my side as the first pattern in the book called for yarn I already had sitting in my yarn basket (2 partially used skeins, no less!). With stars aligning like that,  I put my Christmas gift knitting aside to learn how to knit these socks! Curtis gives fantastic instructions that are clearly enumerated and easy to understand. Better still, visuals accompany each set of instructions so it’s impossible to get lost.

Within a few hours, I had the leg knit and the heel turned:

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My first turned heel on needles!

The only major challenge for me was reversing the flat seam instructions from righty to lefty. While I managed to successfully create the seam, my process needs a little refinement. The stitch isn’t as flat as I’d like. I think I pulled it too tight.

Two days after picking up the book, I had a beautiful pair of straight needle socks. And just in time for the first “chilly” day of fall, (chilly in Arizona means it dropped below 60°).

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My first pair of straight needle socks.

After I get done knitting Christmas gifts, I’ll be jumping right back into this book. There are some gorgeous socks patterns I can’t wait to try!

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What’s your favorite thing this week?

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c.b.w. 2013