Can We Talk?

A few years ago, when I hosted my blog on the now-defunct dotMac/MobileMe site, I wrote a post explaining that I have a tendency to cuss. A lot. I know that some people think that cussing is an indication of a limited vocabulary, but I disagree. I have a very large vocabulary that just happens to include a plethora of cuss words.

Cussing doesn’t offend me under most circumstances, but I know it offends a lot of people, and because I want to share my knitting with any and every interested knitter, I avoid using words that some people might find objectionable, offensive, or off-putting. But that doesn’t mean that my knitting (and spinning) isn’t often accompanied by a whole heap of cuss words.

Some kinds of knitting are just conducive to f-bombs and other obscenities, for example, knitting socks from the toe up. Some sock knitters love knitting socks toe up and think it’s really the only sensible way to knit a sock. They are wrong, of course, but I believe in live and let live. 😉 There are circumstances under which knitting socks toe up is the better choice, but unless the situation dictates toe-up knitting, I knit socks cuff down. So I’m sitting here not a little confused as to why I decided to knit my Vanilla Candy Corn Socks from the toe up. My intention from the start was to knit a plain vanilla sock, with maybe some ribbing on the instep as well as on the cuff, so I’m baffled as to why I started sock #1 at the toe. I have no explanation. I just don’t know.

Vanilla Candy Corn Socks sock #1

But I do know one thing. Had I started this sock with the cuff, it would be finished right now. Instead, I still have 2 or 3 inches left to work on the leg and cuff because I had to knit and reknit the <insert your favorite expletive> heel a total of five times. That’s not a typo. I knitted the freaking heel five times. Five. Times. And trust me, the cuss words flew each time. Lots and lots of cuss words. Lots.

The first time, after I had completed the heel,  I then tried the sock on. The foot was too long. The biggest difficulty I have with toe-up socks is knowing when to start the heel. I’ve tried all the tricks of the trade, but I still have a hard time getting it right. No biggie. It’s just a heel. I ripped the heel out, ripped back a few rounds of the foot, and knit the heel again. I tried it on and guess what. No, the foot wasn’t too short this time, it was still too long. Rip, rip, rip. Knit, knit, knit. This time the length was fine, but I messed up the short rows. Rip again, knit again, but this time my stitch count was off. I had dropped a stitch. Rip again, knit again, and I finally got it right.

Short row heel finally made the Goldilocks zone.

Because I didn’t want to disrupt the striping of the yarn, when I got to the heel, I dropped the working yarn and attached yarn from the other end of the ball to knit the heel. That way, when I started knitting the cuff, the pattern of the yarn colors continued to flow as though they were never interrupted by a heel. Because they weren’t. 😀 The ugly loose stitched circled in black is where I dropped the yarn for the heel and picked up the working yarn again. Once I weave in the end, that loop will disappear.

The cuff of the sock is just good old garter rib, which is one of my very favorite stitches to use for socks. It’s simple, works with almost any yarn, and fits really well because it is very stretchy. You just alternate rounds of 2 x 2 rib with rounds of plain stocking stitch. But don’t do it with Kollage square dpns. They are just awful to work with. I hate them. Hate. Them. Note to self: buy some Chiao Goo sock needles in 2.25mm.