Monday, May 09, 2011

Simple

Perfectly simple (not!)

I don't often knit socks from other knitters patterns—but when I do, its because I like the simple (not so simple!) details that go into them. Like Ribbing that is variable in the cuff, but works perfectly into the pattern that follows.

So, for my denim socks, I want some simple details. Like mock belt loops on the top edge (there might be a mock rope belt (I-cord) to go through the belt loops). Simple really; but I messed up twice before getting them right (that's what I get for A: not thinking about the details, B: working late at night.)

The loops are not divided perfectly evenly—just almost-- (issue 1) and the first set would have been fine—if I knit on DPN's.(obviously I still THINK sock knitting as if I do!)

I wanted 5 loops (over 60 stitches--perfect! 1 loop every 12 stitches). But, but, that really didn't get it right.
I wanted 1 loop at the center back , and the front loops to have a slightly wider gap at center front.
Added to the mix, I don't start my socks Center back (as most patterns for DPN's do)—instead my Stitch 1 is “the first stitch on needle 4”.

Let me make sense of that. MOST top down patterns are worked on sets of 4 or 5 needles. My sock designs are always worked as if I were using a set of 5.

MOST sock pattern have the Beginning of Round center back . So Needle 1 is back, needles 2 and 3 are front, and needle 4 is back. Stitch 1 of needle 1 is begnning of the round.

But I set up my socks with the Beginning of the Round on the side. Needle 1 (of 2) holds the back stitches (needle 4 and needle 1 stitches)

Needle 2 (of 2) hold the front stitches.

This way the heel (what ever heel I do) is worked on all the stitches on Needle 1. I usually mark the center point of the stitches (on each needle) so with 60 stitches, I place a marker between stitch 15 and 16. I refer to the marker when turning the heel.

So in setting up the cast on and knitting the belt loops, I had to remember: back first, (and where is the first loop? Well I wanted the center back to have a loop so, counting back 12, (from 15, and the loop needed to come at stitch 3 (or to be precises, after stitch 3).

The belt loops are simple; cast on, and then knit back, to make cast off “tails” (they will get caught into the knitting an inch down, and become loops) So I needed a single yarn cast on. I used the russian style double knot cast on.

The white stitch marker marks center front, the marked loop, center back, the blue marker, the 'side seam” (half way point)

Simple really—but it took me three tries to get to here! I am only showing 1 sock, but both have been cast on. As I join them into rounds, I will knit them into position, with the back half of both socks on one needle, and the front half of both socks on the other needle.
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