Saturday, 28 March 2015

Self Striping Saga

So I cast on a sock:

Sirdar self striping sock yarn

"Knitting is very conducive to thought. It is nice to knit a while, put down the needles, write a while, then take up the sock again." Dorothy Day
And about five minutes after I'd finished that first row, my Mum phoned. I told her what I was doing, and she started to talk, and I discovered that socks used to be quite the thing amongst the womenfolk in our family. I had had no idea. Most of them, she said, could knit a sock in a day: mainly plain blue or grey, on double pointed needles, moving like quicksilver. But one thing she told me has stayed in my mind as my sock moves along. When a Great Aunt had nothing else left to do, my Mum said, she would rip out the sock she had just finished and knit it all over again. That's a sobering thought. 

So I shall head towards the turning of my first heel with determination. And gratitude that I have more wool, many more projects in mind..and stripes. Stripes are very, very good.

Sirdar Heart n Sole sock wool

My wool is Sirdar Heart & Sole 4ply in Pigeon Toes. When I was ordering it I also picked up Sirdar pattern 7317: knit and crochet scarves and gloves especially for the stripey wool. I thought it might be interesting to road test. I'll be sure to let you know when I get there. Has anyone tried it?

Now, back to the heel. I can't avoid it forever...

27 comments:

helena said...

looking lovely - your Mum's tale of your Great Aunt puts my bored idle hands feeling into context as I look at all the supplies I have waiting to be used and acknowledge I have a 1st world problem

JO SOWERBY said...

I knitted a few pairs of socks and found the heels weren't too bad x there are alot of videos on youtube to help with all the toing and froing you need to do. I love your wool colours, very soft looking wool too. I usually knit on 4 mini double ended needles my only problem being that I do tend to get that annoying gaping bit on at least one of the edges. But I don't mind, it shows I put extra love into them
Jo xxxx

Jennifer Shaw said...

Oh your sock is looking amazing. I can't imagine ripping one back for the fun of knitting it all over again. They are so much work. I had a co-worker from India once tell me that when she was young and wool was not that available, they would rip back something they had worn for a year to knit it into something different for the new season. I thought that was interesting. Have fun turning the heel. It's like magic. You look at it and think, "How did I just do that?"

Ladkyis said...

I remember wearing socks that my grandmother knitted for me. Goodness me they were painful! Now this could have been the fact that they were wool and I have allergy problems but I distinctly remember feeling like I was walking on gravel in bare feet every time I wore them. They took a long time to wear out too

iwillbloom said...

Oh, Sian....I adore your post! So many wonderful snippets and thoughts. Just wonderful (as all great 'Sian' posts are!). Indeed it's a sobering thought that your Aunt would unwind and start again, for want of something else to do: has left me quite 'gob smacked' (for want of a better word!)....

Who knew you could buy self-striping wool?! [I saw your first picture and thought 'my goodness, Sian *is* patient, tying all those knots ;)]....and what a *great* name for the colour of the wool you're using - 'pigeon toes' - you wouldn't imagine it would describe an attractive colour but it does *and* it makes you realise that, actually, pigeon toes (of the none manky kind) are really prettily coloured!

Beautiful photos, too: I assume they're taken on your new 'big' camera?! [Would love to know more about that!]

iwillbloom said...

P.S. Gggrrrr....silly spelling changing thingy....obviously I meant 'non-manky' kind.....

Lea Lacoste said...

yay so cool!!! the yarn is awesome <3. Need to cast on a new pair too ;)

Louise said...

great colour! great story x

Maggie said...

I love the story about your Great Aunt. It's amazing how the striped wool works. Nice colours.

Karen said...

I can't imagine trying to knit a sock, and tearing one out to do over for something to do is beyond belief! But I must say, I do love the stripes you're knitting. Wonderful spring colors!

Jane said...

I need to get the right needles and some pretty wool then I will have a go, I love your wool.

scrappyjacky said...

Looking good.

Fiona@Staring at the Sea said...

It's looking good. Hope that heel didn't prove too taxing. Ripping it back, just to knit it again? Imagine that.

Ruth said...

My grandmother used to knit socks (we found a half-finished pair on a round needle after she died), but I have no memory of any that she might have finished. Maybe she knitted them for my Grandad and stopped after he died? I'm still loving the look of self-striping wool!

debs14 said...

Hope the heel went well! Such clever wool, and a fun project to do. Who knew that knitting socks could be hereditary!

Susan said...

Aaah, the turning of the heel - such a magical thing. Good luck. You seem to be an experienced knitter so I'm sure it'll go fine for you. The yarn you're using looks lovely.

Lizzy Hill said...

I lived with my Grandmother for 3 years, I remember her knitting socks, then when they wore out darning them. I also remember her knitting FIVE PLY JUMPERS for my Uncle. No wonder knitting makes me shudder...... but your sock is looking good. LOVE the wool!

Maggie said...

I showed this blog to my mum who used to do a lot of knitting. We were curious as to how the stripe changes so neatly from one colour to the next. I presume the pattern is specific to the wool but how does it allow for different sizes and variables in tension?

stephanie said...

Gorgeous. I still haven't braved knitting but desperate to try

Sheena said...

Your sock is really coming along.
My Mum knitted me socks with toes in many moons ago!!

Jo said...

That is looking really good and once you've turned the heel you'll wonder what the fuss was about :)

Sian said...

Maggie: I’m going to experiment to find out after I’ve finished the socks. It is designed for socks and gloves, so the lengths of each colour are quite short to give broad stripes. I guess if you tried to knit a jumper with it, a length of one colour would only reach across one row and so you’d get very narrow stripes, I’m guessing. It does just suddenly change from one colour to the next, so on the other side of my sock you can see a yellow stitch beside a blue stitch, for example. Knitting just one more strip is addictive..

Barbara Eads said...

I have never knitted socks, but yours look great! That striped pattern will go with many colors. Can't wait to see you model them for us!

KraftyKaren said...

Good luck with the heels, I love that wool and would love it if they made something suitable for bigger garments

alexa said...

That looks like a lovely wool - such soft colours. Gosh, ripping out and starting again just because? The womenfolk in your family are made of stern stuff!

Gail said...

They are looking lovely! I love the colours. I might have to look for some of that yarn around here and get out the needles once my jacket is done.

Rachel B said...

Oh my goodness. I don't think I could pull it apart and do it again.

It's looking great Sian! :)

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