Wednesday, February 15, 2006

What were those things called again?

You know, those little knitting things that you make before you start a new project?

Swatches, right.

And why do you make them?

So that things will fit. Right.

Can you all guess what I didn't do?

Right. I didn't make a swatch.

My bad.

Last night, I tried on my sock. Now don't get ahead of me. The sock isn't finished yet. I am about 7/8 of the way down the foot. The needles looked long enough so that if I shoved my foot into my sock, just to check the fit, nothing would pop off. And I was right. Nothing did pop off. But the sock was just a bit loose. Hmmmm, think I. Let's check what the pattern says. Gauge 10 st per inch on size 3mm needles. I had 3 mm needles, but upon approaching the plain knitting part of my sock with a ruler, what to my wondering eyes did appear? 7 stitches per inch. I guess that the yarn I chose was a llleeeetle bit larger than the recommended yarn,although not by much, and I guess that I am a loose knitter. I also guess that I have learned my lesson. After all, what is a first sock without a few lessons. I will, however, NOT rip it out and knit it smaller. I'll leave that for the rest of you mad knitters. DH pointed out that his feet were larger than mine and he would kindly sacrifice his feet if the sock was going to be too big for me. I thanked him, but I'm not done yet. Wool has this wonderful property of shrinkage. So when sock # 1 is finished, I shall knit my swatch and see what the shrinkage is. Then go on to sock # 2. I have used the shrinkage thing before. My 2 year mittens are a case in point. I knit then out of fat glossy wool that I picked up at a yard sale and then dyed. I purposely used a man's pattern so that they would be large, but they turned out HUGE! About 12 inches from cuff to fingertip. They shrunk really well though, and now I have super warm and wind proof mittens. A definite plus when you walk about in winter as much as I do. So if the shrinkage thing works, I will still have my socks, if not, DH will inherit a pair of socks that were knit with equal parts love and cursing. And there are enough mistakes in them that I thing that they are safe from the gods' wrath.

Next up... purchase some smaller needles and SAMPLE, SAMPLE ,SAMPLE. I guess that you keep getting lessons that you need to learn. And I hope that some day I will learn to sample BEFORE I start a new project with a new material in a new technique. Sigh.

Happy Wednesday all. Gee, that sounds like a reason to celebrate.


Liz said...

come raid my tanya needles

jackie said...


Isn't it time you blogged again? Enquiring minds want to know.

Valerie said... you know some one with thick ankles?
My very favorite template for sizing socks comes from Judy Gibson's pattern for toe up socks. The numbers work whether you start at the toe or the cuff. Check it out at:

jackie said...

The cuff and ankle are fine, it is in the instep that it all goes to cow poo. Hubbie has much larger feet than mine and seeing as they are greens and browns and not hot pink, he will wear them if they do not shrink to fit me. If they shrink too much, my 11 year old has feet that are slightly smaller than mine. They will be worn.

Thanks for the sock pattern tip. I am collecting them like I collect yarn.