Thursday, September 30, 2010

Knitted Socks for me...

 I love hand knit socks... 

I have knit several pairs and consider myself pretty adept at the whole knitting from the cuff down, turning the heel, and decreasing for the toe.

My sock world has just turned upside down. Literally.

I made a pair of socks from this book, and it's changed my life.

Here's the story.

In August I spent a lovely week at GGFI. That's the Golden Gate Fiber Institute. Magic. Amazing. Inspiring. If you are into fiber, this is your dream vacation. GGFI is the brainchild of Morgaine Wilder of Carolina Homespun and Judith McKenzie McCuin fiber guru. I can't wait to go back next year.

One of the things I did that week was spend 3 hours every afternoon learning about socks from this sprite of a woman.

That's Cat Bordhi

Her superpower is to comprehend the very essence of knitting structure and to bring others along for the ride. This class was all about making socks that fit your personal footprint and in the process I learned how to knit.

Sure, I've been knitting for years. I've made sweaters, hats, slippers, an Ipod cover. Painstakingly following patterns. Never straying from the formula. That was knitting. This class taught me KNITTING.

We started by tracing our feet.

That's Cat's footprint.

Then you cast on 6 stitches using Judy's Magic cast on, toe up. Increase to 12 stitches and knit one plain round. Then we followed this pattern:

Then you try it on. And check the fit. And knit. And try it on and check the fit. And knit. Increase on the sole when you feel like you need more room. Add a stitch pattern if you want.

You record it all on your footprint.

I learned to knit intuitively. How to anticipate where I needed to increase to get a perfect fit. I did not follow a step-by-step pattern. Your foot is your pattern.

Finished. And they fit perfectly.  You can see the second pair that I started over to the left.

Here they are center stage. They'll have a contrasting toe, heel and cuff. I am using a simple knit 2 together/yarn over (K2TogYO) pattern every 6th row to make it interesting. The variegated yarn is Claudia Hand Painted, from our goodie bags and Louet Gems in Fingering Weight, Sandlewood colorway, from Cat.

If you are a sock knitter I would bet this book will change your life. It did mine.