WIP WEDNESDAY: I will call them…Cumbersocks

A while back, Gentleman Caller surprised me with two skeins of Purple Shirt sock yarn from Pandia’s Jewels to celebrate being permanently placed at my former job.  (Really, getting those two skeins of yarn was the only good part of said job, BUT I DIGRESS.)  It’s been hanging out in my stash, waiting for the right project.  Since we had the mother of all winters here in Boston, I decided to knit myself some socks…and only got around to knitting up the Sherlock yarn once the weather got nicer.  Whoops.



My initial plan was to make the Mirror socks by Josiah Bain.  As you can tell, the yarn was a little too busy for that pattern, and even with the aid of a row counter I lost track of where I was in the pattern.  I went on Ravelry and looked for a free pattern for a pair of toe-up socks in a similar gauge.  One of the first hits was “I Shall Name Them George”, and after skimming the pattern decided to just dive in.


The smocked pattern and short-row heel are pretty similar to my previous pair of socks, but since these pull in a little more I’ve had to knit them extra long and try them on as I go.  I cast on last Wednesday and FINALLY got the right length last night.  The heel is almost entirely turned, and I should be able to start the cuff on the train ride home tonight.  After working this section, I’m almost excited to cast on for the next sock, since I know how long it should be and where to start turning for the heel.  (Possibly while listening to Molly Lambert’s guest appearances on the “Yo, Is This Racist” podcast, which I learned about as I left for work this morning, thanks guys for letting me know this now.)




I’m calling this a cheat because I actually finished the socks in question on my way into work today.


These are Sarah Wilson‘s Honeycomb Socks, a free pattern I got from Ravelry.  I love Sarah’s retro details and body-con silhouette, but until I saw this pattern I never thought to make a pair of socks.  Clearly I was missing out.  The pattern was relatively easy (more on that in a minute) and has a great texture but also allows the yarn to shine.


This is kind of embarrassing to admit, but sometimes when I’m knitting seed stitch (which this pattern resembles), I lose my place and knit two stitches in a row, rendering my work into single rib.  I made a mistake in a few rows of slipping two stitches in a row, but those were so tiny that I couldn’t pick it up on my camera.

And now, a few words about the yarn.  I knit this from Wandering Wool, a DC-area hand-dyed company whose yarn I bought at Loop DC when I went to our nation’s capitol in January.  The colorway was called Strawberries and Cream, but seeing all that crimson and white in skein form made my brain go in a different direction.

By the way, I'm writing this on my lunch break from work.  You'll just have to use your imagination.

By the way, I’m writing this on my lunch break from work. You’ll just have to use your imagination.

I kept thinking of these as the yarn dyed from blood and BRAAAAAAAINS, knit with spare bones, to celebrate the end of the zombie apocalypse.

Next on the needles: Mirror by Josiah Bain, who will be pleased to learn that I’m knitting this from yarn inspired by Sherlock’s purple shirt.

FO FRIDAY: Lipstick Traces

I finished the Lipstick Traces socks last week, and I first wore them out of the house on Tuesday.  They are comfortable and look cute…in fact, they match my Rosie the Riveter romper.


Apart from knitting them toe up, the only other modification I made was to ditch the row of red above the ribbing.


Knit from Cascade Heritage yarn in gray and Plymouth Happy Feet in red.  Raveled.

WIP WEDNESDAY: ‘Vog On, preparing to turn the heel of

When Windsor Button had their liquidation sale a few years ago, I bought two skeins of Plymouth Happy Feet in the Reds colorway.  My intention was to use that as the accent color in what would become my Lipstick Traces socks.  Either I overestimated the amount of yarn I needed or I figured I’d stock up — since the yarns were at that point 40% off — and when I finally finished those socks, I found myself with enough yarn for another pair.

2008-01-01 00.00.00-11

Since I had three-quarters of a skein on me and a size 0 needle, why not just cast on as soon as I bound off the previous pair?  Why not, indeed.  I’m knitting these from Knitty’s Vog On pattern.  I started these on Monday night and already I’m almost up to the heel.

Fun fact: Vog On was the first pair of socks I knit for myself.  I’d made several pairs of socks for Gentleman Caller, but since I wore a lot of skirts I didn’t see the point of making socks I could wear.  Now that I’m wearing a lot of pants, knitting myself some nice pairs of socks has become a priority for me.  Plus, they’re portable and easy (ish) to knit while sitting in meetings or doctor’s appointments.

WIP WEDNESDAY: Lipstick traces

For my AmeriCorps chapter, this week is “Spirit Week” — a five-day period of reconnecting with our cohort for revelry and event planning.  I knew I’d be spending long periods in lectures and small group meetings, and that I’d find many of the activities stressful and frustrating.  Knowing that I’d need a cognitive anchor to help me stay sane, I packed some sock yarn that I’d stashed a few years ago and set to work on Ann Weaver’s New Boots and Contracts sock pattern.

"What are these socks doing here?"  "I'll tell you later."

“What are these socks doing here?” “I’ll tell you later.”

I’d stashed for this a while ago.  Given the yarn colors I’d chosen and the pattern’s connection to The Clash, I assumed these socks would carry me through revisions on my novel.  (The protagonist, Sally Darling, wears a lot of red and gray, and her favorite album is London Calling.)  Instead, I held off until another high-activity period.

The slipper fits!

The slipper fits!

I converted these into a toe-up pattern on the fly and made a short-row heel flap and gussets.  With the decreases, I only worked the slipped-stitch pattern on the front while working the gusset.  While I like to check how my garments fit as I’m making them, I also hate how my Kitchner stitches look and feel.  I’m pretty happy with how these turned out.

Ankle vent.

Ankle vent.

I love how the contrasting color looks like lipstick swatches in those rows.  These are going to keep me warm and look cute this winter!