21 November 2006

Toe Long

This is what that sock I've been working on looked like this morning:


This is what it looked like a week ago. Now look again at the photo above. Notice anything odd?

When I took it along to Boston on Friday, I forgot to take along a tape measure to monitor my progress and held it up against my hand to eyeball the length. As I was working my way up the leg, I was bothered by what appeared to be a longer foot than I'd anticipated. So at work last night, I pulled out a tape measure and checked. An inch too long.

Now, this is for my nephew, who will turn 12 in January. Although he has always been on the small side for his age, I fully expect that he will shoot up in the next couple years and would eventually be able to wear a longer sock. Because this is meant to be a present for this year, however, giving him socks an inch too long just was not acceptable, so I mulled my options. I figured I could a) frog back to an inch before the gusset increases and work my way back up, b) pick out the toe and rip out to an inch into the foot and then start the toe anew there, or c) throw the whole thing into a dark corner in a fit of frustration and buy him a gift certificate.

Because I really want to be able to give him something handmade for Christmas (and save the gift certificate for his birthday) and because I figured it would mean less work in the end, I went with option b. Once I had finished up the leg and cast off the cuff using the bind off method described by Grumperina here, I picked up stitches one inch after the last toe increases and set to ripping out the toe.

I discovered that the standard method of M1 from bar between the stitches actually creates loops through stitches when it's being ripped out from the bottom up, so every time I encountered one, I had to pull the entire length of the yarn through the loops. I just really hadn't thought about it, but when visualized it makes perfect sense and is due to the twisting of the bar to make the new stitch. It made the whole process rather a bit longer than I'd expected, but it moved along relatively smoothly (the mohair in the yarn did make it a bit stickier than it might have been otherwise, though), and once I got to the picked up stitches it was a simple matter to do a wide band toe. Tonight, I performed a very cosmetic graft on the toe stitches, and I can officially consider it a semi-FO (still have to do one more to make a pair).

A Completely FO


This is the first of two brioche hats I'm making for my brother's stepsons. Brioche because it will keep them nice and toasty in the Maine winter, and Lion Brand Wool Ease because with two preteen boys, machine washability is pretty much an essential requirement.

This hat is for the younger of the two. I thought the olive and brown suited him well, as he's the more likely of the two to continue in the NASCAR, huntin' & four wheelin' tradition of the family (My brother and I get along very well, but I call him Bubba for a reason).

For his older brother, I'm going with blue as the main color and a dark orange heather as contrast. It would be an understatement to say that I am not an orange person, but I thought that this particular shade actually went well with the blue. Besides, this isn't for me. It's for a boy who needs to have his sense of style nurtured. His mother says he could be my child, and I think we're pretty much all expecting that a few years down the road he'll start sorting a few things out and he and Uncle Mel will need to have a little heart-to-heart about being not quite like the other boys. Just a hunch.


Anonymous said...

Hi Mel. Sorry about the sock woes. You're a trooper for working it out.

The hat looks great. I'll need to try that brioche stitch.

Like you, I have a nephew that the family all pretty much expects will turn out like his Uncle Sean. When he was 3 years old, he he met my partner for the first time. Ian reached out, stroked Darren's cheek and said "Mmmm, whiskers! Kinda nice!" There have been other signs since then...

Sheepish Annie said...

Nice knittin' on both the hat and the sock. And doubly nice that Older Brother has Uncle Mel for any heart-to-hearts that might need to happen. So many kids have to walk that path alone!

Anonymous said...

Hmm- NASCAR, Huntn' & 4WDriving. Nanna is definitely visiting Maine :-p~~ i suspect a GreatUncle of my was a "chap". It must irk the Religious Right when this pops up so regularly.