[Since we are still putting stuff away here in the new Chez Zarzuela and it isn't quite ready for "prime time" allow me to distract you with a post about the heel of my latest socks.]
My first pair of socks for the Summer of Socks was actually finished last Thursday night but I have one more thing to tell you about them before they make their FO debut on the blog. I decided when I came up with the Summer sockalong idea that I wanted to use this time as a chance to try new things. One of those things was some of the patterns from “Sensational Knitted Socks” by Charlene Schurch. I’m sure you are probably familiar with the book at this point since so many other bloggers have talked about it. Since I was using a self striping yarn I picked a chevron pattern and my new technique was to be the “In-Place Afterthought or Forethought Heel”. Looked simple enough. I figured why not.
Well. Can I just say that this particular heel will not be gracing my socks again? There. Said it. The results are nice but the process is so fidely and just a pain in the ass that I just don’t think I could knit this heel a third or fourth time. Without telling you all the instructions and thereby encouraging the copyright police to come knocking on my door (heh…if they could find me!) this heel involves knitting the cuff, casting on stitches provisionally, knitting those stitches in the round along with one half of the sock stitches while the other half rests, and then using kitchener stitch to join the two sides of the heel together.
First problem: this book is written for either dpns or two circs. I prefer to use magic loop and one circ which means that at some point the resting stitches need to go on to waste yarn themselves in order for you to be able to knit the other half of the cuff stitches. Result: PITA.
Second problem: Using this technique means you have to take the yarn out of the other end of the ball in order to match the stripes. What the book doesn’t say however, is that in order for the stripes to truly match, you not only have to find the right point in the repeat, but you have to make sure that you are using it from the proper direction or you’ll essentially be doing it backwards. For example, if you stripes are being knitted red, black, pink, purple and you find that area of the repeat from the other end of the ball and don’t wind it up to use it in reverse order, your stripes will come out purple, pink, black, red. Result: PITA.
Third problem: Using this technique means that you will have more ends to weave in since you have to go use another part of the skein. This also means that if you don’t have enough yarn, you may run out because of all the cutting. Result: Double PITA.
After all this messing around you end up with something that has about eleventy billion ends hanging out whilst you try and knit and not start using the wrong part of the yarn. It looks something like this:
Yikes I say. And in the final result, I really don’t find it all that comfortable. It’s much better now that I am properly executing the kitchener stitch, but I don’t find that it leaves enough depth in that area of my foot to be extremely comfortable. To me, it isn’t worth all the fuss. So in the end, I have learned something new and I am happy for that. But I don’t think I’ll be using it again. So what does it look like in the finished product? Next time my friends!
P.S. Hope you all of my U.S. readers have a very happy and safe 4th of July!
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