Friday, February 16, 2007


I've figured out that part of my knitting slump has been caused by a lack of proper tools. A lot of the yarn I want to work through in the near future is thicker (for me) stuff, mostly worsted weight scraps from other projects. I don't know if it's because I'm knitting more tightly than I used to, pursuing more detailed patterns, or if it's just that I'm getting pickier, but I've found that my blunt, sticky needles aren't what I want to work with anymore. I don't like those icky blunt plastic DPNs in sizes 6 and 7 that I bought for my very first sweater project. The idea of using Clover bamboo circular needles makes my spine crawl, as if someone scratched their fingernails on a chalkboard. I want my knitting to flow, not to be a sticky struggle. And with the tools I own for DK and worsted weight yarn, that's what my knitting would be. So until I can buy some sharper, smoother needles in sizes 5-8, I have no choice but to knit with skinny yarn on skinny needles. (And I'm sure you all know how much of a hardship this is for me. I'm pouting so fiercely it's turned into a huge grin of delight. Imagine that!)

I was thinking of swatching for Eunny's Bayerische Socks, because even though I don't have the yarn for a pair at the moment, I wanted to see if the patterning would work well in Harrisville yarn. (I want to use a sticky 100% wool, to avoid splittiness with those twisted stitches.) But my size 0 needles are flimsy, relatively dull bamboo needles, which I don't think are up to the task of swatching for those socks. Yet again, tool troubles.

I felt like throwing a frustrated tantrum that could put a two year old to shame, when I remembered that I got a copy of Folk Socks for my birthday, and had never really looked through it, as I was very busy with other projects at the time. I borrowed my library's copy of the book a year ago to knit the Mamluke socks, but had never really read through the rest of the book. I still haven't really read through the book properly (I want to sit down and swatch all of those heel and toe techniques), but paging through the patterns, I found something to soothe my troubled, whining soul. And I cast on:

Chalet sock Feb 16

These are the Chalet Socks, knit in Brown Sheep Naturespun Sport (yes, the same stuff I used for Elizabeth I and hat and mitten accents), on some cheap but satisfying aluminum size 1 DPNs, which I've never used before. The yarn is a little splitty, and the needles aren't as sharp as I'd like for this project, but it's working, and I'm enjoying it. I have my eyes on Am Kamin for my next sweater project, and I'm glad I've had a chance to try out this twisted knitting technique, to confirm that I'll enjoy knitting that sweater as much as I enjoy looking at it.

The project is young, but there have been some problems already. I don't see Folk Socks listed on IK's book errata page, which surprises me, as I've already found 2 pattern errors. One is confusing and misleading wording about the ribbing at the top, and another is a stitch cross in the wrong place on the chart, which led me to not doing it the first few repeats of that part of the pattern. It's not a huge deal, and I'm not ripping back to fix it (it's not in a noticeable spot), but I've made note of it so I can do it correctly for the remainder of the project. Does anybody know if there is an errata page for this book elsewhere? Or will someone point out to me that it's actually on that list, and that my ability to read is off frolicking somewhere with my missing patience?

Time for me to get back to my Red Beauty. For those of you wondering, a friend has shared a wonderful bread pudding recipe with me, so I can make the most of my stale challah. Forget turning lemons into lemonade. Right now, I'm all about turning blunt needles into compost and turning stale bread into... bread-ade?



Blogger Beth S. said...

I have yarn stashed for these socks, so it's a little disturbing to hear about the undocumented errors! Thanks for the heads-up.

Your sock is just lovely, by the way. :-)

2/16/2007 10:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Beautiful sock! I have not heard of any errors for that book and haven't had a change to knit anything from it myself. I'll keep an eye out!

2/16/2007 12:03 PM  
Blogger Tora said...

Those twisters are gorgeous! I need to try a little twisting myself soon :-)

Lovely color, by the way!

2/16/2007 12:35 PM  
Blogger gray la gran said...

i'm such a goober ... as i read here, i had to go an pull my copy of folk socks off the shelf and drool over the pattern ;)
regarding errata ... just google it. and if you don't find anything, contact interweave press. they're really easy to access and talk about possible problems and errors in patterns. and if all else fails, go to the source herself, nancy bush. she runs a yarn store in salt lake city called the wooly west.

2/17/2007 7:57 AM  
Blogger Rebecca said...

Thanks for posting about the Chalet socks errata. There is a Folk Socks yahoo group that I started years ago and we haven't encountered any errors in the patterns so far. You are welcome to come join us! There is a link on my blog.

2/17/2007 9:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't know what your preferred needle material is, but apparently the company that makes Addi Turbos is releasing a new line of pointier-tipped needles this spring. Could that be what you're looking for?

2/17/2007 10:04 AM  
Blogger Theresa said...

Two of my favorite projects - I have a pair of the Chalet Socks in red and I just adore them! And Am Kamin, of course!

2/17/2007 12:26 PM  
Blogger Aimee said...

I would check the Wooly West site. That is Nancy Bush's website/yarn business. There might errata there.

2/27/2007 11:36 PM  

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