Sunday, 17 February 2008

More accurate than a fortune fish

Ever since I was a child, my favourite Christmas cracker novelty has been the Fortune Fish. For the unenlightened, a fortune fish is a thin, red plastic fish that when you place it on the palm of your hand, reacts to the heat by curling and writhing in a range of manners. Enclosed with the fish is a small paper which tells your fortune based on the way the fish moves. Quite uncanny...

Now I can't offer a fortune fish with this cracker of a blog post but I can offer my psychic socks!

Here is the now familiar trio of socks, one plain, one gently patterned and one a little bit tricky. As you can see by this week's progress there has been some change in my overall level of liveliness during my commute. The dominant state, unfortunately has remained one of moderate lethargy with the first of the mildly challenging Undulating Rib socks quite finished but look! The tricky yellow Sock for Veronik has stormed into second place leaving the unchallenging Pretty in Pink socks to plod along in Veronik's yarn overed and purl three togethered wake! I am clearly having more periods of lucidity than hithertoo.

And just in case anyone was thinking that this triple sock madness was a sure fire precondition for a nasty case of Second Sock Syndrome, worry not, I have already cast on more moderate lethargy for next week...

Yesterday I taught the second of three sets of sock knitting classes at IKnit. This was the big one, the heel turn, so there wasn't quite so much banter and a lot more serious knitting this time as there is a lot to go through. As usual, everyone impressed me with their skills, tenacity and determination to improve their knitting. Next week's session will be much more relaxed.

I also think it is essential for me to keep learning if I am to improve as a teacher so I have been spending some of my evenings teaching myself a few new tricks...

First we have a top down sock on two circular needles:

I'm making this sock using Mountain Colors Bearfoot in a colourway that I can't remember as it's been wound in my stash for ages. Can't think why as it makes the softest, haziest socks because of the small amount of mohair. Really must do more rummaging in the stash... I'm not sure how I feel about the two circulars method. It's better than dpns for avoiding dropped stitches in transit but seems a bit more time consuming with all the pulling on cables and repositioning of ends. I'm using Addi Lace needles for the first time though and really like their pointy tips and slightly less slick surface.

In further pursuit of enlightenment I also cast on these...

More top down socks in Cherry Tree Hill, again of unknown colourway, done using Magic Loop on Knitpicks Options 2.25mm. I think I like this method better than the two circulars although the heel turn felt a bit awkward at times. I also discovered that I must knit more tightly in this method than on dpns as the fabric is definitely snugger. Again, it feels a slower method of sock knitting than dpns with all the repositioning but it might be just a question of practice. I will definitely be using this method instead of 40cm circulars for jumper sleeves as I find the longer points much more comfortable.

And just in case you thought I had done far too much learning for one week look at this...

Time for a lie down - I feel the return of moderate lethargy. Now where did I put that sock...

15 comments:

Nikki said...

oh my. How odd. In the past couple days of not knitting, I've decided it's high time I learn socks on circs. I hadn't picked out two circs or the magic loop yet. Maybe I'll just get three sets of needles and give them all a go...

I'm interested in seeing how you like them

Nikki said...

oh forgot to add Way to go on the crochet too!! You can do it!

kaet said...

I like how your current socks are in complementary warm colours (except the blue one, hm).

And what a pretty crochet hook! Are you making something specific with it, or just practising?

Sussex Yorkie said...

I too like trying new things and got the crochet book out this weekend, didn't do anything other than look though. Need to take a leaf out of your book me thinks.

kathryn said...

Magic Loop is my favourite method. In fact it's the only wqy I do it now! I usually use 80 cm Addi turbos but I agree about the extra pointiness of the Options.

And I'm wondering what you're crocheting too...

picperfic said...

and I know there is even more on your needles than you are telling us ;^) Just how many needles do you have?

Queen of the froggers said...

Your socks are looking good. I love magic loop, I use it for everything I can! The heel turn gets so much easier with practice, and faster.

daisie said...

Fortune telling fish were always a popular item in my daughers' stockings. So much so that in recent years I have been looking out for them and putting them in with their presents again. My partner Mike was unfamilar with these little creatures (he is Scandinavian) and was referring to them as Truth-Telling Fish. I love that idea!
Very nice socks! and an inspiring message: time to delve into the stash and learn some new techniques. Sometime soon I would like to try continental knitting.

Mandella said...

The fortune fish and the mood ring. Memories of a 1970s childhood.

No matter how many times I try other methods I always end up back with my trusty DPNs. Good job too. I have needle amnesia and before Ravelry and the needle record seemed to acquire an indecent number of sets in each common size.

K. said...

It is really silly, but I am nearly afraid to try circulars for socks. I should just buck up and give it a try. I might like it. All those socks going at once is really inspiring!

Adrienne said...

WOW! your socks look fanatastic!

sandra said...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't one of your trio written as a toe up sock? And how do I get hold of the Socks for Veronik pattern as the magazine has now sold out of copies?

LittleBerry said...

Thank you for the award btw... I love your socks, I always have 2 pairs on the go - 1 circs & 1 dpn's but they're always plain knitting... but you're right you need different things to knit for different moods and times of knitting....

Looking forward to what the crocheting will be....

Squiblet said...

Your socks are inspiring, I've been thinking about trying magic loop too, especially as they are more conducive when knitting on the move. But I do like dpns.
Wish I lived close enough to come to iknit for knitting lessons - sigh.

Mrs J said...

Good socks! I have tried the magic loop but there is too much pushing & pulling along the cable for my liking. The real 'magic' in my humble opinion is the workings of four or five little 5" Brittany Birch needles!
Now about that crochet hook?!!!!!