The boy has socks.

Jerry's New Socks

I am seriously on fire with the socks. To be honest, I have been watching seasons 1-3 of Fringe on my computer (bought the instant videos on Amazon) and that leaves me with a lot of time for knitting that I can put on autopilot.

Do I even need to tell you what pattern I’m using? It is, again, Judy Gibson’s You’re Putting Me On Toe Up Sock pattern. And since I have a certain way that I do all the things in the pattern, I thought I’d give you some more details.

Jerry's New Socks

The Toe

I use a figure-8 cast on for the toe. It’s a little tricky when you first learn it, but it’s also really cool. I learned it first when I knit HelloYarn’s Top Down Bonnet for Maggie way back when (Oh my, that link has a picture of Maggie from 2007! You must click it!).

I’ve refined the way I knit the cast on. Here’s what I do. I loop the yarn around the needles (using two needles). Then I knit across each needle (now I’m using three needles). Most instructions will have you begin the increases on the next round, while also dividing the stitches between four needles. I do those things on separate rounds. First, I knit one round and divide the stitches evenly between four needles (so I am actually using five needles). Then on the next round I begin the increases. I find the work is less fiddly when I do it this way, and that makes me a happier knitter.

For the toe, I use a KFB increase. When the work is so tiny and fiddly at the beginning, the KFB is the easiest for me to handle, and it’s relatively quick. Here’s how I do it:

Needle 1: KFB, k to end of needle.
Needle 2: K to last 2 sts, KFB, K1.
Needle 3: Same as Needle 1.
Needle 4: Same as Needle 2.

The Bind Off

Getting a loose bind off at the top edge of a toe-up sock is crucial. I use the same one every time, and like Grumperina, the first time I used it was on the cast off edge of my Leaf Lace Shawl (again with the old knits! 2007!).  I don’t know what Evelyn Clark calls this bind off, but I’ve seen something called a Russian Bind Off that is very similar.  What I do differently is that I don’t slip stitches back to the left hand needle.

I described the bind off like this in the pattern for my toe up Celery Socks:

K1, *K1, insert L needle tip into the front of the 2 sts from left to right and knit them together from this position.* Repeat between *s until 1 st remains. Cut yarn and fasten off.

It is easy and effective. You need not change to a larger needle, either. If anything, you work this cast off just as tight as any other stitch. It’s naturally Very Stretchy!

Jerry's New Socks

The yarn I used for these socks is Cascade Heritage 150 and I loooooove it. It’s technically sport weight, but it’s on the thin side if you ask me. But the socks are cushy. I went back to the yarn store where I bought the yarn, to buy more, and they didn’t have any. And instead of the yarn being sold out because it was super popular, I think they didn’t restock it because nobody was really crazy about it. Oh, well.

Best part of these socks? Jerry loves them! He’s been wearing them around the house, and that makes this knitter very happy, indeed.

More info about pattern and yarn for these socks on Ravelry.

Since I wasn’t finished with Fringe when I finished these socks, I started another pair. Trekking XXL (one of my favorite sock yarns!) in pumpkiny colors!

Socktober

my Jerry

One night at dinner, I said, “I did not know that.” I was referring to something Gerald had said, the subject of which has long been forgotten.  A few minutes later, in complete context, Maggie said it. “I did not know that.” Coming from a three year old, it was freakin hilarious. We all cracked up. Since then, there has been much discussion of who, in our house, is funny.

Poor Jerry; he often tries to drop in an “I did not know that.” But his timing is always off. It’s really not funny when he says it, ever. I feel bad for him, especially because he feels like if he could just nail this one joke, he’d be the man of the hour.

The thing is, most of what Jerry says is funny. Not usually laugh out loud funny, but seriously, quietly funny. He’s been reading The Guinness Book of World Records. About once a day out of the blue, he’ll tell you the world record for something.  So funny. I wish he wasn’t so concerned about this one particular joke. He’s a funny, funny kid. I love him so much that it sounds silly just saying I love him.

For Christmas, I knew Jerry wanted to buy me yarn (he’s funny and smart). So I filled out the “wish list” cards they had at my LYS and sent Gerald off with the kids one Saturday. On Christmas morning, I got two gorgeous skeins of Cascade 220. One bright blue. One bright orange.  Beautiful. This weekend, I finally got around to making him a hat.

my Jerry

The pattern is Kirsten Kapur’s Wood Hollow Hat. I used a size 5 needle (instead of a 6) and made the ribbing a bit shorter than in the pattern. Jerry is 7, but he’s got quite a noggin. This fits him perfectly.

The yarn, of course, is Cascade 220. The color is…9457, one of The Heathers. It took less than a skein, even with the ginormous pompom.

Wood Hollow

Jerry doesn’t really want the pompom, so he requested it be made removeable. “Like with a tie-clip or something.”

I couldn’t help myself and had to make the pompom anyway, even though I knew he didn’t want it.

my Jerry

my Jerry

That last picture immediately reminded me of another back porch photo shoot we had nearly 3 years ago. My how time flies:

Tasseled Fezmarch 2007

He’s all big now.

my Jerry

And funny as hell.

my Jerry

don’t ask, it’s secret

lambs pride bulky

I love Lamb’s Pride (bulky, in this case, but I love the worsted, too). I remember when I first started knitting, there was always TONS of it around the yarn stores. It’s still there, of course, but so many other yarns jump out at me lately. Plied, sport-weight yarns, for example. But there’s always a place in my stash for this great woolly, mohairy, bulky yarn.

I’m using the stuff above for some **** for ** ****** for *********.

It’s secret Christmas knitting time, so sorry for the *’s.

Here’s another snap of a secret project. It might be clear what it is, but I will offer no details, other than that it is a fun, fun, fun and addicting knit.

secret knitting

The past few years, I haven’t knit many Christmas projects, but this year I’m feeling it. Are you knitting gifts? Who gets ‘em? How do you decide on a pattern for gift knitting? Just curious!

I’m popping in to say hi, but also to give you a heads up. Watch this space over the next few days for a big announcement! Hint: I am feeling the Christmas spirit big time and want to pass it along! (you will benefit even if you don’t celebrate Christmas – I promise!).