Monday, 11 January 2016

Testing Dilly Dally

Before Christmas I bought some sock yarn on a whim. Whilst I'd already started to make a pair but got stuck at the heel, I was full of optimism that one day I'll conquer socks.

I started to look for a basic book in the shops and on the internet. Then I came across a blog post by Crafternoon Treats, Knitting Socks, and decided that perhaps a small circular needle might suit me, given that I've already given up on double pointed needles (DPNs) and a long circular one. None of our local shops sell these but I found a 30cm HiyaHiya needle at Amazon.

I followed a link from Crafternoon Treats to a post at Winwick Mum (Christine Perry) aimed at beginners like me and found that there is an accompanying book, Super Socks: Knit a Pair of Socks with Winwick Mum. Excellent, just what I was looking for.

So I sent a request to Santa and he delivered on Christmas Day. Armed with my book and a small circular needle I decided to test the different parts of a sock before using the Heart & Sole yarn to make my first pair.

After casting on I did a few rows of ribbing, quite badly, and then I launched straight into the heel flap and turned the heel. It worked first time, I couldn't believe it. Then I got really confused as to how to begin shaping the gusset and eventually the fog cleared. My picked up stitches were a little tight, I think, so I'll have to be more conscious of this bit when I'm making a 'real' sock.

My K2tog side looked so neat, I was really pleased with it. However, the SSK side looked terrible, not helped by the fact that I purled two stitches together in one round (I've absolutely no idea why) and then tried another stitch in a couple of other rounds to see if it looked any better than my loose SSK stitches. I went back to using the latter and they seemed to get better as the rounds went on.

Once I'd finished the gusset I did a few more rounds before moving on to trying out the toe section, which necessitated switching from the small circular needle to the dreaded DPNs.

Surprisingly it's easier to work with them once you've already got some knitting behind you and I eventually found that I could work with two needles in the shape of an upside down V, leaving the other two needles dangling in mid air.

I must admit though that before I could finish the toe section I had to watch an online video in order to fully understand the Kitchener stitch.

Once I'd gone through all the steps in making a sock I tried a bit of cable cast on and ribbing to see if it was any better than my original effort and was pleased to see that Christine's way of doing this is much neater and tighter than mine.

So having walked through the steps in making a sock I should be able to create a whole pair at last. Onwards and Upwards...


  1. Oh I like to hear stories like this! Making a pair of socks is one of my crafting 'Holy Grail' projects, so I like to see people succeed. Best of luck with the 'real' pair!

    1. Thank you, I'm finding that the only way to succeed in knitting is to learn how to undo work when I go wrong, which happens frequently. There have been many cries of 'oh noooooo' in recent days but given that crocheted socks don't look like socks I'm not going to give up until I've made a pair of knitted ones.