Mid Sock Syndrome?

You know, it’s funny. I don’t tend to be struck down with Second Sock Syndrome. I don’t always cast on a second sock the instant I’ve finished the first if I’ve got other projects on the go that I want to work on before I go back to the sock knitting. But by and large, my second socks seem to knit up faster than the first ones… probably because I already have the pattern fixed in my head. Halfway through my Whitby sockWhat I do get, though, is ‘Mid Sock Syndrome’. Is it just me? I start a new sock (so far I’ve only knit top-down, so I can only talk about that) and the ribbing, if there is any, might feel relatively slow, but once I get onto the main part of the leg: zoom! Before I know it, I’m at the heel flap. At that point, time grinds to a halt or something. What’s really weird here is, the various parts of heel flap, heel turn and even gusset decreases don’t seem to take all that long. But somehow, all together, they take an age. And then there’s the foot. For some reason this didn’t happen for the Monkey socks – the foot of those flew by – but in general, the foot takes for EVAH. Which makes no sense, because my feet are small and therefore the foot part of a sock is much shorter than the leg.

Perhaps it’s that I’ve gone past the point of being interested in the pattern because it’s new, and also past the gratification of having learned it, so it starts knitting up faster. Is it sock fatigue? I seem to constantly be checking the foot length to make sure I haven’t gone too far, and seeming to still have miles before the toe decreases start. Don’t get me wrong, I still love the sock knitting. But I suppose by the time I get to that part, I just want the flipping thing to be finished! I guess I’ll just have to be grateful that starting that second sock makes it all new and exciting again…. :-)

The elephant sneezed and fell on his knees, but what became of the monkey monkey monkey monkey…

I’m listening to / watching the Last Night of the Proms at the mo. Ah, Last Night, I luff you! One of these days I’ll actually go in person. I’ve actually been a completely rubbish Prommer this year and not been to a single one. I was just too broke to get up to London. Next year! I’m determined. I’ve enjoyed listening on the radio and catching the odd one on telly, but it’s not the same as being in the Hall yourself. I’ve loved the Albert Hall since I first sung there when I was 10. There’s just no atmosphere like it for me. It’s my all time favourite concert hall in the world, no contest. Even the Sydney Opera House, fabulous as it is, just doesn’t have the same emotional attachments I guess. So yes. Go the Proms!

*break while I sing along to Jerusalem*

But what I was originally going to post about was my Monkey socks. I finished them! I like them lots. They’re all comfy too. I’m gradually getting faster at the knitting of socks – I spose it’s more that I’m picking the sock up to knit it more often rather than physically knitting them faster.

Did I mention that the foot was way faster than the leg? I think I did. I ended up with quite a lot of yarn left over – maybe even a third of a ball. Anyway, here they are:

Wearing my Monkeys (larger version in the photo album)

Continue reading “The elephant sneezed and fell on his knees, but what became of the monkey monkey monkey monkey…”

The monkey fell out of his bunk and slid down the elephant’s trunk

I’ve been whizzing through the foot of my second Monkey sock – yay! I am of course in no way inspired by the fact that I need those 2.5mm DPNs for another project I want to start. Oh no. Hah! (I need another set of 2.5s, is what I need. Ooo, or maybe a circular needle in that size, just for variety.)

But anyway, the foot of these socks goes so much faster than the leg! Quite possibly as much as twice as fast, in fact. Not that the leg was slow going, mind you. But the foot, remember, only has the pattern repeats on two needles, and the other two are nice speedy plain stocking stitch. The twice as fast thing is suddenly making sense! Plus, with my short little size 4, I only do five pattern repeats on the foot including the gusset decrease section. Which is one less than the leg to start with.

The outcome of all this is, I’ve now finished the lace repeats (yay), and all I have to do is the toe decreases and kitchener stitch the toe up. I like kitchener stitch. It’s all neat and invisible and …. weave-y. Oh look, my vocab has turned in for the night!

So I’m going to finish these socks off tonight while listening to podcasts before I go to sleep. Hoorah! I’m strongly tempted to take myself to the shop at the bottom of my road that sells all sorts of fascinating shop fittings and models, tomorrow. Because I want a head (please mentally pronounce that “hiid”) and a foot (“fuut”) or two for the displaying of my hats and socks. I know I have Angelique-the-toy-head (named by Ally manymany years ago), but she’s, well, technically a toy. And not life sized, which makes her not quite right for displaying hats. I’m not sure if I’d be better off getting a foot (or pair of feet), or some of those lovely wooden sock blockers – plastic ones are OK, but if you’re going to get some, you might as well get some dead spiffy ones, no? Shop model feet have the advantage of being properly foot-shaped, but sock blockers are easier to store. It’s a conundrum! Anyone have any advice?

The big baboon by the light of the moon was combing his auburn hair

First Monkey sock up to the heel flap (click for a larger version)I’ve been beavering away at my Monkey socks, one repeat at a time, usually while listening to podcasts. One of the nice things about this pattern is that the lace repeats are logical, and so very easily memorised. But you know, I don’t think I made a proper ‘project info’ entry for this project. So:
Pattern: Monkey socks, from Knitty (Winter 06).
Yarn: Opal Rodeo #1170.
Needles: Set of five 2.5mm DPNs.

The first pic here is of the first one of the pair, either at the end, or almost at the end of the heel flap. The stitch marker in the middle is where the cast-on row began. I haven’t bothered with that for the second sock.

One and a bit Monkey socks (click for a larger version)And here’s a pic of the completed first sock and the just cast-on second sock. There’s actually a lot more of it now – I’ve just finished the lace repeats for the leg and done the two set-up rows for the heel flap, so when I’ve finished writing this post, I’m off to go and listen to podcasts and get that heel flap done.

One of these days, I’m going to sit down and knit a pair of socks from start to finish, without working on other projects at the same time. Or, without swapping between those projects all the time. I’ve been trying to use Lixie’s Stashtimator, but I have no idea how long it really takes me to knit a pair of socks. Still, I have a ton more stash to count before I can get to my final figure anyway. Urk. I can tell you, though, that I have *wince* 6.1 miles just of sock yarn. Ouch. And that’s not counting leftovers. I’m realising that “too much stash” is a very subjective thing, because I’ve seen people who think they have a large stash when they only really have a couple of shoeboxes full. How do they do that? I don’t think I’ve had a stash that small since about two weeks after I started knitting! I’ve really got to go on a yarn diet / stashalong, haven’t I?

The birds and the beasts were there

Still no pictures (must get around to that by the end of the week), but I’ve cast on my second Monkey sock. Which means that, yes, BP is done. Um, almost. Alright, I’ve sewn on the second sleeve, and done the edging (which was a billionty stitches). All that actually needs doing now is for me to sew in the final two ends (on said edging), wash and block it, and sew the button on. Hoorah! Maybe tomorrow, then. Oh, and I was going to sew a little label in it, too. Must find those.
Other than that, I have (oops) totally fallen off the yarn wagon. I know, I’m bad. But I haven’t bought anything that I don’t have a project in mind for. In fact, I’ve bought sock yarn. So, more socks! Socks are good. And I have plenty of sock patterns (I love you, Knitty and Magknits! You enable me so!) that I’m dying to knit, so it all works out.
Actually, some of the sock yarn is going to be those typing gloves I mentioned. Since we have winter in July, and everything. Brr!
But before I start on those, I must get back to finishing up my WIPs (including the kitty jumper I’ve got done but for the sewing that’s for a certain small person), and working on that there Monkey. You know, if I had more DPNs, I could knit more pairs of socks at once…. *cough*

I went to the animal fair

So, once again I’ve been mainly too busy to knit, as I’ve had my friend staying (we had a brilliant time), and then my aunt sadly died (she had cancer), so there was her funeral in Blackpool to go to – one of those bitter-sweet things where it’s not an occasion you want to be happening, but it is nice to be with the extended family. *sigh*
Once I was back from that, I was working on Purdyshop.com, which is an online store for handmade designer glass jewellery, belonging to one of my best friends. We got that finished and open on Friday – hoorah! There will probably be a few small tweaks needed, but all in all I’m pleased with it.
So, that means I have time to do other stuff again. Like knitting! In fact, as soon as I’ve finished writing this entry I shall be parking myself on the sofa with an mp3 player full of knitting podcasts, BP, and the Monkey socks. Yay!
BP needs a sleeve sewn on, then I have to pick up again and knit the edging. So, nearly done! At long last!! As for the Monkey socks, I’ve just finished the first one, so I’ll be casting on No. 2 once BP is finished. I really enjoyed the first one – I made a couple of slip ups due to not paying attention, but nothing disastrous. I’ll post pics of the process soon. I was going to do that tonight, but I’m impatient to get back to the actual knitting, so they’ll have to wait. Oh, except I already do have a photo of the first sock uploaded to the photo album when it was only a few rows ‘old’. I’ll put that in here then – here you go:

Continue reading “I went to the animal fair”

Too busy to knit!

I’ve been so mad busy over the last few days, I haven’t even had time to knit. And I want to! I want to be knitting my Monkey sock, or swatching for the fingerless ‘typing gloves’ I’m planning, or starting that cardigan… or hey, maybe the other one! Or the jumper! Or even *cough* sewing the second sleeve onto BP and picking up the stitches to finish that off at last. (I have now developed a fear of blocking that project… interestingly this only started worrying me once the seaming and sleeve setting went off without a hitch. Do I have a general finishing phobia here? Am I afraid to let my babies go off into the big wide world?)
Still, I’m off to pick my friend up from Heathrow tomorrow – that’s one of the reasons why I’ve been so rushed off my feet. So I’ll have about 3 hours on the train to knit away on my lovely Monkey sock and listen to podcasts. I’m rather looking forward to it!