It has been since I last bought yarn!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Old Dog... New Tricks

I have been knitting for almost as long as I've known my husband. (10 years!) Of that time, I have been a "serious" knitter for about 6 of those years... looking to make new things and challenge myself. When I first began knitting I set one objective for myself: with every project, I had to learn something new. Be it an ssk, a k2tog or some other technique that pushes us past our comfort zone, I wanted to learn something new.

It's been harder to grab on to a new technique after you've been knitting for quite awhile, either because you have projects you like to return to (socks), or projects that you must knit (baby blankets). But every now and again I still find myself pondering over a new technique.

This summer I challeged the MiL with something neither of us had done before... toe up socks. Are you shocked? I have NEVER knitted a sock from the toe up prior to 2 Friday ago! I don't know how much success I would have had, had it not been for Cat Bordhi's videos.

We chose the famous Wendy D Johnson's toe up instructions and away we went.

First hurdle? Judy's Magic Cast On. (video link) This video is worth watching for Cat Bordhi's instruction, whether you ever intend to knit toe up socks or not. Cat's description on what to do is HILARIOUS (4:14 and beyond)... and you're certain not to forget what she's trying to show you.


That Judy. She knows WHAT the heck she's doing. And, yes, it is kind of like magic.

Next up... Wendy told me to knit the toe. So, a couple of make 1's later, my toe looked like this:


Why yes... it DOES look like a sock toe! Thanks for noticing.


The foot part was easy, it's just knitting round and round and round and round, until, as Wendy reminded me, I was 2.5 inches short of my heel.

Then I had to turn back to Cat's sage and hilarious videos once again to figure out the instructions for the short row heel wraps. (As usual, Cat cracks me up!)


It's not perfect... but I am still quite please that it looks like a heel! With the short row heel out of the way, it was more of knitting round and round and round and round... until it came time to bind off my 10 rows of ribbing.

Sometimes when you bind off in ribbing, you can lose the elasticity of the ribbing by binding off too tightly. NO MORE, with Jeny's Surpsingly Stretchy Bind Off, it's well, surprisingly stretchy. You can watch more Cat Bordhi here, and she'll show it to you in lovely video detail!


Yup. It looks like a sock!! (Yardage is light on this yarn... so these will be shorter socks.)

I had so much fun knitting this sock and learning new techniques I even immediately cast on for sock #2. Suck it second sock syndrome!


Learning toe up has opened a huge door of sock options I'd previously gazed lovingly at, but dismissed as not for me, given their construction. But I fear the toe up NO MORE and as a result, you're probably going to be seeing even more socks around here in the next while.

PS- What would I have EVER done without the internet and knitting videos? Let's not think about it, shall we?

No comments: