24 August 2007

A Tale of Two Socks

I keep a pair of socks on the needles now. This practice began when I started school. They're easy walk around with projects (esp if they're on a magic loop), and they're usually simple enough that I can work on them anywhere. The embossed leaves were not this class of sock, but I did walk around with them as much as I could.

The socks that I have been walking around with are from stash yarn. I think I got the yarn at A Major Knitwork when I got the ugly brown-n-black Trekking XXL yarn. It's Lana Grossa Meilenweit Cotton Spirit. It's a self stripping yarn with a 45% Cotton, 42% Wool, 13% Polyamide mix. I tihnk the yarn is nice looking enough...not spectacular, but fine. I decided to do a simple 3x3 rib on the cuff and down the top of the foot. It knits fine, but it's a bit hard on the hands. Not as bad as the Sockotta, but my finger feels rough after a session of heavy knitting on the sock. I've decided to avoid cotton sock yarn from now on unless it has a substantial amount of elastic in the mix; read: Espirit by Elann, or Cascade Fixation. Maybe it's the cotton/wool mix that makes it so hard on my hands, but whatever I'm over this mix.

Here is the first of the pair. The picture is horrible, sorry, but you have an idea of what the colors are like. I have to cast on for the second sock. I cast on for the second sock while waiting to be picked up for surgery. My mother was totally stressing me out and I was trying to suppress the tears so I knit. However, I somehow--under the stress--cast on the wrong number of stitches; then they took the sock home despite me requesting that they bring it to the room for me post-op. **sigh** So, when I looked at it again I realized my error and frogged the three rows.

When I realized I would be readmitted to the hospital for the dehydration I decided to cast on for a plain sock, and that I would use the Austermann Step that I got as a gift from Melissa at least a year ago. See, more stash knitting! :)

So, I cast on did 10 rows of ribbing for the cuff and headed on down the leg in stockinette...well, knit stitch only. I worked on the sock in the bad lighting in my bedroom all day as I waited for the doctor's office nurse to call me back and tell me to go to the hospital. I knit about four inches of sock and it looked the same color. I sat there looking at it thinking, where the fuck are the stripes? Ugh! I'm soooo glad I didn't buy this! Four inches of the same color is NOT variegation! The nurse never called me, and I went to sleep still annoyed at the sock.

The next day I got up and had decided I was going to work. If that heifer couldn't be arsed to call me back then why the fuck should I miss days from work? Yeah, two feet outside my door and I realized there was no way I could make it from the parking lot to my desk so I went back in for my carefully planned "hospital bag" and headed to the emergency room. I didn't take the bag in, but I did take the sock with me because you know: stress relief.

In the bright white light of the ER I realized I had been wrong about the poor sock that kept me semi-calm the previous day. I felt like I needed to apologize to the yarn, to Melissa, and to the sock. It was indeed variegated...subtly so, but there were three colors where I had seen only one. I worked on that sock non-stop in the ER, then in the room that had been arranged for me until they started with the attempt at inserting the IV.

I finished up that first sock in the hospital after my hand stopped aching, then I switched over to Madeline's Embossed Leaves. Word got around amongst the nurses about my knitting and there were lots of visitors for the Embossed Leaves, but the Plain Step sock is the one that kept me from completely freaking out during a highly stressful situation.

Last night I happily turned the heel and am now heading down gusset lane on the second of the pair. As soon as it's done it's back to the hard cotton. The Step is nice. Not merino soft, but nice to work with. I cannot say that I see a difference in the moisture level of my hands because of the Aloe and Jojoba Oil that is in the yarn, but it's been a pleasurable knit.

That is the tale of my two socks, and how I plan to avoid Second Sock Syndrome (SSS).


Anonymous Anonymous said...

So glad that you are better and that you eventualy liked the Step. Glad you finally did something with it. Keep up the sock knitting and I just might send you more sock yarn.

24 August, 2007 14:50  
Anonymous Dixie said...

I don't love the colour patterns in Step, but I really enjoy the aloe. I have two pairs of socks in Step -- one based on blues, the other based on pinks. I like the blues 'cause the base colour is pleasant. I can take or leave the pink.

It's good to know your socks are keeping you sane. I owe you an e-mail. :)

27 August, 2007 09:51  

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