Jobo Designs

Letting the crafty creative juices flow. Knitting, spinning, crafting, dyeing, rabbits, sheep and more!

1. October 2009 08:21
by Jobo

Elvish Leaves... Blocked and Ready to Rock!

1. October 2009 08:21 by Jobo | 1 Comments

Finally, last night the weather and my hectic work schedule cooperated and allowed a sock photo session before dark!


Elvish Leaves (Elfine's Socks by Anna Bell)

JL Vinca Sock Yarn

Overall, I am quite pleased with the results.  These socks were my first pair done toe-up using Judy's magic cast on for DPNs.  If you haven't tried this technique, it was a little tricky at first but pretty reasonable.  I did find that you needed to go back and tighten up that first cast on row at the end of the toe (similar to the process of snugging up a kitchener stitch toe after the graft has been completed) but the real draw for me was no "wrapping and turning" back and forth for the toe.  The M1 increases (I did Knit Front and Back increases) made a nice clean line at the toe.

You can see it a bit in this close up - The yarn itself had some really nice colour shade progressions.  I really liked the way the 2 strands changed colour at different rates.   Several times I found myself thinking... is it changing colour?  I dunno?  and then looking back after an hours work and seeing the very gradual soft shift.  I don't know why I like this style of yarn, I just do.  It keeps things interesting :)

I really liked working on this cascading leaf style pattern.  It was very predictable, highly memorizable, and easy to pick up when put down unexpectedly.  The pattern was very clearly written and easy to follow, a "must knit" really if you are a sock-a-teer.  Before blocking the leaves were quite bumpy and lumpy, but after a warm water bath and an overnight on the blockers, things smoothed right out.  I am always amazed about how much better things look after a bath and a block.  Even the stockinette sole looked smoother after blocking.

As far as the yarn goes, I was skeptical about whether or not I would be happy with the finished product.  Some consumers have argued that no two balls of Vinca are ever the same, but I found my two balls to knit up quite predictably the same.  It seems there was a similar amount of each colour in the skeins, similar progressions, and very much alike from my experience.  I did find the yarn to be a bit thin and splitty, but for lace socks, I wasn't really concerned with thickness and warmth.  For light and lacy this style of yarn was perfect.  The next real test will come when these babies are worn and washed a few times.  There were some linty bits here and there in the skein, but I'm not sure if this has anything to do with the yarn being pilly or felty.  The yarn seemed to like the blocking bath, so who knows. I'll keep you posted on the durability of the finished socks.

This was also my first time working short row heels in contrasting colours.  I was concerned during the construction process that knitting the heel in line with the rest of the sock would perhaps interrupt my colour progression from the foot to the ankle.  So I knit the heels with a contrasting colour from the outside of the ball.  This of course means more ends to weave in, but I really like the effect it achieved.  It makes the heel stand out and sets them apart from the plain stockinette soles I think :)

Once again, another pair bites the dust... and my Nanners are coming along nicely too.  I hope to show you more about them later in the week.  Sock one is up past the heel, and I have a good 2 hour wait at the doctor's office this afternoon.  I would say the first one will be finished before I get home.  Funny how I'd be furious years ago if someone kept me waiting that long... Now I just pack knitting accordingly and I'm good to go!


Comments (1) -

These are great looking socks.  My favorite part is the heel. Thanks for telling how you worked them.  Perhaps ONE DAY I'll gather up the courage to try a toe-up.  I hope I can remember this pattern by then.  : )

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