Pink Monkey Knits

Using my opposable thumbs to knit up a storm!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

The Continuing Story of One Woman's Continuing Love Affair with a Color Combination 

Sometimes, a pattern will jump out at you, sucker punch you in the belly until you gasp for air, and shake you until you gather the materials to make it now, Now, NOW!!! Yes, sometimes love comes the hard, yet undeniably immediate way. Such was the case when I saw these arch-shaped socks in the Vogue Knitting Fall Preview. Head over heels, no pun intended.

While I liked the contrast in the pictured socks, hunter green and white are not colors that really appeal to me. I remembered I had some stashed Dale Tiur in fuschia in my stash, and right away I knew that I had to return to my hardcore color roots. Nothing would suit these stockings, for me, more than the pink and the black.

So last weekend, the lovely Lolly and I convened in her neck of the woods. She took the great pictures of me in my Carla, accompanied me to a delish veggie Indian buffet, and topped it off with a trip to All About Yarn (I might have had a hand in her recent yarn purchase). Back at Lauren's place, we chatted about some of our exciting plans and ideas and watched some good TV; while talking and watching I made a horribly tight, awful looking swatch. Despite it, I cast on with the best of hopes:

stocking start

The key to my success with these thus far has been finding a yarn hold that works for me. I am a continental knitter through and through, even though I'm right-handed. I attempted to throw and there was just no way it was going to happen for me. In looking through my knitting reference books, I mostly found information, some very insistent, on the necessity of doing two-color knitting with two hands. That is, until I consulted the Big Book of Knitting; Katharina Buss, the author, provided me with an Annie-Modesittt-like moment of knitting validation when she showed that it was possible to do stranded knitting with the left hand and provided a handy diagram. Here's the hold, for all you other continentalists out there:

stranded yarn hold

The black yarn is held normally, wrapped around my pointer finger from front to back, and grasped by the remaining fingers. The fuschia, which is my dominant yarn, is held oppositely; it is wrapped around my finger from back to front. The yarns form a little x in the back.

You'll notice that the sock is on DPNs in this photo. Returning readers may note that I dismissed my double points long ago, and the same is true with these. They started annoying the crap out of me, as if the Fair Isling wasn't challenging enough, so my beloved stocking has been put into time out until my new circulars arrive. Yes, I caved to the Knit Picks evil empire. They're cheap and I blew all my cash on Tiur.

A note to anyone else attempting this pattern: First of all, there are a few major errors in the pattern in the magazine, so replace your magazine version with this one. Secondly, be sure to measure your calves and compare the finished measurements with those of the pattern, as the finished dimensions are made to fit anorexic giants. I had to add about three inches to the circumference and shorten the portion before the shaping about an inch and a half. The pattern is easy to modify, so no excuses!