Thursday, October 11, 2012

Toe-Up Socks

You are seeing it correctly. I'm knitting two socks at the same time. When I called to tell my oldest daughter, I thought my buttons would pop off with pride. (Let's hope 'Pride doesn't go before the fall.")  I knew she better than anyone else would appreciate this accomplishment. She who speaks knitting and crochet fluently knows her mother has neither in her repertoire.
So imagine my amazement when this book spoke to me in English no less. Not that it was perfectly clear at first. Kind of like reading the King James Version of the Bible. You've got to read it a while to get the flow of the language to understand. So that is just what I did. Before going to sleep every night for three nights, I read the instructions before falling asleep. Maybe that was the ticket. Some of you may recall those learn a new language while you sleep tapes. Could be I was having rehearsals in my sleep but what ever it was, it worked.
When I sat down to begin knitting two socks at one time toe up, I did it. Okay, I did it correctly on the fifth try of ripping out ten rows or more but none the less I didn't have to call our daughter and ask how to.... I'm sure she was holding on to her hat in shock.
Lest you think I'm a complete beginner, I'm not a complete stranger to knitting socks. I added it up and I've made seven pairs. One for our son, one for our middle child, and two for our oldest daughter. She showed the most appreciation wearing hers often so she got two pairs. And last I made a pair for my husband who is a member of Goldilocks Club and said his were "Too thick" and he never wore them. Hasn't he ever heard of boot socks? His loss for they are now mine.
The other two pairs I made for me and they were thinner but didn't fit quite like I wanted. The whole process was a bit frustrating since because of my ADD and complete lack of short term memory, I had a hard time keeping track of what I did with which sock since they were knitting one at a time. Keep notes you say. I tried but I kept forgetting. Even having two going on separate double pointed needles didn't work super as I tried to knit on one sock and then the other keeping them progressing relatively the same pace and would begin day dreaming getting far ahead on one and not the other. 
Interruptions and lack of wondering mind control impeded my progress as I rip ripped repeatedly and then forgot how many rows I'd ripped. I know, I'm a hopeless case.  You can see how frustration for a time got the better of me until....
Well, at last I thought I had found a perfect solution until I opened the first few pages. Then I discovered it was written in Greek, or at least it appeared to me for though a number of times I studied its pages and stared at my needles and 40 inches of cable, I couldn't make any sence of it. Entirely not the books fault for you must learn to walk before you can run. So it was set aside to the Some Day pile to be picked up on occasion and frustration once more renewed.  
Then last year I determined that I would begin learning to read a pattern. I had my oldest daughter give me lessons on stitches and what symbols meant on her visits home. Just a few here and there for I have no short term memory and without that it is very hard to create long term memory. This meant some were for repeated amazement. I can be so easily entertained. And some were put to action repeatedly where they were able to imprint upon my long term memory.
I was able to do a few simple hats and scarves from more complex patterns. Ones my daughter would call very easy peazy, then came   spring and it's accompaning chores which monopolized my time.
Then I spied this book on sale.  How perfect could this be? Two socks knitted at once and you didn't have to know exactly how much yarn to start with. Something very important since I have no idea how much yardage is in my homespun yarns. How awesome, I could knit away and decide just how tall to make the socks depending on how fast the yarn disappeared.
It has been a perfect marriage. The cast on that my daughter says baffles many, I caught on fairly quickly. I only had to try it 8 times. Sh.... I'm a slow learner. Don't deflate my ego. I kept forgetting what I had just done until I formed a visual pattern because of repetition.

I know I need to graduate to other patterns in this book. I'm not really following any one afraid I'll be overwhelmed by too many instructions so I'm half making things up by using a smaller needle and different number of stitches, more of course. I'm doing plain stitching on top and knit two, purl two ribbing on the bottom but hey, I figure the next socks can be a bit more out there. Out there exploring what ssk is and psso. Yes,  I've read the translations but dude, what language they talking in?

Maybe I just need to read them every night for a week and let my mind sleep on it. Who knows, it might be a whole heaping smarter than me.

Then again, think there is a U-tube out there on stitch translations?


  1. Yeay, Holly! I love knitting 2 socks at a time on one long needle (2SML)!!! When you are done, you are DONE! I've got a pair on the needles now that I about need magnifying glasses for-size 00 needles and what everyone else calls "thread", but it is really just sock weight yarn. THIN sock yarn, but sock yarn none the less. Have fun on the journey, Holly!

  2. I love it! I'd be doing good if I could knit at all.