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Monday, December 08, 2014

It's a Fab Funky Fibre Rainbow

If you follow me on Instagram you will have seen a few progress photos of my rainbow socks. I cast on 2 weeks ago for a bit of selfish knitting in the middle of mad deadline knitting. These socks are addictive - just one more stripe! The yarn is Fab Funky Fibres and they do a big selection of selfstriping hand-dyed yarn (as a former hand-dyer I can testify to what a huge job it is to create even stripes like this - I'm impressed!)

I divided the skein in two by winding the whole skein into a centre pull cake. Then I wound off approx 50gr which meant that the two yarn cakes were wound in opposite directions as I didn't rewind the second half. I'm not at all fussed about matching stripes. In fact I quite prefer mis-matched socks.

I did these socks toe up, using a 2x2 rib, as I wanted to make them as long as possible. I could have made them a bit longer but the leg is 90 rounds and I got bored. I normally make my sock legs about 80 rounds. I decided to try another afterthought heel. I used to think that the only afterthought heels available were short row heels which I don't particularly like, whether they're afterthought or not. They don't fit my high instep very well. So I usually do a heel flap and gusset. But with the stripes on these socks, the increases for the gusset would disrupt the stripes so afterthought heel flap is really the best option.

In the summer I bought Lara Neel's Sock Architecture (Amazon link, Ravelry link). This book is great and I will do a more in-depth review once I've worked through more of the options. It has a selection of patterns but it also has a selection of pick and mix heels and toes for both toe up and top down socks. On my last pair of socks I tried the afterthought thumb-joint/hat top heel which I liked a lot and it fitted me very nicely. 

I looked through the book yesterday and chose the afterthought thumb-joint flat top heel. I think it's a great alternative to a short row heel for those who don't like short rows and this heel fits me perfectly.

The thumb-joint bit is the magic ingredients I think. I'm going to try this with a short row afterthought heel too, I think. Intrigued? Buy Lara Neel's Socks Architecture. You won't regret it. I bought the e-book but wish I'd bought the print book as well. 

I usually use the Turkish (sometimes known as Eastern) cast on for my toe up socks (google it, there are lots of tutorials or come to one of my classes). It's also the casting on method I teach in my Toe Up Socks classes. Lots of knitters prefer Judy's Magic Cast On. I've tried Judy's method before and it looked good but I didn't think it was any better than the Turkish Cast On which I find a lot quicker and easier to do. But I decided to re-visit Judy's Magic Cast On which I used for sock no 1 (on the right in the picture below). I did my regular Turkish Cast on for the second socks (on the left). I did my normal wedge toe. I've compared them carefully and I can't tell any difference between them. So use whichever method you prefer and find easier.

I will be knitting more of these rainbow socks. Emily wants a pair and a friend expressed her wish to have a pair when I saw her last week. I often knit her something for Christmas so I've decided to knit her a pair of rainbow socks. I'm seeing her next Tuesday and the yarn was ordered yesterday so I'll have to knit fast. First I need to find out which shoe size she is without her realising I'm knitting her socks. I'll cast on Emily's socks when we leave for Norway in 2 weeks. I may make it my travel day project.

Thank you to those who commented on my review of Holli Yeoh's Temptest book. I used a random number generator this morning to choose commenter number 8 which is Lin Malcolm. Lin please contact me with your Ravelry name and/or e-mail address and I'll arrange for Holli to contact you with your prize.

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