Socks at Home: BCS Carded Stripes

I try quite intentionally not to post more than one blog post a day. But as I say, this month has just gotten out of hand. You’ll see why when I post the monthly round-up! But for now, here is the first pair of socks that I knit entirely in the month of June.

This yarn was a bit different from most of the sock yarns I’ve been spinning so far. It was a cabled yarn, and came out a good bit thicker than my default, despite my best efforts to spin fine.

I knit it up on US 1.5s (3mm?), whereas most of my socks this year have been knit on US 0 (2mm). Instead of my usual 64 stitch foot circumference, I settled on 56 stitches. This proved just about right for my foot, although it made for ribbing that I struggle a bit to get over my heel!

The 56 stitch circumference should have made for a quick knit, except that I decided to knit these two-at-a-time. This brilliant idea was in order to maximize my yarn. Unfortunately, it meant not just knitting two socks at a time, but knitting from both ends of two balls of yarn. This produced an impossible tangle. I gave up figuring out how to keep things untwisted, and just soldiered on through about three stripes before I had to cut one of the colors. Oh well. Remind me not to do that again. I did get a respectable ankle length out of barely 200 yards of yarn, though.

The wool itself was Hill Radnor, a new breed for our study. It is a toothier wool, so much so that some who ordered the study disliked it and sold it on without spinning it! I had no trouble at all spinning it, but knitting it down tightly for socks was rather hard on my hands. This was exacerbated by the fact that cable-structured yarn is a little nubbly to feel, rather than the nice round-ness of a typical 3+ply. It was prickly and had a sort of dry, squeaky feel to it. My hope, however, is that between the toothiness of the yarn, the tightness of the knitting, and the tight cable structure of the yarn, I will have made a pair of sock that wears like iron.

Colorwise? I don’t know why I knit these socks in stripes! Just that I wanted to. I knew I wanted to try the carded batts as solids, and I knew I wanted to make socks, and I knew that I wanted to make a pair that looked like a pair, rather than just two solid socks in different colors. The result is very Seussian. That is absolutely the chief adjective that I apply to them.

And of course, because the colors were dyed by the incredible Katrina, they go together very comfortably, despite belonging on opposite sides of the color wheel. I’m not sure how something so whimsical could also be subtle and tasteful, but I put that result at her feet.

Hopefully, like the works of Dr. Seuss, these will be as long-lasting as they are memorable.

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