February Socks: Rivergrass

While we don’t do much to mark Valentine’s Day chez kimbelina, I think I’ve managed to knit the most perfect socks for this month: they just scream valentines and chocolate and love.

The yarn is in a colourway called Scarletberry and I love the shades of pink in it. So girly and fun and seasonally appropriate for today. This is my first time knitting with Twizzlefoot from Mountain Colors — I picked up two skeins when I was at TNNA last June and I’ve been hanging on to them waiting for just the right pattern. These Rivergrass socks seemed like the perfect project.

I love the way the socks look but I’m not sure that I’m equally enamoured with the resulting fabric. The yarn is thin compared to my usual sock yarn and I think I should have gone down a needle size (maybe 2 mm instead of my usual 2.25 mm?) to ensure that they wear well.

Perhaps instead of socks, my second skein is destined to become a scarf or shawl: something that doesn’t require me to knit with toothpick-sized needles and will make the most of the skein’s generous yardage.

Now that these are finished, I’m on an 11-day socks break until the next HerStory Sock Club knitalong begins, so it’s time to turn my attention to some non-sock projects. I’ve got a baby blanket on the needles, a hat that is more that halfway done, and a couple other projects in the works — thankfully, with the Olympic games on in the background, I’ve got a lot of scheduled knitting time planned in the next little while.

HerStory Sock Club: January

Well, that was fast — in just under a week, I have managed to knit an entire pair of socks.

This retina-searing-in-a-good-way colourway is everything you could want to help beat the winter blahs; it certainly lives up to its name of Radioactive Rainbow. Inspired by the work of Marie Curie, January’s HerStory Sock Club offering from Knitted Wit was just the thing to counter the overcast skies, rain, and snow.

Since I wasn’t sure how the different colours were going to play together when knit up, I opted for Shannon Squire‘s Otherwise Engaged socks pattern. Tried and true, this is one of my favourite patterns for multi-coloured yarn because it seems to break up some of the larger blocks of colour. In this case, the rainbows only pooled and spiralled once I started knitting the legs, which is fine with me!

I can’t say enough good things about Victory Sock, the yarn base for the HerStory Sock Club. It’s got great yardage and the yarn is smooth and tightly plied — even the socks I knit for Adam seem to last until he outgrows them (and that’s saying something). Already I’m looking forward to seeing the February colourway — only a few weeks till it’s revealed!

January Socks: Mingus

So far, this year’s plan for Operation Sock Drawer is 100% successful — it’s only January 24 and I’ve already got this month’s pair of socks knit.

Oh my goodness, I love everything about these socks. This was the perfect pair with which to kick off the year: I ended up with the perfect combination of yarn and pattern. I’ve knit several pairs of Mingus socks over the years but I think this might just be my favourite. It’s the first pair I’ve knit with Super Sock 4-Ply from Twisted Owl Fiber Studio in this amazing Pirate Ship colourway. Really, anything teal immediately earns super high marks from me, but the saturation of colour in this yarn makes it even more special.

The pattern is written cuff-down, but anyone who knows me knows that there was no way that was happening — I’m a toe-up-or-not-at-all kind of sock knitter. Thankfully, I don’t think the pattern suffers from being turned upside down.

I’m glad to have finished these so quickly because tomorrow I begin hosting the HerStory Sock Club Knitalong with Knitted Wit and I need to get my yarn wound and ready to cast on.

Yeah, in a highly caffeinated state of feeling like I could definitely take over the world given enough coffee, I decided that in addition to my personal sock-of-the-month club, I would also knit an additional 12 pairs of socks in colourways inspired by women whose contributions to STEM should be celebrated. How could I say no to such an amazing club? And really, when I have let the laws of time and space dictate what I can do? Perish the thought!

Stripy Socks!

We’re not even two weeks into the new year and I’ve already got a new pair of socks. Well, actually, Adam has a new pair of socks. It’s kind of funny the way that works, but since our feet are roughly the same size (at least for the moment), many of the pairs originally knit for me somehow end up in his sock drawer.

In this case, Adam saw the socks in progress and was immediately smitten with both the colours and the stripes — and since I didn’t feel like I needed to keep these, I told him they’d be his. Adam has always loved anything handmade, but now that he’s started knitting, I think he has a newfound appreciation for the effort involved.

The yarn is from Canon Hand Dyes and the colourway is Tiger Lily (part of the Peter Pan club) — this was my first time knitting with Amy’s Bruce Yak Fingering yarn and it definitely takes a bit of knitting to get used to it. It’s thinner and slightly more slippery than my usual sock yarn choices so I will definitely go down a needle size next time I use this yarn (I’ve got two more skeins tucked away). I love all of Amy’s self-striping yarns; the stripes match up almost perfectly between the two socks and the contrasting heels and toes make for an extra-special pair.

And I’ve actually got enough yarn left that I could probably knit a pair of socks for Leah as well — but right now I need to knit the other two pairs of socks I have on the go before I possibly contemplate socks for her. Besides, these days she likes to go through my stash on her own to find what she considers Leah-worthy colourways — I see some sparkly unicorn-inspired sock-knitting in my future!

New Year, New Socks

While I’m not a huge fan of new year’s resolutions (too much pressure!), I do love new year’s traditions — and my favourite tradition is the do-it-yourself sock-of-the-month club. In fact, I think this is the fourth year in a row that I’ve put together a basketful of a dozen skeins of yarn to keep me motivated to knit socks all year long (and after several years, I think this has now reached tradition status).

Tucked inside my basket are skeins from Knitted Wit, Canon Hand Dyes, Twisted Owl Fiber Studio, and Mountain Colors: I’ve got lots of great options for socks (some for me but I’ve got a few skeins earmarked for gifts over the year as well).

Some years I’ve managed to match up skeins with patterns ahead of time, but I didn’t bother this year; instead, these are a few of the ones I’m hoping to knit over the next 12 months:

I’ve actually got two other pairs of socks on the needles right now, but I think I’m going to wind that luscious teal yarn at the front of the basket from TOFS (it’s called Pirate Ship!) and knit up a pair of Mingus socks. For me. Really, I figure I’ve got all year to knit for other people but after two straight months of Christmas knitting, it’s time for a little selfish crafting!