Wednesday, July 30, 2008

House of Thuja

I am beginning to get the hang of this thing called sock knitting :o)
~ Project Details ~
Pattern: I wanted my next pair of socks (SOS#2 Yay!) to be something with a simple pattern and quick (read as thicker yarn Haha).

I knew what yarn I wanted to use, and it was just a matter of matching it up with the right pattern.

Since I was using a variegated yarn I really needed something not too busy. So I went to my best pattern research tool (Ravelry of course!) and kept coming across the Thuja pattern in the type of yarn I wanted to put to work. Decision made!

Curiosity finally got to me and I looked up what Thuja means as the pattern designer never mentioned why he selected this name, just why he was motivated to make them.

This is a popular pattern, after all it was on Knitty! Even my knit/e-blog pal Babbling Brook (Stacey) just recently finished her Thuja's too!

Size: The pattern is originally intended to fit a man (9-11), and only "one" size was given. Well we ain't all one size!

Of course I did toe-up

as I love to try on my sock as I go, to reassure myself they are fitting. You know I can't be putting all that work in those tiny little needles in vain! ;o)

I went down from the primary stitch count of 44 to 40 and wish I had decreased a little bit more to 36-38 stitches.

These are truly comfy socks!

I consider them my house socks!!

Time: Not long at all, just shy of a week!

As I mentioned earlier I wanted a break from the smaller needles and thinner sock yarn...for now ;op The worsted weight yarn was perfect!

Also this easy sock project became my commuter knitting which helped me plug away on the foot! Besides I still have yet to make a full ankle sock as well.

Needles: I used my Harmony needles in US4 and then US2.

I coulda (woulda shoulda) went down a needle size on the sock, but I was adamant about wanting to be on bigger needles! ;op

I switched to US2s for the ribbing around the ankle, and then back to the US4s for the bind off.

Again I shoulda BO with a US3 as it ended up being too loose.

Yarn: I had been sitting on this yarn since February!

I used Lorna's Laces Shepherd Worsted in Pilsen and it was just lovely to work with on my Thuja's!
The yarn is soft and glides along. I loved all my favorite colors swirling together of red, purple and chocolate. It was really a pleasure to knit with it and my first time with Lorna's Laces!

I do have more LL in my stash and look forward to working with the different weights soon.

Cost: $18 for one hank

I guess that is like $9 per sock...wow

I did have plenty left over since I didn't make full length socks and plan to use it for baby items/odds & ends

What I learned: I did use the Magic CO this time, rather than the Turkish CO

I have used the Magic CO before on another project (twice on my bucket hats), and I really liked it as a provisional CO substitute.

.....mmmmh the difference to me is that the Turkish CO is easily brought to anyone's remembrance, where I think the Magic CO takes a tad bit more maneuvering and a quick refresher if you don't use it often.

Other than that they are pretty much the same IMO!!

One of my main goals for this pair of socks was to learn how to do a heel flap toe-up

and I was able to do that!! :oD

I used Zhenya's Mash-up Recipe pattern for the heel. I liked the fact you could plug in numbers to match the kind of socks you are making, but I must confess having to pick up stitches for a toe-up sock is not something I want to do! Haha! Call me a knitting bum! ;op

I will say I had a "designer element" on my second heel turn with having some of my pick-up stitches on the outside (told you I didn't like it!), but the multitude of the yarn colors camouflages it so it is cool! Besides they are just house socks ;o)

But I am so glad I tried this alternative to heel flaps, as I plan to try out more.

The other technique I learned towards the end of this project was the Stretchy Bind Off that Babbling Brook (Stacey) put me onto! Thanks so much!!

I really liked it and I do believe it has a nice give to it!

I definitely think my ankles are too loosebut that is probably because of the needle size I selected. I believe if I wasn't so concerned about having a tight BO it would have been just fine on a size 3.

Modifications: Not much as it was a simple sock, other than that the pattern was written for top/down rather than toe-up.

And I also changed up the heel with an eye of partridge.

Verdict: Definitely a good "starter" pattern and the yarn was a good match as it was thick and variegated to hide things while I am still learning ;op
I enjoyed knitting these socks. And I am ready for more in August!

29 Comments:

  1. Adrienne said...
    Look at you knitting up socks over there! I'm so jealous! LOL They look great!
    Stacey said...
    Those are fantastic! :D I'm glad I could help! :)

    Thanks for the link to what Thuja means - I never knew either!
    melissaknits said...
    You're hired.
    Blanche Knits in DC said...
    Love them :) They are just awesome socks. The colors are perfect too! Congrats on pair #2 for SOS '08!
    del said...
    Pretty, pretty! I like non-busy patterns for variegated yarns like that. Plus, you learned a whole bunch knitting these.
    muchadored said...
    Very pretty, Stacey! I did that pattern for my pop-pop for his birthday, and it's neat to see them in such bright colors. (Mine were a very grandfatherly grey.)
    Channon said...
    BEAUTIFUL. The colorway looks like you. Enjoy, you sock knitter you!
    StarSpry said...
    They look great!
    Wendy said...
    You go gurl!!! I knew you were a closet sock knitter!
    wildflower38 said...
    Pretty socks!! I knew you could do it :)
    Sheila said...
    Check you out... knitting socks like a pro. They are pretty.
    gold said...
    Very cute socks!Greatjob!
    cici said...
    You go gurl. just in time for SOS/08 round 2.. :D!!!
    Zhenya said...
    They look great and VERY comfy - congratulations!
    Dave said...
    Very nice! I do believe you've got the hang of it. :-)

    Lots of good techniques in there too. Just be careful -- socks are addictive. LOL!
    turtlegirl76 said...
    Yay toe-up socks! I'm so glad you're catching the sock bug. =) They look great.
    diddlinaknits said...
    YAY for you-happy to see how well you are doing int he sock department and a pair of socks in a week to me thats super impressive since mine always take a month or more lol!
    Great job and cant wait to see more. I love hoe you just dive in to learn new things! much respect chica!!
    Alison Boon said...
    Another stunning pair of socks. THe yarn is a gorgeous blend of all my favourite colours too.
    Janet Richards said...
    Somehow I missed at the CP meeting that they were made of Lorna's worsted, that yarn is soooooo soft. That's why the colors were so pretty! Great job!
    Cas... said...
    Nice socks! I think I need to start working on some socks myself. Those came out nice and I can't wait to see your next ones.

    Keep up the good work!
    Pajnstl said...
    you are just on a sock kick! lol

    Those are cute and I SEE you with the pictures.. You're getting better and better. I like the one with your feet and the yellow flower. looks like spring!
    Robin said...
    Very pretty!! The colorway is very vibrant. You're learning so many things on each project, which is really cool.
    tiennie said...
    Very cute! I've made a few pairs myself. :)
    Zonda said...
    Oh, now I want to knit my skein of that colorway! Gorgeous!

    Hehe..great job on those socks too! Just becareful, it may be all you want to knit soon ;)
    Le-Teisha said...
    I sit here extremely jealous. I vow to make a pair of socks before the year is over.
    Liz said...
    I love the colours of those socks. You know, that means you are a proper grown up knitter now you can do socks.....!
    Michelle said...
    OHHH those are sooooo pretty! It's a pattern I'm planning on making! I really love them! Nice job!!!!
    Octopus Knits said...
    Great socks!
    moo said...
    I have been away. Awesome,socks Stacey! And love your pedicure~so pretty.

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