By Carlyn M.
For 2019 my first Finished Object (FO) was socks. I wanted to challenge myself to tackle something that I had avoided because of its challenge. I had a great knitting buddy in college, she enjoyed socks, so I thought I should try too. The first patterns I worked on had gusset heels. Which if you don’t know, involves making a flap and then picking up stitches to continue with the rest of the object. I was never taught how to pick up stitches, so naturally I wasn’t very good at it. I hated the gaps and the obvious signs of inexperience. So I stopped making them. ( I did however, in true form, stock up on sock yarn, just incase I wanted to try again)
However, instead of picking a gusset heel sock pattern, I wanted to tackle a short row heel. Like what store bought socks have. I feel like it fits my heel better than the gusset sock.
Bonus . . .
short rows have been historically hard for me to wrap my brain around. I think the confusion came from the first pattern that I tackled short rows. Don’t ask me what the pattern was, I don’t remember. But what I do remember is the frustration of how the directions were laid out. Either the concept of wrap and turn was discussed in the terms section of the directions and I didn’t care to actually read it or there was too much assumed knowledge that I didn’t know that caused me to always question myself.
Last year I tackled Archer by Elizabeth Doherty. The neck is short rows. I had to restart this 4 different times because of previously said confusion and frustration.
Challenging things are what makes the world go round. It is in challenges where we learn and grow. A perfect part of life.
So this time I googled and looked for a video to guide me through this process. I wish I could find the original video that gave me my Aha! moment, but these videos one and two by Myra Wood cover in easy detail everything you need to know. The Aha! video had the knitter using stitch markers more so to remind you where the wrapped yarn way. The assumed knowledge I was missing was to knit the wrap and the wrapped stitch together, not to make 2 different stitches.
I would encourage you if you are just as confused as I am to watch these videos, then read the instructions in your pattern and then watch again to identify each step. In my opinion the instructions for wrap and turn don’t always match what I visually see in my head.
Finished Object details breakdown
So, if you are looking into diving into the sock world, I would recommend So Vanilla Sock by Mary Lukas. Directions are easy peasy. Gives you a basic sock pattern. Offers creative freedom to include color work or stitch patterns for extra flair.
My only complaint with color work is what happens at the end.
SO MANY ENDS TO WEAVE IN.
I found this skien of yarn by Ewe2Yarn at The McKinney Knittery that I had visited over the holidays. This particular skein is made of 5 coordinating color mini skeins, the yarn is called Swirl, 100% Bluefaced Leicester fingering weight. This yarn is pretty soft for being wool and knit up really beautifully. This color way basically is my house so thats why I came home with it.
So, today I can finally say I have conquered short rows and socks once more. I may actually make other socks in the future.