In knitting news, I've launched into the realms of sock knitting with my first practice sock. It's a toddler sock made with some cheap-o, self-striping acrylic in fun springtime colors.
As is the norm for me, I jumped in without a plan or a decent set of instructions. Instead of following a basic, top-down sock pattern, I decided to knit from the toe up.
Having never done short rows or turned heels or Kitchener stitch, it seemed smart to try toe-up first. Anything to avoid Kitchener stitch grafting, right?
Online resources favor the magic loop technique for toe-up socks. This knitter knows naught of the magic loop technique. I freely admit rationalizing about needing to buy a set of Addi Turbo Circular Lace Needles. (For more on knitting impulses, see my blog post: Startitus and Knitting Delusions) Rather than buying new circulars to tackle magic loop theory, I'm using DPNs that I already have.
No one ever said my way (a convoluted dirt-track meandering aimlesly along the the path to sock knitting enlightenment) was easy. Needlessly complicated is how I do things, whether or not I mean to.
Wiping away sweaty palms, I set to work: adult-size Toe-up Socks with a Difference by Wendy D. Johnson, stitch counts from a top-down kiddie sock pattern, plus an actual toddler sock for reference.
First, I learned the Turkish cast on; a fascinating, weaverly technique. It did take several tries before I got the correct tension in my wrapped loops, but it was so much fun to do I didn't mind ripping out and starting again until I got it right. This link includes a quicktime video tutorial: Mingled Yarn: Turkish Cast On
That got me to the point of creating the gusset. Wendy's toe-up sock pattern uses gusset increases on the bottom of the foot, instead of two small side gussets underneath the ankle.
The photo above shows the halfway point in the heel gusset increases by my best guess-timation. After this section is finished it will be time to turn the heel and tackle short rows.
But I've blathered on long enough about this little sock. The rest is best left for another day.