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Triumph and....Not Quite [May. 1st, 2012|04:47 pm]
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Blue One, the second pair of socks I ever knit, is now off the needles, but not yet ready to wear, thanks to...um...some errors.

However, it's been on my feet for an hour now:

If you think there's something odd about the toes, and notice dangling strands of yarn...you're right.    I grafted (Kitchener stitch) the toes, but...I can't get the loopy bits to agree to snug down.  Not sure why.  Aside from that,  some parts of the socks are still a little large:

But until I get the loopy/bulky  toes fixed, I can't wear this pair for real walking, etc.  Supposedly, you can start pulling the loops snug on the starting side of the grafting, and work your way across, but I can't find one on that end that will pull.   Here are the toes:


The right toe's better than the left.   You can at least see on the right one that the stitches should flow right across the toe end.  But  I started on the left one and was interrupted repeatedly, each time losing my concentration for long enough to make a mistake.   
Undoing the mistakes and trying to redo them was not only frustrating, but made the yarn fray and fuzz (it didn't help that two of the interruption-errors involved splitting the yarn with the strand I was using for grafting.

Another error, not caused by interruptions, was that I made the left toe slightly too short.  Just enough that I "feel" the end of the sock all the time.   To make up for that, the right one's just a little long.  Learning experiences, I tell myself.  On the whole, the socks fit better than before, though.  The slightly snugger cuff does leave an impression on my leg (so, no tighter!) but nothing like the dug-in groove that store-bought socks with their elastic leave.

These socks do have a left and right--and when I can do grafting better, I'll like that a lot.  My big toes don't like even gentle knit-sock-tension pushing them toward the center of my foot.   This way I make the sock straight up the "inside" or medial  side, with a curve on the outer or lateral side.

Next up: Green One, the first green pair.    And I'll put a pair of...probably red....on the needles tonight or tomorrow.


[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2012-05-02 02:36 am (UTC)
I'd definitely prefer to have the seam ridge outside. I wear the heavy commercial ragg-wool hiking socks inside out for that reason (but now I can't wear them because of all the elastic and the narrow cuffs.)

I understand how the Kitchener stitch is supposed to work--my problem is in handling the yarn loops. Every source warns not to tighten the stitches too much to start with, to tighten them later...but when moving from needle to needle, the loops that form tend to hang in the wrong place, and the needles impede both my sight and my attempt to move the loops where they should go. (Add in aging eyesight, a cataract growing in one eye, and hand cramps.) I *like* the idea of taking the stitches off the needles and putting them on something else...that would definitely make it easier for me. Thank you!
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[User Picture]From: xrian
2012-05-02 02:34 pm (UTC)
I know exactly what you mean! Don't pull the Kitchener stitches *tight* until you're done, but it's okay to pull them enough that they are not drooping all over and getting in the way.

Also, be very careful not to split the yarn, which effectively prevents you from loosening or tightening anything (you may want to use the fattest yarn needle you can find).

If the stitches are lying flat, then the concept of Kitchener is much easier: you go DOWN through one stitch and UP through its neighbor on the same side. Then go back to the stitch on the other side that you just came out of, go DOWN through that stitch and UP through its neighbor. I find down and up much easier to remember than whether to go through a stitch from right to left or left to right.
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2012-05-02 02:58 pm (UTC)
The stitches lying flat would also make it easier to deal with my real problem, which is ensuring that the crossing loops--when you go from needle to needle--do not tangle (and reduce me to near screaming frustratin when I'm trying to gently snug them in or even (!!) get the right tension to start with. Even when I try to snug them a little (just to get them to go straight across) they catch on the "corner" of the work and tend to "hop" (if they move at all) only partway to where they should be. I can't clearly see what's going on, the needles are in my way, and...it's headache/shoulder-cramp/stomach-churning time. The sequence isn't the problem...it's managing the materials.
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