Tag Archives: socks

Knitting as Therapy – The Joy of Socks…

socks knitting

I’ve rediscovered the joy of knitting socks…hooray!

I don’t know why I stopped, but I started again over the Christmas holiday when the seasonal cold germ dropped in, uninvited, and ground everything else to a halt.

I was rummaging pathetically around in the studio looking for something to do which required no flash of inspiration, no tracking down of supplies, no complicated instructions to follow and there in a little bag I found…the yarn…the pattern…the needles…and one completed sock just waiting for it’s mate to be knitted up – perfect!

I’m embarrassed to say that just now whilst looking through the archives to find past sock adventures I discovered when I made the first one of the pair…2011! We were taking Aimee to Uni when I made the first sock and in the time it’s taken for me not to finish the second one she’s graduated and is well on the way to being a qualified teacher! Oh dear…

Anyway, not only has this lone sock been matched with it pair, but I whizzed out for more yarn when I was feeling better and I’ve just completed a second pair.   To add to the mix my friend Kit arrived with a little cheer up bag containing…pink and green socks, so I’m well on the way to replacing all the ones which have succumbed over the years to the four legged sausage shaped ‘moth’ which makes holes in soft furnishing and garments willy nilly.

mini dachshund asleep

The Planet Penny Moth!

...and the socks he has chewed!

…and the socks he has chewed!

So what’s so good about knitting socks?

Well, the little pattern I use is probably the most basic one you can find, it came free with a ball of sock yarn a while ago.  And when you’ve used it a few times it sort of lodges in your head, and you can trundle away, following the plot of Broadchurch or The Killing (with subtitles) without getting flustered.

It’s a bit fiddly to start off with, casting on 60 stitches and dividing them between three DP needles and getting that first rib row set up, but then you are off.  Once the rib is done you’ve got rows and rows of straight knitting, and because you are in the round, every row is a knit row and you still get stocking stitch!

I like to use the self striping sock yarn because seeing what colour is coming next gives you something to aim for, ‘I’ll just finish the blue, or the pink, or the green’…

knitting socks - yarn

Turning the heel is an event, (you should have seen the first one I ever did!) but once you see the logic of where you are going it’s a little challenge in the middle of the project to keep you on your toes. and then you are off again, round and round until the toe arrives, a simple little decrease which makes an elegant seam each side.

And then…the wonder that is Kitchener Stitch!  It’s a fabby way to end your sock, weaving in and out of the stitches with your needle to make new knitting stitches so you can’t see the join.  It took me ages to get to grips with it so don’t shudder and turn away at this point, it can be done, believe me.  I can be heard muttering ‘Front – Purl off, Knit. Back – Knit off, Purl’ a little mantra to keep me on the straight and narrow.

And then, when you’ve finished, and tenderly pressed them (about the only time I like to get the ironing board out!) you’ve got something warm and delightful to enjoy yourself or to give as a very special present.  What a joy!

If you feel like joining in with a little relaxing sock knitting therapy one of my favourite online ports of call is The Sock Yarn Shop, where the most difficult thing is choosing! This what I’m hankering after at the moment…

sock yarn knittingIt’s like a spring sunrise, something to dream about just at the moment!

Are you a sock knitting fan, or have I inspired you to have a go?  I do hope so… If you are looking for some help, the Sock Yarn Shop recommends this set of tutorials.

I’ll be back soon with Happy Friday.  I’m going to try and get it posted on Thursday evening to give more people a chance to join in so look out your happy photos or jolly moments and get ready to link up…see you soon…x

 

Tiptoeing Round the Corner….

…waving a sock.  Hello!   Can I join in?  I know it’s Handmade Monday and I know it’s a bit late and …I only have – a sock.  Just the one.  And yes, actually, it isn’t quite finished…. but I’ve been awfully busy and I really really want to join in…Is it ok? Hmmm?

It has been a busy weekend, so I hope you’ll forgive my lack of productivity!  We headed off to London town in the white van, filled with all Aimee’s worldly goods…

No kitchen sink, but there was a bongo drum and a unicycle….

Her mother’s daughter, apparently…

We had things to deliver to the South Coast too, so more family was visited and I managed a visit to a favourite shop for curtain fabric where the lady of the shop had her own brand of fabulousness …

and a great blog too…Pop along and say hello!

Higgins didn’t want to be a  White Van Dog, so he went to the Norfolk coast for a little break.

Oooh, these sand dunes are a bit steep...

 

...but this wet sand is nice and cool....

...and the sea is even cooler on the tum....

...and it's nice to have a sunny patch to dry off in...

Normal service will be resumed as soon as possible

The Opposite of Creativity….

This is the invalid, recovering from the his sore paw… doesn’t he look sweet?  We went to the vet for a check up and he was fine, but had probably turned awkwardly and strained a muscle.  So it was pain killers, and rest.  The resting done on the sofa with me, on a special cushion.

I know, I know, we’ve had a cushion problem before, but I thought he’d grown out of it, and I’d unearthed this Kaffe Fassett one I made a few years ago because I was bored with the beige (beige? Me?) corduroy ones which he hasn’t damaged…AT ALL…

But I just took my eye off him for a moment…

and…

NOOOOO…..

Yes…

You’ll be pleased to know the healing vibes sent his way by so many of you have worked well, and he is now fine.  Thank you SO much…He really doesn’t deserve it…

But this is Handmade Monday, so I’m being creative…

I’ve finished the second snood

It’s knitted on needles much larger than the size recommended, which gives it a good drape, but you can see looks a little wobbly.  Really wouldn’t work on something requiring some structure, but works for this…

It might be quite warm still, but I have a feeling I will be really glad to have this in a few weeks time.

The birthday socks are finished, and ready to be wrapped up for the weekend.

And I have a new ball of sock wool…

…this time to make a pair for myself as the hand knitted socks that haven’t worn out at the heels seem to have inexplicable small holes in unexplained places. This comes of living with the world biggest moth…

Meanwhile I have been crocheting again, this time to make a jolly cafetiere cover for my daughter, who leaves for London at the end of the week.  She really doesn’t do mornings, so something to gee her up with a caffeine fix and a smile is called for before setting off for lectures.

It started off looking quite minimalist…

…but not for long.

And I am going sneak in the C*******s thing I’ve been working on, you can look the other way if you like!

I now have to do a little creative thinking about cushion repairs, wish me luck!

There have been lots of responses to the draw, which is still running.  If you haven’t entered yet please do, that cow needs her name! Part of the prize is a Julie Arkell book about her wonderful and slightly surreal papier mache creations. She seems not to have a web presence herself but this site will give you a flavour of her work.  Amazon currently don’t have copies of the book in stock, and it seems difficult to find it on line, so this is a great chance to win a copy.  Don’t forget to pop over to Ist Unique Gifts for the Handmade Monday links to enjoy what else is going on.

Also, there is still time to vote for Planet Penny in the Dorset Cereals Little Blog award.  It’s been doing pretty well, but there’s strong competition, so every vote counts.  A girl needs an Egg Cup!

Flapping About!

Hello, Hello, I’m home and doing what I always do, too many photos, so much to say don’t know where to start…..flap, flap, run round in circles…….

BREATHE……….

…..and out….

Phew, that’s better….

We had a wonderful few days away in East Sussex, the weather was fab, we had time with the family and Higgins is still trying to catch up with his sleep!   He had boys to look after, and he couldn’t possibly do his usual napping in a sunshiney place in case something good happened and he missed it.  Also, he had a Very Important Job to do as an Artist’s Model, and he kept forgetting which was his best side…and if you’d like to see all the sides, you’ll find them here

Until very recently Sussex and Kent were counties I travelled through on the way to the ferry, and I just got tantalising glimpses of interesting places in the mad dash to the port.  It’s been lovely to have a reason to visit and explore, and you can catch up on some of the places we’ve been in these posts.

We visited Hastings Old Town on the first morning where the locals are fairly laid back…

…or a little scary…

…but the shops were very pretty…

…and they had the flags out for us…

well, I say flags…

 

of course not all of us are really into shopping…

I’m not going to gallop through everything in one session, we’ll all lose the will to live –  so the trip to Dungeness will be in the next post!

I did manage to get the knitting out, and I’ve finished the birthday socks

…and I’ve been experimenting with the lovely cuddly yarn I showed you before to make a sort of cosy collar.

It’s like a scarf without trailing ends.  I’ve knitted it on circular needles and it’s just five rows of knit and five rows  purl to give the ridged effect.  I didn’t use all the yarn, I was being impatient, so I’m going to put it back on the needles to make it longer as the ridges make it scrunch up quite a lot.  I’m going to experiment some more as I think it would be great with more stitches so it can be looped twice round the neck, or just adding an extra ball of wool so it’s long enough to pull up like a hood.  I’ve a feeling I shall be fighting my daughter for this one!

Once again I’m linking this to the lovely Wendy of 1st Unique Gifts and  Handmade Monday.  Do go over and say hello and find all the links to other crafty blogs.

I’m being particularly ‘handmade’ this Monday too. I was very excited last week to find out I have been selected to take part in the UK Handmade Showcase, in the ‘Wonders of Wool’.

Have a lovely week, I’ll be back very soon…x

 

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