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Tuesday, March 07, 2006

MG: slump

i'm afraid Kitty Kitty and i are suffering from post-olympic blues. potential projects look lackluster, and nothing seems quite exciting enough. even our usual admire-this-FO, drool-over-that-yarn, gawk-at-this-pattern sessions over IM are wilted and uninspired.

my norwegian stockings comfort me a little. i've settled on a yarnhand setup that pleases me. the main color sits towards my fingertip, the constrast color towards my palm; i like to pick the MC over the CC.

this gusset heel has been frogged many times, so many i've lost count--at least a half dozen. many factors involved: my very first gusset heel; color pattern alteration in the heel flap; sizing for my particular ankles and feet.

even after good advice from Kitty Kitty, the gusset pick-up is full of gaps. it's the best version so far but still substandard. any gusset heel wisdom for me?

two unresolvable issues. one, i moved the "seam" to the inner leg rather than the back by continuing directly from the leg to the heel flap. this is a mistake. breaking the yarn permits better control over tension. two, the slipped stitch edge is now hopelessly stretched. i think i will finish the foot for now to test the toe construction. perhaps i will knit the mate first then reknit this.

Mellowtrouble Andrea came for a visit last week. we perused Carolina Homespun and Lacis together. we spun. we knit. we ate a lot. it was our first meeting face to face and also my first experience meeting a fellow knitblogger. random thoughts:

in addition to owning a delightful appreciation for knitting and spinning, Andrea is thoughtful, fun, and very simply a good person. well, you know this from her blog. knitblogging enables us to defy geographical distance and find kindred spirits.

it's strange and wonderful to feel at ease with someone who is sitting on your bed and spinning on your wheel, someone you just met that morning. blog posts and email correspondences do allow us to know each other. there is honesty and revelation in the words we write, perhaps surpassing the small-talk we pad ourselves with in the company of acquaintances.

there is nothing quite like seeing the creations of another knitter/spinner and watching them in action. i saw and touched Andrea's yarn and lace leaf sweater and fair isle bag in person (all beautiful). they inspired and enriched me. and i learned a more efficient hand position for Navajo plying just by watching her ply.


  1. Your stocking looks beautiful, despite any issues with the heel. I ran into the same issue as you picking up stitches without gaps. I ended up picking up from the row of stitches behind the slip stitches. I'm not sure if this is a knitters no-no, but it provided much more structure and no gaps (except a small one at the end of the line of stitches, which I closed up when sewing the ends in). Good luck!

  2. i don't know about the gusset heel but i'd say start the second pair and let your mind kinda simmer on the heel for a bit and i'm sure some good idea/fix will pop up. to my eyes it looks great, except for that one stretched stitch..

    and kindred spirits! absolutely and vice versa. i keep thinking about that delicious asiago bread and the vietnemese lunch and oh! so great. it passed so quickly, though, i'll just have to visit again at some point ;) and you to l.a.! it's fun here, promise.

  3. 'Fraid I know nothing about gusset heels as yet, but your socks looks fairly impressive to me. I think starting sock two seems good to avoid being plunged into second sock syndrome, and maybe you'll work out the answer to your questions as you knit it - or if you have to mess around with it at least the negative knitting will be spread between two feet! ;)

    I really liked your musings on knitbloggers. When I first started knitting I thought blogging was weird, but less than a year on I feel privileged to have made some friends on the other side of the atlantic, whom I may never meet but grow closer to with every post. 'Strange and wonderful' indeed.

  4. I use to have this problem as well when I did a colourwork sock. What I ended up having to do is leave the section where I was picking up stitches as a solid colour so I had no back loops of other colours to pull. I ended up actually breaking the yarn so that there was no odd pulling of the back loops. This method worked perfectly for me, I think there is just some inherent odd pulling when you are dealing with floats on the back.

    On the flip side the little old woman who I took lessons from who had knit about a thousand of these socks corrected this problem by just going through and using heavy, and I mean heavy reinforcement threads and straightened up all wholes and wonkie stitches this way.


  5. hi Geannie, thanks for all the kind comments you left and the gusset heel fixes.

    kind of nice to know it's not just me with colorwork gusset heel trouble. i may have to rethink the color pattern of the heel flap. thanks again!