Let's Talk About Socks
After some intelligence gathering (i.e., anonymous email), I determined that she would prefer a light, pretty, perhaps even lacy pattern. So I turned to Sensational Knitted Socks looking for a lace pattern that incorporated plenty of smooth stockinette areas to show off the variegation. I started a pair of Ribbed Lace, and then because I did not RTFP (sound familiar, Jess?), I did not realize that it was basically an entire sock in K1, P1 rib, with some yarnovers and decreases thrown in every few rounds. The idea of this nearly made blood come out of my eyes. Rip, rip, rip. I also considered the Oriel Lace socks, but after starting them, didn't think I could make the yarn, gauge, stitch pattern and size all work out. Back to the frog pond we go.
Then, I was looking through the new Rebecca magazine, and thought of adapting the lace pattern from the black sweater for the socks. That would have been cool, but sadly, after trying it out, I realized the socks would be too small and bigger needles would have resulted in a floppy fabric. Rip again.
Next stop for pattern inspiration -- the Vogue Knitting Stitchionary. (This is a great book with beautiful stitch patterns, but where are the charts?!) I found a stitch pattern that would fit perfectly with the number of stitches I believed I needed, with my gauge to make the right size. It's an eyelet diamonds pattern, which I changed a little to eliminate an annoying twist that requires not one but two cable needles. I'm knitting happily along and get this far ... when I realize that something is very, very wrong.
That's right, it's nearly five inches wide. Considering that she said her foot is nine inches around, this is not going to work. I mean, I'm no expert, but even I know that positive ease is a Very Bad Idea for Socks. So, including the little gauge swatches I did, I will have frogged this yarn about five or six times now. I'd just cut it out, but her feet are long enough that I don't really have yarn to spare.
Conclusions: I am sticking with this eyelet diamond pattern, because I like it and I think it is light and lacy without being too much. I am going to use the other Lorna's Laces -- the Seaside -- because it matches the pattern better and hasn't been frogged to death. I scaled down the pattern to a smaller number of stitches, but I suppose I could try knitting the same number of stitches on size 0 needles -- these are size 1s. Comments are welcome.
A postscript: Thanks everyone for the nice comments about my Backyard Leaves scarf. If you have feared this pattern, don't! You can do it!