On stranded knitting

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So I just finished a pair of socks in four days. Can anyone remember the last time I did that? I certainly can’t. Pretty exciting.

I actually did these socks because I wanted to have something two colour to work on instead of just plain socks, and then decided to use them as a sampler to compare the differences in which colour is held in which hand. (I don’t know if this would apply were I knitting with them both in one hand.)

These are the Sweden socks from Knitted Socks around the World (I love that book. So much colourwork, so much style. Excellent excellent book, if you like elegant and classic stranded knitting.) One sock was knit with the purple in left hand, one with the purple in right. I’m usually a right handed knitter.

Can you tell?

See, if you look at that photo, you should notice the sock on the left has less definition and looks overall a little more stringy than the one on the right. This is because it’s pretty important that your background colour be carried in your more dominant hand; your dominant hand is more familiar with knitting and tension, and so will usually have a tighter tension than the non-dominant one. The foreground/design colour should be in that hand instead, so that it fills up and allows the lines to look less pixelated.

Even just looking at them on my feet kind of bugs me, but I’m not going to forget which one is meant to go in which hand anymore.

See, I needed a refresher before I started to knit on the Phoenix cardigan again (!!!), what with not wanting the same mistake again. And it’s served me well–the tiny bit of a design I can see is looking much smoother even prior to blocking.

Also, these have the cutest little picot edge. The way the sock is made (provisional cast on, toe after everything else, picot sewn down) meant that I had absolutely nothing besides blocking to do when I finished a sock. Everything had already been secured while I was working on it, or by the steps that I had to do. I love a sock that is actually done when I’m done.

The short row heels (now that I finally figured out that woman’s version) are actually really nice, and I probably will also do short rows the way she shows them in the book.

All in all, lovely socks and a lovely reminder of the importance of what colour is in which hand.

Also, to explain why I needed yet more edge yarn, and thus why I made that video:

I’m on row 13 now. (I haven’t marked row 12, it was a purlback, and I didn’t have enough yarn or the chart nearby when I finished it to go onto row 13). Row 13 of the top chart. There’s another 16 rows for the bottom chart.

I spun up 50 yards of white fluffy yarn, thinking surely that would be enough to edge my shawl.

WELP. Back to the spinning wheel. That’s the butterfly I start all hand wound balls with–maybe a yard. I’ve finished the bobbin I was on in the video, and hopefully will get the second done today. I really want this shawl šŸ˜¦

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