For a long time, I've been designing my own socks, more or less. I learned Queen Kahuna's
toe-up sock method shortly after her book came out and began making patterned toe-up socks with gussets, yum! When Cat Bordhi's book New Pathways for Sock Knitters
came out, I devoured that one, too, with its innovative ideas about where you could put gussets and how to handle those increases in ways that would make socks more both more interesting and fun to knit. Cookie A's book Sock Innovation
is a great resource as well, though I really do prefer designing and knitting toe-up socks. To me, they're just more fun. For various styles and techniques, you can't beat resources like Charlene Schurch's Sensational Socks
and More Sensational Socks,
though the patterns are not as innovative as the things I really love to knit. Most of us who knit socks are enamoured of one or two designers who really know what they're doing and amaze us with the stuff they do. If you're on Ravelry, just have a look round the pattern section to see who's designing socks right now and what they look like.
Today, I've been working on sock designs. Now, those of you who don't knit may find it odd to realise that there are whole books worth of sock designs and whole knitting designers who design socks exclusively, but I'm sure you'll catch up. ;)
Without the aid of a professional-level charting program (and those of you who'd like to pitch in and get me a fabulous Christmas gift can take a look at Knit Visualizer
if you're curious as to what I'm talking about when I say professional-level charting program), I design mostly on paper or in Knitting Wizard,
which is very cool but nowhere near as intuitive as the demo of Knit Visualizer I have tried.
So, today I tried something different. I cast on sixteen stitches and considered the outside six to be just a garter stitch border. Then, I just started knitting a sock top, on the flat. I used inexpensive solid colour sock wool from Lang (well, OK, it was $7US for 50g, but trust me; that's less expensive than the beautiful stuff I'm really designing for). I played around with various stitch patterns, mostly twisted stitch patterns today, with a little bit of lacework in the mix.
It was fun! And I'll be doing some more of it tonight. I've ripped out this afternoon's work as just a scratch exercise, so I don't have any photographs to show you. Some of you have seen the first sock I designed for this project. Let me know if you have a favourite look for a lacey sock or a design with lots of travelling stitches that you like? And if the poem 'anyone lived in a pretty how town' gives you any inspiration at all, let me know that, too.
I won't rip the next one out before photographing it, promise.