Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Mad for Fair Isle Batik Style Socks pattern now available

This pattern includes instructions for knitting the sock top-down and toe-up, and uses a short-row heel. Charts for the ankle and foot motifs also included.

Getting good tension while color-stranding takes practice. Elizabeth Zimmerman says in Knitting Without Tears that you can never strand too loosely. After stranding loosely and blocking, the pictured socks fit a US size 8 foot. If a smaller or larger size is needed, I've included in the pattern where to add stitches or what to cut out. Going up or down in needle size is also an option.

If out of practice or inexperienced at color-stranding, take a look at these links for help:

Knitty article on color-stranding

Knitting in Color blog by Nanette Blanchard

This pattern was used in Sock Madness 2007. The organizers requested a fair isle pattern, but I decided to go to southern isles for inspiration. The motifs are based on batik cloth my mother brought back with her from a trip to Indonesia.

$3.25 for this pattern in pdf format

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Mad Color Weave pattern now available

ERRATA: Work the following row once at the end of the heel flap before beginning to turn the heel. By working this, you'll end up on the right side, ready for the next section.
Row [WS]: S1, p1, k1, p2, k2, p(18, 22, 26, 30), p1, k2, p2, k1, p2.

10/05/07: To correct the math in the toe decrease instructions:
Decrease on every odd-numbered round for 12 (14, 16, 18) rounds; then decrease every round for 4 (5, 6, 7) rounds.
Finally, graft the last 9 sts on the top with the 9 sts on the bottom.

I adapted a diagonal weave pattern from Barbara Walker for the weave stitch panels. Two twist stitch cables run down either side of the ankle. One cable continues down the heel flap, the other down the side of the foot.

I chose weave stitch because I wanted to highlight the colors in a variegated yarn. But try this in a solid color and the stitch pattern itself pops.

This pattern contains written directions and a chart. Four sizes are provided; directions for making additional sizes are included.

This submission to Sock Madness 2007 received corrections and feedback from Hillary, one of the Sock Madness originators, and the competitors themselves. Thanks go to them for helping me to clarify and clean this pattern up for anyone else out there who'd like it.

Click here to download a free pdf of the pattern.
(PDF corrected to include above errata.)

Monday, February 26, 2007



First I thought it was Great Adirondack yarns, then I thought it was Kona Superwash, Hand Dyed by Woolbearers, but I'm not sure now.
3.75mm / US 5 needles

Used short rows to make side ruffles – didn't want to pick up sts afterward to make edge ruffles. This was the very last skein of yarn I bought at Stitches East 2006, and the first skein from that shopping extravaganza that I've used. When I saw it, I adored the feel and colors. Now I'm glad I was so weak!

And I learned something new – blocking can make a difference. Uh-huh, late to the game as usual (and you have no idea how apt that phrase is!). It's not that I didn't know blocking's importance, and that I've never blocked before. But it sure seems I haven't – maybe I've been blocking the wrong yarns and stitch patterns.

I finished this garter stitch scarf, wondering if it was too dense. After soaking and then drying flat on the ironing board, the garter stitch relaxed and it's now perfect.

We had more snow here yesterday and I was thrilled – winter's sticking around just so I can wear my scarf! So sorry if you're waiting for spring cotton tanks, I'll let go of winter soon enough.

Click here to download a free pdf of the pattern.

Click here for a German translation of the pattern on a German Web site. Thanks go to Angela Muhlpfordt for the translation.

Note: kf&b = knit into the front and then the back of one stitch (increases 1 stitch OR creates 2 stitches out of 1)
CO 90 sts. [8 + 74 + 8]

Knit 16 rows.

Next row: k8, k2tog * 37 , k8. [8 + 37 + 8]

Repeat the following 7 rows for the length of the scarf:
Row 1: Knit all sts, turn.
Row 2: K4, turn.
Row 3: YO, k4, turn.
Row 4: K4, k2tog (yo and next st), k3, turn.
Row 5: YO, k8, turn.
Row 6: K8, k2tog (yo and next st), knit to the end of the row.
Row 7: Knit all sts, turn.

Next row: k8, kf&b * 37, k8. [8 + 74 + 8]

Knit 16 rows.

BO all 90 sts.