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Finishing Things

I swore I did not have anything to finish. I was wrong.

tinysocks16.jpgI crocheted a colorful edging on the “hug” wrap that I made for one toddler I love. She loves color maybe more than me. It did not have to be a Christmas gift but it will be, just because of when I finished.

We went to Grand Rapids for a family function on Brian’s side. He drove and I knit. I finished an aran-weight sock today that I mostly knit yesterday.

I could knit these without looking, in the dark, in the car. There were other things I wanted to knit but they just would not work in a social setting and in the car later.

It will be no hassle to finish the other relatively soon. It’s washable alpaca/wool, and they will be much loved winter socks, very soon. I buy shoes to handle fat socks so I will be able to wear them any day I like.

I also made a handful of those mini-socks I said I’d make as ornament gifts, over the last week or two. I need to mail some off which I have not done yet, but these friends do not keep score over dates. I got in a focus on the socklets and kept going. I knit two turquoise ones and made them into earrings. They are wild, and they spin and rotate and kick my neck a bit, but I love them just the way they are.

And then I got going even smaller. I knit with darning/reinforcement thread, on size 000 US/ 1.5mm needles, a sock with a circumference of 12 stitches. These ended up being knit at 12 stitches per inch, my personal best (I’ve done 10 st/in before, but the difference between 10 and 12 is significant).

The hassle with the tiny socks is the needles. My needles are about 8 inches/ 20cm long. The sock measures half an inch across. The needles are metal so that they will not break. That means they are relatively heavy. And then at times I had three stitches on one long needle. If you breathe wrong, this means the needles fall on the floor and you have live stitches hanging out in the air for a breeze, stitches that are merely 1.5mm in size. I wear bifocals, and without a lot of light I can not see these stitches well enough to pick them back up.

I even had to do a different heel for the tiniest socklet. Normally I make a heel flap which requires picking up stitches on the sides, or I make an afterthought heel sock which requires picking up lots of stitches and which does not flatten out well when not on a foot, anyway.

I went to Rae’s shop and put myself at her mercy… she sometimes does what are called “short row” heels which look like the heels on commercially manufactured socks. I begged her to tell me how to turn a heel based on six stitches, in a short row fashion. She wrote little instructions on a tiny paper and this is my heel-turning bible for the tiniest socks.

And I listened to Rae, knit the way i was told, made a cute heel without having to pick up stitches, and finished my tiny sockie. So fun!

Oh… while I was knitting these, I was wearing a sweater with long fat wooly cuffs that were a bit too long. So what happened is that the ends of the too-long needles would accidentally stick themselves in my cuffs. And I’d move, and the cuff would grab on (after all the wool is more stretchy than the nylon I was knitting with, and more fibers were grabbing it on the sweater cuff than the sock). And, you guessed it, the stitches would be live again.

Next time I knit a tiniest sock I will wear a turtleneck only, with tightly-fitting cuffs, and if I’m cold I’ll sit on the heat vent or wear a good shawl that doesn’t reach down to my hands.

But aren’t they just as cute as a button??? I’m thrilled.

I will close with a photo that makes me smile. This is a doll scarf knit by an elementary-aged girl in my CityKidz Knit program. This girl just loves to knit. Unfortunately, sometimes my room is full of distractions. The scarf was full of very lovely short rows and seven dropped stitches (some of which are being held with safety pins and split stitch markers in this shot).

I repaired the drops for her, and will do my best to get to her house tomorrow and deliver it. I had planned to send it in the mail but misplaced the lovely piece long enough to make that not an option. Fortunately they do not live too far from me so I may venture out and make a kid smile.


2 Responses to “Finishing Things”

  1. mac+ Says:

    Oh my goodness! You WERE a knitting diva yesterday! Here in Chicago, where the winds were blowing at about 40 mph, driving snow and very, VERY cold, I stayed indoors. And finished the gigantic Ian socks! And cast on for a new sock, this time with silver beads just below the ribbing. Why the silver beads???? Well – err – because I could!

    Blessed Christmas to all!


  2. Chelle Says:

    Those little socks are darling! Nice work. I bet they are addictive. I was into making those a couple of years ago, and then I made a minature earring pair to wear to Stitches Midwest last summer. That was so much fun. My mom and I both made them on 0000 needles and we wore them in Chicago. I should get those out again and wear them. Only made a couple of pairs so far but would like to make more.