Monday, October 25, 2010

Going in Circles

I thought better of my plan to teach myself to knit two socks on one circular needle and decided maybe I'd better try one sock on a circular needle first. Having already had the benefit of knowing how to use a magic loop, it was a piece of cake to apply it to a sock. The only thing I really had to figure out was how to redistibute the stitches for the gusset. Easy enough, and I finished this little toddler sock with only the toe left to finish.

Then I was ready to try two socks on one circular. I had no trouble with the concept; but even with a 40" circular, I struggled with the stitches stretching between the two halves of the socks. I kept wishing I had, like, a 60" circular. After a couple of rounds I decided I didn't like this method, so I ripped it all out. Subsequently I found out at the knit shop that there actually is a 47" circular available, which the store rep preferred also for this method.

This morning I decided I'd try two socks on two circular needles. I spent most of the morning being confused as hell. I eventually figured out how to get the stitches for the two socks on the needles and divided correctly, but after that it was all downhill. I considered the possibility that perhaps I should be using the needles specified in the book, which were 16" and 24" long, instead of the two 40" needles I was using. When all else fails, it's probably a good idea to follow the directions.

So I hopped in the car, drove down to Auburn, picked up the correct needles, a couple more skeins of yarn, a book on sweaters, and drove back home.

It didn't get better with the new needles. After ripping everything out twice more, I finally cracked the code late in the afternoon. I finally realized I was missing one particularly illuminating piece of information in the directions, and now I am well on my way. At least until I get to the heel.

I don't know if I'll like this last method any better, but the gal at the knit shop convinced me I should give both methods a fair chance before I abandon them. At the very least, I probably wouldn't go back to double pointed needles again--I'd switch to one sock on one circular.

I think tonight, I need to quilt something.


Denise said...

Sounds waaaayyyyy to confusing for me, I think I'll stick with quilting, LOL.

The little sock does look cute!

Julie Fukuda said...

Oh my, now you are getting way too complicated. I've thought of knitting two socks together on separate sets of needles, one from the outside of the ball and one from the inside so that they ended up the same length. Finally I gave up and resorted to counting. If I end up with leftovers hopefully it won't be too much and if I run short, toes of a different color.

Sheila said...

I appreciate your honest appraisal of the method in the 2nd book there! I bought both the Gillingham books earlier in the summer, and they've been my 'bathroom reading' for the past couple of weeks, but I haven't tried it yet. One of those things you just have to do and not just read about I guess? So, is the info that helped you crack the code actually in the book? I do prefer toe-up, but think I'll try the top-down for the two-at-once... at least the first time!

I will say the directions in the 2nd book for the Magic Cast-on turned on a lightbulb for me this week and it finally worked (albeit one sock at a time).

Love your Power of Ten & 6Q ideas for tackling quilting.

Judy S. said...

Interesting account, Sue. Did you wind your yarn in two balls also? How do you keep the two balls untangled? I've tried the 2 circs also and been frustrated. Can you tell? LOL

imquilternity said...

I had the very same experience and have decided that I like one sock at a time, Magic Loop method! Sounds like you and I think alike. lol

Beth said...

Have you looked for YouTube videos for help? I really like those. Look for something from Interweave. I've really enjoyed Cat Borhdi's videos although I don't know if she has one on this particular method. Good luck, I think with your persistence you will get it, whether you will like it is another matter! LOL