Tag Archive | handknit socks

Bye, FlexiFlips

I’m making progress on my FlexiFlip sock, but I can’t call it that anymore. I made it a little over halfway through the foot before giving up. I really wanted to make it through the whole sock, to give the needles a fair shot. They felt super awkward at first, then I kind of got used to them, then once I got past the heel and into the gusset/foot, it got awkward again. Well, more uncomfortable than awkward. Maybe I was doing something weird, but knitting with them made my hands feel tight and cramped, and it hurt to knit very long. I found that I was dreading knitting them just because of the needles, and that’s never okay. One should not dread her knitting! So the sock has been transferred to my favorite bamboo DPNs and I am much happier with it. Anyone want a set of size 1 FlexiFlips??


We had a day-trip on Monday, with about four hours in the car, and I made good progress on my Textured Pullover, even if I did get super bored of knitting it. I was smart and wove in all the other ends as I finished each section, so finishing will be quick. I did make a wee error, but I think it’ll be fine. As I read the pattern again for the second sleeve, I realized there were supposed to be decrease rounds all through the sleeve that I completely missed. So my sleeves won’t taper. Oh well. I’m totally okay with that.


Since taking this photo, I’ve made it over halfway through the second sleeve and just need to find the motivation to power through the rest. I think I can, I think I can, I think I can! I just need a good movie marathon to distract me. How do you motivate yourself to finish a lingering WIP?

The best news of the week is that the girl is now all done with her auditions for college! Now we wait for two more result emails, and final talent scholarship offers (fingers crossed) and then it’ll be decision time. I think we’ll all be relieved when it’s all said and done and we can focus on moving forward.

Updates on…everything

I don’t have a FO to share today. I can share some progress on my sock, my FlexiFlip sock. It’s going well. I’m getting used to the needles and they’re not feeling as unwieldy as they did at first. They’re still not as fast as DPNs for me but I think I’ll get there pretty quick. I am loving this yarn. The colors are fun, and even though the color changes are different than I was expecting, I like it a lot. I mean, look how cool the heel turned out!


It’s smooth and slick, almost slippery, from the polyester, and maybe you’d think acrylic/poly sock yarn, what is she thinking? But no, seriously, it feels good, kind of cool (literally). It’s a nice switch from the wool/nylon yarn, though I’m sure that’ll always be my primary sock yarn blend. And it’ll make lovely spring/fall socks, I think. So yeah, these are zipping along.

My sweater, however, is not zipping along. I’ve got most of one sleeve done and I’m trying to work on it at night, but it’s boring and I keep having to adjust it as I go around the little sleeve and I’m ready for it to be done so I can wear it. We’re taking one more short road trip on Monday for the last music school audition, so I’ll take that and only that with me and force myself to work on it.

Edward went to the shop and spent a few days there getting a new front bumper and some new shields or something, and it went through my insurance so I only had to pay the deductible. We timed it out so that they could work on it while I was out of town with the girl last weekend, and then the husband and I carpooled on Monday, so I didn’t even have to pay for a rental car. So overall that whole experience was much better than I was expecting, and they did a fantastic job and even detailed him perfectly so that he looks almost brand-new and I love him.


Grace has adjusted wonderfully to her meds for Addison’s disease. I even gave her the injection myself last month! And we were able to lower her steroid dose so she’s not quite as thirsty and ravenous as she was at first. Her energy level is up and she’s very frisky and loves to play with Duncan again. She and Duncan are buddies; Jack kind of gets left out but also I think he feels threatened by Duncan at times. He’s usually pretty happy to hang out with his people while the other two go nuts.


Duncan hasn’t gone into any trouble lately (knock on wood) and keeping them in the kitchen when we’re gone seems to be working well. I don’t love it, but it’ll work until Duncan gets a little older and hopefully outgrows his destructive tendencies.


The girl has received acceptance letters from two of her four schools and I am delighted and super proud of her. We’re still waiting for a decision from one school and like I said, we have the last audition Monday, so we probably won’t have a final decision for another few weeks. We’re very lucky that she’s received automatic academic scholarship offers from all four schools, and a music scholarship from at least one, but even with those, and her college savings account, there’s still a lot of financial ground to make up. It’s scary, and it’s not even my college life! But we so want her to have a great experience, to have the education and flute professor and opportunities that she wants to have. I’m excited for everything that is ahead for her.

At the same time, though, we can’t just pay for it. It’s not feasible, and we can’t take on huge debt for it either. College is scary. If you have kids, start saving yesterday! But we’ll figure it out with a lot of little things. We’ll help a little. She’ll probably have to get a part-time job, a small student loan, and with luck, several of the private scholarships she’s applying for. I know it’ll work out, I really do. But I’m a mother, and a worrier, and those things together are rough when it’s time for college! Life is stressful in my house quite often these days, but there’s still a thread of excitement that comes out just when we need the encouragement.

Sorry this turned out so long; I didn’t mean to ramble. If you’ve made it this far, thanks for your patience!

Addi FlexiFlips: First Attempt

I was super excited to find the Addi FlexiFlips on my road trip. I love knitting socks, and I prefer to use three 5″ DPNs, with a fourth as a working needle. I’ve tried 9″ circs and the tips are just too tiny to be comfortable to hold. I haven’t tried magic loop yet because it looks fiddly and weird and I resist trying strange new things. So these seemed like a great combination of DPNs and circs. As soon as I finished my current sock WIP, I grabbed the FlexiFlips and some sock yarn, and cast on.

Or rather, I tried to cast on. I got the needles on the first needle just fine. Then I split them evenly onto two needles. But then I couldn’t figure out how to join them like I would on DPNs. I fiddled for a little while before turning to the experts on YouTube. I found lots of videos on how to knit with them, but they all showed socks with several rows already started. I couldn’t find any that showed how to cast on and join in the round with these particular needles. But I’m not a quitter, so I knit the first row, slid two completed stitches to the next needle, and joined in the round that way. It was awkward, but I think it worked.

Once I got going, I realized it was going to take a bit to get used to them and to figure out how I wanted the needle not in use to behave. It took several rounds before I decided I liked to bunch the stitches onto the cable portion and bend the back needle so it was kind of out of the way. After that I was off and running!

One of the interesting features of these needles is that that have different tips. On each needle, one tip is more pointy and one is more blunt. That’s very versatile for different preferences…except it means I have to pause and make sure I’ve got the pointy tip each time I switch needles.

So far, these make for slower knitting than my DPNs. I can’t tell for sure yet, but I think my gauge will be a bit looser than with my DPNs, and I’ve got to be more careful about laddering, though I think that’s more about the learning curve and getting comfortable with the needles than with the needle design itself. I do like the metal, and it makes me want some Signature DPNs even more. And I like how they fit neatly in a project bag with no worries of stitches falling off! All in all, I wanted to love them, but I don’t. However, I like them enough that I’ll keep going with them through at least one sock and see if I’m comfortable with them after that.


Have you tried the FlexiFlips yet? What did you think?

This is not ideal

Well, crap. Edward is injured and needs some help. This has been looming for a while; his first injury occurred a few years ago, and things have been building since then. Now, don’t fret too much: Edward is my car. But I am fretting. Most importantly, I love my car and I want Edward to serve me well for at least another couple of years. But also, there’s just never a good time to spend money on car repairs. I think it’s time, though. The biggest one is likely to be the original. Someone who was not me was driving Edward and going too fast when he hit a stretch of unpaved road and the car bottomed out on a manhole, damaging some important metal body work on the bottom. Clearly that wasn’t urgent, because I’ve been driving like that since then.

But that incident also damaged the belly pan, or whatever that protective plastic layer is called, and it came loose once when it didn’t get fastened securely after an oil change. I went back, they refastened it, I went on my way. Then a few weeks ago, I pulled too far forward in a parking space and that pan caught on the concrete stopper thing. When I backed out, the pan came loose, and though I drove immediately to a car place, it was too damaged to save. (In my defense: I didn’t pull forward that far. It was like when you pull forward super slowly until you gently bump the thing. So, I mean, clearly there were already problems, right? Right.) Anyway, I knew I needed to get it replaced, but I put it off. Like you do.

Okay, right. No problem. I parked more carefully after that. Then last night, I took the mother and the boy to dinner, pulled slowly into a parking spot, heard something weird so I put it in reverse and bad things started happening. Apparently there was a bolt/screw thing sticking up out of the concrete stopper thing (don’t you like all my technical jargon?) which caught on the edge of the front bumper, and when I reversed, it started pulling the bumper loose from the car. GREAT. JUST GREAT.

Guys, I swear, I am not a bad driver. I have never had things like this happen before, and just keep happening. Anyway, this feels like a storm of all these little things swirling together to make for a sad little car. I did get the bumper mostly back on, but of course it’s not great. So I’m pretty sure my day off today will include a trip to the body shop to get an estimate of time and cost to get Edward put back together again. Cross your fingers that it doesn’t break the bank. I was hoping to leave him there and steal the girl’s car, because she and the husband are out of town for a music school audition. (They’re in Colorado. I’m totally jealous.) But she took the one car key with her. Of course. So I’ll figure out a plan B and it’ll be fine. It’s fine. It’s all fine.

*deep breath*

After all that, let’s finish with something happy, shall we? Here’s my new sock, started last night. It’s going to be a plain vanilla sock to let the yarn take center stage.


The yarn is Hedgehog Fibres Sock in color Medusa. Love it!

More New Socks

You may remember that I am currently knitting all the socks, and I am making progress on most of them, so I thought I’d share since they’re all so fun. First up is my Madtosh Seaglass green. Love this color so much, but it’s really hard to photograph accurately. It’s even more vivid and gorgeous than these photos suggest. fullsizeoutput_efbThe pattern is called Marpleridge and it’s in Kate Atherley’s Custom Socks to Fit Your Feet. I think it’s especially cool that she gives directions for making it either toe-up or cuff-down! Both the heel turn and gussets are shorter than I’m used to, so I’m eager to see how these feel when I wear them all day. My only modification was a grafted toe.

This yarn is a slightly thicker fingering, so the socks are thick and squishy and I can’t wait to wear them. Unfortunately, I haven’t even started the second sock, so it’ll be a while still.

But here’s the funnest sock ever: Wonder Woman self-striping sock!! fullsizeoutput_ef7The yarn is from Artistic Yarns by Abi and I love it. Love how the stripes worked up, love the little thread of stellina, love that it’s just the tiniest bit crisp but still soft. These are more vanilla socks with a slip-stitch rib heel.

I’m already past the gusset on the second sock, so I’ll be wearing these before you know it. Maybe they’ll give me some superpowers!

FO: Gryffindor Socks

I know I already shared a photo of these socks the other day, but I’m so happy with them that I wanted to share more of the pretty photos I took. The yarn is Biscotte Yarns Bis-Sock Sorcerer’s Scarf in color Griffin. When I was starting the second sock, I thought about trying to match up the stripes, but decided I’d rather just wing it, and it came out in opposite stripes which I found delightful.


It’s a plain 64-stitch vanilla sock. I chose an Eye of Partridge heel because I really like its texture.


After the heel, I knit the foot to 7 1/2″ and finished with a rounded toe.


This yarn was delicious to knit with, so soft. It’ll be interesting to see how it wears compared to stiffer yarns, but I certainly enjoyed knitting it more than the tougher yarns! In fact, I enjoyed it enough that I’ve already got another skein waiting in the wings, the Eagle color for my Ravenclaw socks.


I just want to finish a couple of the socks on the needles before I cast on another one. At least that’s what I’m telling myself today. We’ll see how long my restraint lasts!

Happy Sock-iversary!

I have been knitting socks for a year now! After four years of saying I’d never do it, I’d never learn, they look too hard, I don’t want to put pretty yarn on my FEET…a year ago I made my first pair of socks and got instantly hooked, so hooked that right now socks are the only thing I’m knitting! So hooked that I’ve made socks for other people, and they actually fit! (If the people aren’t lying to me, that is.) In that year, I’ve completed 17 pairs of socks. 8 pairs have been given away, which means 9 have been for me. That surprises me a little; I thought I’d been more selfish about my socks! But the girl has gotten lucky and received some socks I found too itchy to wear after they were done.

My first pair of socks were a simple cuff-down heel flap sock in an aran weight yarn, so they knit up super fast. I had hiccups learning how to turn the heel but overall they were so much simpler than I expected. fullsizeoutput_9e3The most complex socks I’ve made are probably these Spring Forward socks, which are lacy, delicate, and beautiful.IMG_3760And my favorite pair of socks are my first socks with a contrast cuff/heel/toe. They were fun to knit, they fit perfectly and the colors are my favorites. I love these socks so much.fullsizeoutput_b6dAnd my newest pair socks are my freshly finished Gryffindor socks, which I just completed last night. This was my first pair of plain vanilla socks, using what I’ve learned to make a just-right pair of socks.fullsizeoutput_f01

I’ve learned several things in my year of sock knitting: I like snug socks with a tight gauge so I always use size 1 needles. I learned about negative ease and why it’s a good thing in socks. I like a long ribbed cuff, preferably 2″. I like a shorter leg. I like a grafted toe, and I’ve memorized Kitchener stitch. I haven’t explored toe-up socks yet because I’ve been so happy knitting them cuff-down, but I’ll get there. I have plenty of time. It’s been a really fun adventure so far, and I’m looking forward to making a bunch more socks!