Sunday, January 25, 2009

Conquering a rogue sock

My knitting has been going no where as of late.  Well, not exactly no where.  In truth, it's been going backwards a lot.

What is it that make one little sock so damned hard to knit?  The first sock was a charmer.  It went swimmingly.  Really quickly.  Fits like a dream. 

The pattern is well written and the yarn (despite my initial battles with untangling it's 400 yds) lovely to work with so it makes a gal wonder what could go wrong?

Apparently my brain and the sudden loss of any ability to follow simple directions.

Back in October I cast on one night at SnB for the second sock of my Soctoberfest Mystery KAL sock.  I was excited.  I figured within two or three weeks I would be proudly wearing a new pair of socks.  But something went terribly wrong.  It took me the whole evening to cast on and do a couple of rows.  I couldn't count properly.  I had to cast on repeatedly before I managed to get all 64 stitches cast on.  Then I twisted my stitches in the round so I had a quasi-mobius-esque type cuff.  Sadly it all came out again.  Finally conquered the cast on and thought I was off to the races.

I was wrong.

I knit the cuff and then compared it with my beautiful first sock.  Something was amiss.  The middle section was huge.  Not just too long, but somehow too wide.  But I decided I could ignore it.  Telling myself, no one's going to see the cuff anyways.  

I took a break from the sock until after Christmas and then decided it was time to finish it.  So I plugged away on the second clue which is the patterned leg.  50 rows into the chart and somewhat alarmed that something seemed a little off, I thought I'd check the instructions to find out how many rows I repeated on the chart the second time.  Much to my horror, it clearly said "Repeat rows 1-32 of the chart once.  Repeat rows 1-16 one more time."  Rows 1-32?  My chart had 64 rows.  

Then it hit me.  I was knitting the foot chart.  Not the leg.  So somewhat disheartened, I began to frog.  All the way back it went to the cuff.  And I started again.  Regaining my confidence with each row I did I began once again to envision proudly wearing my pretty socks.  I finished the first 32 rows of the chart and stopped to admire my handiwork.  I should mention I did think, about 16 rows earlier that something looked a touch off, but I was not going to be stopped in my quest to conquer the second sock.  It was then that the gods of cursed socks struck me well and truly down.  

I had not marked my pattern the last time I'd stopped working on it, and blithely had resumed where I thought I had been instead of carefully inspecting exactly which row I had finished at.  Back to the frog pond I went.  My heart heavy and my mind reeling with the ridiculousness of it all.   How hard had it become for me to follow directions?  Was I that lost in my own world that the simplest of tasks could become so daunting?

I am very pleased to say though, this little tale of woe has a happy ending after all.  Well so far anyways.

Yesterday I picked up knitting and chart with much trepidation.  I carefully examined where I should begin knitting, took a deep breath and began.  I zipped through the remainder of the 32 rows, and continued on with rows 1 - 13.  I had a glimmer of hope that I was on my way to conquering the rogue sock when I inspected my knitting and saw that it was as it should be.  This morning saw the completion of row 14-16, the eye of partridge heel flap, and blessedly the turning of the heel with no disasters.

I know it's early days, but I am feeling brave enough to say that I declare my rogue second sock to have admitted defeat in the presence of my knitting determination.  I shall have a nice new pair of socks after all.

Wish me luck on that foot chart.  Really I've already had practice doing it twice before, so it should be a piece of cake... right?  Next post I do I am determined to have a picture of my finished pair of socks to show you.

Until then, as I said, wish me luck and I hope you're having much more success in your knitting endeavors than I have been lately!

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