With socks, I don't always knit a gauge swatch. I've knit enough socks with enough different yarns that I know what needles to use with which yarns. Fingering weight - US 1 for cast on and first few rows, US 0 for the rest. Standard sock yarns start with a US 1 & US 2. Heavier weight sock yarns like STR Medium, Fixation, and Opal 6 ply need to be knit on US 2 and 3.
Then I started knitting my Dad's socks in Wick a couple months ago. They were huge. There was no way my Dad's foot was that wide. So I ripped back and started again, with less stitches. It didn't help. The sock was still very wide. I ripped it out and started over, same stitch count, smaller needles. No go. So, I switched to some Fixation I got with him in mind and those came out fine.
August's Socktopia themes were posted and I had a great idea for the Rock and Weave pattern by Blue Moon Fiber Arts. I ordered some yarn and started the cuffs. When I started the sock portion - HUGE. I put them in time out and counted the finished Fization socks as my pair for August's Socktopia entry.
I've had it in my head to make knee socks with some Fleese Artist sock yarn I got not long ago from The Loopy Ewe. Since I'd never attempted knee socks before I decided to knit a practice pair. I pulled out some of the Opal yarn I got on sale and played around with the stitchs and checked gauge and then decided that I'd use a 2x2 rib for the leg of the sock and then switch to stockinette when I got to the foot. I was knitting on it every now and then. Nothing I'd call a WIP since it was just a test.
This is getting long - better put a photo in here so as not to bore you too much:
The Great Gray Hunter - protecting the perimeter.
Friday I took my nephews to their football practice and I sat on the sidelines knitting on the knee sock. I got to the heel flap and the eye of partridge came out really pretty in the self striping yarn. Then I turned the heel and started on the gussetts and rest of the foot. What do you know - HUGE. AGAIN! I relied on my trusty size 2 and 3 needles, which work every time for me with that 6 ply Opal yarn.
The test socks are in time out.
Saturday I picked up the new Cat Bordhi book (which is so wonderful). I spent some time knitting the first little test sock and it went OK. There were some gaping holes by the sides of the short row heel, but I definitely got the theory and hopefully I'll figure out how to avoiod the big gaping holes when I get to the next sock. It works out well that the test sock is a baby sock and a co-worker and his wife are expecting. I can put them aside for the new baby (after closing up the gaping hole).
Since I didn't want to tempt the knitting gods any further with sock knitting, I decided to work on my Charlote's Web shawl. I was knitting away, doing great, not making any mistakes even tho I was doing laundry and cooking when I got to good places to stop. I really settled in to knit while the Giants were playing and then it occurred to me that I wasn't completing 16 rows of each color (or alternating colors), but only 8 before I was changing over to the next color(s).
I wanted to cry. There was about a 1/2 hour when I just sat and stared at it sitting there. Wondering if I should start over again (for the 6th time) or if I should just un-work back to the next to last color. My decision was to tink back. I didn't put in life lines and tinking is the only way I know to un-knit lace and not lose any stitches.
I'm so pissed off about every thing I touch to knit that needs to work for me. The charity knitting is going fine. No problems there. Pompoms coming together just great. The hats are so adorable.
What do you do when knitting kicks your ass? I'm thinking I should just crochet for a while.