April into May

 Finally finished, my poor little April socks. 

Pattern: Edwardian Boating Socks Yarn: Yarn: STR Lightweight in Valenscummy.

First they had a true false start, in which I managed to knit a sock all the way to the ankle before I finally admitted to the universe and myself that I hated the pooling and flashing it was doing in that incarnation.   Then they endured several other mini-starts as I searched for the right pattern for the yarn… and then, once I had the right pattern, the poor little beasts had to compete for my unbelievably limited knitting time pre-registration, and had to compete for that little bit of time against the spinning and knitting for a project that I am completely besotted with.   I mean really.  They didn’t stand a chance. 

Over the last few days, as we creep further and further into May and the April socks still weren’t done, I started to feel really guilty.  It’s not the socks fault that the Jacob Damask shawl is way more interesting. It’s not their fault that I’m working long hours. It’s really not their fault that I got annoyed with them early on for having the audacity of being a do-over. 

I picked them up and and recommitted to them. They’re good socks. They really are.  The linen stitch panels alternating with the really cool slipped stitch action? Totally working magic on the yarn. It’s fun to work – and I only altered the pattern a little. 

I thought the heel in the pattern was, just like my first boyfriend – pretty, but dense, and so I opted for a standard eye of partridge I prefer, and I may have changed the toe for my standard as well.  (I actually didn’t check to see what toe Emma wanted me to use, I just did my thing.  It’s possible she and I are of one mind about it.) 

Despite their rather rocky start, I ended up loving these socks, and it’s a crying shame that in a moment of generosity (while I didn’t love them) I knit them in a size for giving away, rather than keeping.  Maybe I’ll be more selfish with the May socks… which I’d better start, or this whole cycle will start again.  20 days left!

73 thoughts on “April into May

  1. Beautiful socks! I’m still working on January socks, so slipping a few days into May is no big deal!

  2. Great socks. I am currently in the redo – redo of some pooled toe up two at a time. Slow going.

  3. I’ll give you a pass on this one, but only because of SS11 registration. That’s the kind of excuse nobody can fake.

  4. Those are great socks. In fact, if I had knit them I think I would keep them even if they were a bit big. Take heart – there are still 3 weeks left in May. Lots of time to knit a pair of socks! 🙂

  5. I thought the whole point of these monthly socks was so you could have a set of your own. What are you doing giving them away?!?

  6. They’re lovely! And I bet you could get away with sneaking them into your own sock drawer, if you really want to! Whoever they’re destined for is lucky, though.

  7. Pretty, patient, forgiving socks…sounds like a best friend to me…I’d keep ’em…And, by the way, thanks for the lovely, lovely photos in yesterday’s post. I’ve been smiling about them all day and, since I’m headed to eastern Canada next week, hoping that all that beauteous spring holds…

  8. You know, the Valenscummy colorway has never really appealed to me, but it looks great in these socks!

  9. So glad I have company in the SISC late club. I knit my April socks (actually fingerless mitts) completely in may becos I didn’t want to knit up my may pick (the cake was just too pretty. 🙂 )
    Off to fave your pattern…

  10. Thanks for the tip on the blossoms. I was going to go on Thurs but maybe I will head out tomorrow morning. Oh and congrats on finishing the socks.

  11. Oh, these are fantastic! I really like the slipped stitch pattern. Why, oh, why are you giving them away? Oh, o.k., I’ll send you my address, I’m sure they’ll fit!

  12. Glad that YOU survived April, never mind the socks! However, happy to see their gorgeous selves, too.

  13. You can get caught up after Sock Summit, and after you get the book a little bit farther along. As long as you cast the May socks on in May, I still say that they count.
    And the real irony of the situation is the fact that you are this busy because of socks.

  14. Great to see the April socks finished. They are quite pretty, although I would not be comfortable making this pattern with the dropped stitches. I’d worry about getting them caught on stuff and distorting. Anyway, my real reason for commenting is that I was hoping you would give us a lesson in the future on how to figure out if a particular pattern will be suitable for self-striping yarn without pooling. I’ve had that problem before and just finished them, hating them the whole way. I didn’t realize it was the pattern not the yarn that was causing the problem. Any hints you can give us to identify patterns that would be less likely to pool would be greatly appreciated. Thanks, Steph.

  15. You have inspired me to consider delving into my stash to work a personal sock a ______ club. Hmmm is the blank, month (nota) quarter (closer to the truth) or year (I can live with that). Sigh So much stash, so little ______. Now I wonder what that blank is.

  16. These are beautiful socks. I’m still on my February socks (a slip stitch pattern that I’m just not as in love with as when I started). I’m rooting for you! Maybe when I finish knitting a huge blanket I will be able to go back to knitting socks.

  17. Would consumers feel cheated if sock patterns just said “make your favorite heel” and “make your favorite toe”? It seems as though most of us do that anyway, right?

  18. If they are a US7.5 (EUR38/39) I’ll be their recipient. Which isn’t a true request, even if it is a very real desire, because:
    1) that would be a bit presumptious since I don’t know you and
    2) I’ve only ever given my Mom socks so I ought to try giving before asking for. 🙂
    I’m registered for SS11 and cannot wait! I’m disappointed to miss opening night, but it took a day to gather up the courage to spend the money and by the then they’d all be snatched up!

  19. Wishing there were Ravelry buttons to push today! One for the first pretty boyfriend/heel/dense issue, one to also request some insight as to varigated yarn suitability vs pattern. I’ve had to give up socks for a bit as my yarn came in for a gansey for my husband. I thought I would enjoy the small needles and fine yarn, but the gansey yarn is so stiff it doesn’t really move around the needle. I’ve ordered a longer one and hope that’ll help. Also, thanks again for yesterday’s pictures. (How many parks do you have in town? Is that the same park you shot the shawl pattern in?) Lucky you.

  20. That yarn – not the prettiest stuff I’ve ever seen. The pattern would probably be great with yarn that was not so…eye-distracting. The combination is pretty overpowering.

  21. If they are a US7.5 (EUR38/39) I’ll be their recipient. Which isn’t a true request, even if it is a very real desire, because:
    1) that would be a bit presumptious since I don’t know you and
    2) I’ve only ever given my Mom socks so I ought to try giving before asking for. 🙂
    I’m registered for SS11 and cannot wait! I’m disappointed to miss opening night, but it took a day to gather up the courage to spend the money and by the then they’d all been snatched up!

  22. They’re really lovely socks, and you’re inspiring me to either get out the needles, or get cranking on the circular sock machine, because the last sock I made doesn’t have a mate yet. And many of my other pairs are developing holes. Soon I’ll be down to that one blue mateless sock, or some strange unmatched combinations.

  23. Beautiful socks! I would love to hear more details about registration. How many people registered??? So exciting!!!!

  24. Nice socks! Although the colorway might not be my absolute favorite in the entire universe. I should probably do up my own Sock of the Month Club after Sheep & Wool. I now have enough yarn for *several* (ahem) socks in my stash and I haven’t finished the pair I started in March yet!

  25. I keep thinking of this as the “Pondscummy” colorway. Not fair, I know.

  26. I can sympathize – my Beltane socks also had a false start (ginormo Frankenstein socks), so I ended up finishing a few days late. Your April socks are gorgeous, and I will have to try that pattern on some of my poolier yarn!

  27. That is a great looking pattern. I am working on a pair that is pooling and I am also not liking it. I might have to give that pattern a go to see if it helps.

  28. Perfect yarn and pattern match. Reminds me of a Flutterby pattern that I love. Still April socks even when you finish them in May. Lots of time for May socks.
    Good to make that decision before you’re done. I made socks last year, in perfect yarn, but wrong pattern (and too big). Had to undo them so I could enjoy them. Worked.

  29. Beautiful beautiful socks. Too nice to hide inside shoes. How do you manage to get so much done???

  30. Great socks! I’m really glad you decided to rip out the first try. The pooling looked really odd. This is much better.

  31. On my monitor, the colors look rather Christmas-y. However, they don’t look like a size that you absolutely, must, gotta positively give away (as long as those are your feet modeling them).
    Soooo. . .either keep these for yourself and knit something else for the recipient, or buy more of that yarn and knit yourself some Christmas-y socks.
    And, echoing others, I’d be worried about those slipped stitches catching on something (or being caught by something, such as young kittens).

  32. Love those socks… I suddenly know of so many people doing the sock-a-month thing, and … I better check: I might be, too. Going off now to count.
    Thought seriously about SS11 but the time and distance involved has held me back. We in NM may have our own little SS-NM11. Thanks for all of your work!

  33. I liked the original incarnation, but these were worth the re-knit. The colorway and the knitting pattern balance perfectly.

  34. A pair of socks a month, on top of all your other knittijn, spinning etc – I don’t know how you can even aim at that! I’m with the “still knitting the January socks” brigade….

  35. The re-do was so worth it. That first incarnation made me cringe…I hated the pools of white. These are so much more lovely. Thanks for taking care of that for me! 🙂

  36. Did not recognize that being the same yarn. Excellent job of breaking up the pooling.

  37. I love those socks…fiercely…so much better than their original incarnation…and, now I’m going to have to search for “eye of partridge” and try that on my next pair of socks…very intriguing!
    But what I’m really longing to see is the Damask…so far it is one of the only things I’ve seen that could make me want to knit lace!

  38. Those socks are magnificent. Now I must try that pattern with the yarn that I love, but not in any pattern I’ve tried so far.
    I’m dying to see how your Damask comes out. The teaser pics you’ve shown so far have been sweet torture 🙂

  39. Adorable socks, despite their slow start. I think I know what to use the stunningly weird stripey yarn I dyed at a workshop a while back to make now. Either these or “Leyburn”. Thanks for showing the way.
    And then there is that Damask thing you keep talking about -makes me want to start one of those too!
    But first there is a prom shawl to make: due date June 1. ‘Nuff said.

  40. Pretty socks – much nicer than the original version. And thank you for the pictures of the cherry blossom – beautiful!

  41. Love the marriage of pattern and colourway. Again take a bow and whoever gets them will be thrilled. I think the red is simply smashingly beautiful!

  42. Lovely socks! I have three sets of sock yarn looking at me longingly, which I’m not allowed to start until I finish a shawl for a friend’s wedding. I think I might be half done *sigh*
    I also took your advice on the Cherry Blossoms, and took a run through there today. They’re still beautiful, and the park is still amazingly full – running down the cherry blossom hill was not an option both because we wanted the view, but also because it was nearly a traffic jam!

  43. Beautiful pattern and yarn together.
    How do the slipped stitches hold up when worn?

  44. Can’t say the colorway is to my taste but I love the pattern. And I agree that this pattern is a much better fit for the spacing of the colors in the colorway.
    Just goes to show, we should never give up on a sock just for being difficult and first impressions aren’t always right.

  45. Mmmm, I love what the pattern does for the handpainted yarn! I wonder if any Edwardians actually wore these (or something like them) while boating?

  46. What enormously gorgeous socks. Oh! I can make a pair!
    You have a standing desk? How does it work? Did you rig it up? Or is it pre-made?

  47. “April showered” these poor socks with all kinds of troubles, but they turned into beautiful “May flowers.” I am very surprised at how much I love these socks. I love colorful sock yarn, but not fancy patterns, but everything about this pattern screams, “KNIT ME!!!” Great job, Stephanie. Thanks for always being an inspiration to me and so many others.

  48. Well done! Am I right that the slip-stitch pattern is the one Barbara Walker calls Royal Quilting? Did you have any trouble with the slip stitches’ pulling the fabric together vertically, in contrast to the plain sts that didn’t?

  49. You can just up and change a heel if you don’t like it?!? Ignore the author’s directions and just go do what you darn well want to?!?!?
    You don’t get in trouble for that?!?! :-0
    *a very obedient knitter*

  50. I love slipped stitches…I’m doing them right now on a Annie Modesitt hat. It’s so simple, I could see myself doing these on another patterns too.

  51. Hummm If these socks aren’t for you, then who’s feet are in them in the pictures and why do they look like the fit so well?

  52. Why can’t you just make up an ending to suit the handspun you do have left? That’s what I would do. I’m starting to mod everything, all the time. It’s the only way I can get finished.

Comments are closed.