September 2, 2010


I'm sure a lot of you are where we are, so I bet you'll understand when I say that as cool as it is that it's back to school time, it's a lot of work. It's really cutting into the blogging/knitting time, but I've still got a pair of socks to show you, and thought I'd take a minute to tell you that Diane is (according to the random number generator) the new owner of the copy of the Commemorative Edition of the Knitter's Almanac . I've emailed her, and I hope she's thrilled.

As I trucked from Portland to Toronto last week, these socks turned up.

Rogue Roses (my pattern, and one I love, as is so often the case with things you dream up yourself) knit in STR Mediumweight... a rare gem that I snagged from Tina's desk while she wasn't looking. 

She saw I had it later, so I don't really consider it stealing.  She could have reclaimed it if she really cared... that's the way I see it.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to convince a 16 year old that it is not possible that one's social standing can actually be ruined by having the wrong colour sneakers.

(It can't... right? Considering the state of my shoe closet, I'd like to think that character can overcome dodgy footwear.)

Posted by Stephanie at September 2, 2010 1:08 PM

Yet another gorgeous pair of socks.I love them!

Posted by: Judy at September 2, 2010 1:40 PM

These socks are really cool & they would go with any color sneakers, if you ask me!

Posted by: Nancy at September 2, 2010 1:41 PM

Nice socks! And hey, if it was just sitting there, it was up for grabs-just begging to be knit up.
My footwear consists of almost all birks, and I don't know what that says about my character-maybe I'm just easygoing? like comfort over style? Have feet that hate to be cooped up in hot shoes?...

Posted by: ~margaret at September 2, 2010 1:41 PM

Now, while I was never at the top of the popularity chain in highschool, I honesly couldn't have told you what anyone else was wearing on their feet, unless the shoes were unbelievably cool or the heals impossibly high.

Additionally, awesome socks!

Posted by: OnlyPlaying at September 2, 2010 1:45 PM

Yes, it is true that social standing can be influenced by the wrong color shoes, socks, clothing, hair, eyes, purses, backpacks, etc., etc. My teenager assures me that this is so. But, it only applies to teenagers so we are safe. This is the time to discuss a clothing allowance with your child--a set amount of money and they are responsible for their clothing without parental influence--aside from amount of skin showing. It worked for me like a charm. I purchased an outfit or two for events that "required" a parental approved outfit. The clothing allowance eliminated a LOT of arguing.

Posted by: gail at September 2, 2010 1:48 PM

I love your pattern. Why wear shoes at all when you have socks like those. Well, maybe so the socks don't wear out too fast.

Posted by: Judy in Indiana at September 2, 2010 1:49 PM

Those are amazing socks! It must be a fetish! Great yarn, great pattern, pretty feet.

Posted by: Juliet in Grand Rapids at September 2, 2010 1:54 PM

Beautiful socks! The pattern is really interesting and I love the colors!

I don't think shoes really make a difference in teenager years (I choose comfort rather than fashion, I was in an athletic field no way was I going to run in anything frivolous or anything that might fall apart). Clothes, however, can be a different issue. However, I agree with Gail and her clothing allowance idea, that definitely works.

Posted by: Loki at September 2, 2010 1:54 PM

Those are truly creative socks! I will have to make a pair of my own!

BTW, I am impressed with your DD, and the fact that she can handle a boat, ride a tandem bike in a race and raise the most money in the history of that charity even as the youngest rider there (I am hoping I have the correct DD in this one), I would hope she realizes the importance of not sweating the small stuff like matching shoes once in a while.

Posted by: Tabi at September 2, 2010 1:56 PM

I have Rogue Roses kitted up with some Cascade Yarns Heritage-can't wait to start them, they really are beautiful. Not sure about the shoe colour thing- my 12 year old daughter isn't home from here first day of seventh grade yet- I'll have to ask her.

Posted by: Kim(with kids) at September 2, 2010 1:58 PM

I'll be doing the *happydance* on Tuesday and then settling down for uninterrupted knitting time. Looking forward to it makes this week easier to take.

But the two pairs of 'first day of school' socks that I promised? Not going to happen.

Posted by: Presbytera at September 2, 2010 2:00 PM

Thanks again for the chance to win the EZ book! I'm green with envy that Diane won. lol The new socks are just lovely. Your DD seems pretty level-headed, so the shoe "issue" won't last long, I'm sure.....

Posted by: Nutmeg33 at September 2, 2010 2:01 PM

NO, it is not possible that the wrong color sneakers will ruin a 16 yr old's social standing. No one else cares nearly as much as she does.

But, what *is* actually not possible is to convince a 16 yr old of this.

Posted by: Colleen at September 2, 2010 2:06 PM

Almost too pretty to cover up with shoes at all. I'd use them for bed socks only so I could admire their construction while sitting in the recliner with my feet up.

Posted by: JoAnn at September 2, 2010 2:10 PM

Love the color and the pattern! Better not let Tina see them. This is when she may decide to reclaim her yarn...

Posted by: Joyce at September 2, 2010 2:12 PM

HOORAAAYYY for the happy winner of the EZ book. Hope you signed it for her and that she is thrilled. Love the socks, and I've been giggling because I just ordered that pattern from BMFA. I'm so glad to see the pictures of it all knit up.

Posted by: Liz in Missouri at September 2, 2010 2:14 PM

Apparently, shoe color affects the standing in third grade, also. Don't know what the translation is between an 8 year old and a 16 year old. Perhaps the fall from grace is twice as great?

Posted by: Ruth in PA at September 2, 2010 2:14 PM

My sons get one pair of tennis shoes and one pair of dress shoes. The tennis shoes are usually as white as I can find them, sometimes with navy blue trim; the dress shoes are always black. I don't know that things would be that much different if I had daughters, though they might also get a white pair of dress shoes.

I believe in neutral shoes to go with a lot of outfits, and quality shoes that treat your feet properly. The one time I tried a somewhat trendy shoe left me unable to walk -- and it wasn't even a high heel or a too-small shoe, just a poorly constructed shoe that my feet refused to tolerate for lack of cushioning.

And, yes, if she has the emotional and physical strength to crew a boat, she can withstand peer pressure to have a particular color shoe! Besides, I've always been much more impressed by people who create their own style than those who dress just like everyone else!

Posted by: Me at September 2, 2010 2:15 PM

Lovely socks - will have to try them. I'm not much of a fan of multi-colored socks (although yours look gorgeous) - any idea if they are as lovely in a solid/semi-solid color?

My kids survived not having all the "cool" stuff and my daughter actually thanked me the first year she was in college ('05 so you know it wasn't eons ago). I hope that works for you!

Posted by: Amy at September 2, 2010 2:20 PM

Those are so beautiful, they make me want to knit socks (I've never gotten further than half way through one foot).

Posted by: Kali at September 2, 2010 2:21 PM

Not just shoes. Book covers. Lord help us all if we don't have the right book covers in the house RIGHT NOW.

Posted by: Patty at September 2, 2010 2:23 PM

Those socks are lovely! As I'm not a knitter - I watch your blog purely for the writing - do they fit well in shoes?

All details to an outfit mean the difference between what works and what doesn't. I have twin teenage daughters and am glad they have one another to bouce around these ponderous decisions. They certainly wouldn't want my opinion!

Posted by: gretabones at September 2, 2010 2:26 PM

All right, I've gotta say those are slick. With my bow legs, too, they might look even more spectacularly spiraled...

Posted by: rams at September 2, 2010 2:30 PM

Beautiful socks! And no, that isn't stealing.... I couldn't agree with you more...sneakers cannot ruin social standing (unless they stink, as happened to my brother-in-law, but that is a whole other story).

Posted by: Doris at September 2, 2010 2:31 PM

And troops? She's got three daughters -- though maybe whoever's being outed would always prefer to have it land on one of her sisters?

Posted by: rams at September 2, 2010 2:34 PM

Bad footwear can be overcome by fabulous handknit socks.

Posted by: Angel at September 2, 2010 2:34 PM

Beautiful :) My mom made me a pair of these when they shipped out for the RSC last year. Great pattern!

Posted by: Kate at September 2, 2010 2:36 PM

The socks look great!

Posted by: twelvedaysold at September 2, 2010 2:37 PM

Now that my 12 year old wears the same size shoe I do my shoe collection is in trouble!

Love the pattern and the yarn is delicious!

Posted by: MicheleinMaine at September 2, 2010 2:42 PM

Tina was no doubt thrilled to see you enjoying her yarn so much; I know I would be. And look what it turned into!

Good luck with the shoes! (One pair Birkis. Maybe two, to be lavish. That'll do, right?)

Posted by: AlisonH at September 2, 2010 2:42 PM

while it is true that one's character can overcome one's shoes, it may be less true when one is 16.

Posted by: dana at September 2, 2010 2:45 PM

My 15-year-old daughter told me it's "social suicide" to ride the band bus from the high school to the stadium for after school practice, so it is possible that your social standing could be ruined by the wrong color shoes. And if she knew I was posting this I am sure her social standing would be even more endangered than it would be by riding the band bus. However, it is highly unlikely that her friends are going to read all the comments to a knitting blog, so I think perhaps I am temporarily safe from new allegations of trying to ruin her life.

Posted by: Ruth Anne at September 2, 2010 2:48 PM

Shoe crisis at our house as well with a 12-year-old.
Converse tennis shoes -- unavailable due to broken shoe lace.
Backup (somewhat small) tennis shoes -- already at school; left in gym locker.
Other pairs -- too small due to freakishly growing feet of said 12-year-old.

Solution: Flip flops.

Posted by: Sarah JS at September 2, 2010 2:49 PM

You're absolutely correct: I am thrilled!

Social ruin and teenagers? Bound to happen over almost anything. I did find that clothing/accessory needs change dramatically with the amount of money that said teenager is expected to contribute.

Posted by: Diane at September 2, 2010 2:55 PM

Personally, I think Tina deliberately leaves skeins of yarn she thinks you might like on her desk when you're in town, just for you to - um - repurpose! Yeah. That's right. ;o)

Posted by: GeniaKnitz at September 2, 2010 3:00 PM

The wrong color sneakers, worn with confidence and a streak of rebelliousness, can actually increase one's social standing in our experience. It's like brazenly stealing sock yarn. Well done!

Posted by: Su1282 at September 2, 2010 3:03 PM

Social-ruin-Sneakers and Rogue Roses, hugely alliterative! Nice socks ... perfect for socks that rock yarn - I wish I sat near Tina

Posted by: cookknitwine at September 2, 2010 3:26 PM

In high school? I'm sorry to say that YES it can. Of course, there are variables involved. But if the kid isn't comfortable, it ain't gonna work.

Posted by: Sara M at September 2, 2010 3:26 PM

Oh, and those are gorgeous socks - love the color and pattern combo. Sorry, got distracted by high school flashbacks :)

Posted by: Sara M at September 2, 2010 3:27 PM

Lovely socks, lady! May I ask what colour of shoes is up for debate here? I've always had a thing for red.

Posted by: SpillyJane at September 2, 2010 3:29 PM

Love the socks. Someday, I'll be good enough to do something different with my socks...

Until then, tell the 16 year old offspring that if she is so concerned about her shoes, the self-esteem of her peers must be terrible if they're all staring at her shoes. When she insists that they don't stare at her shoes, you can then tell her she doesn't need to worry about them.

Posted by: Renee Anne at September 2, 2010 3:31 PM

I'm not sure about the footwear. My 13 year old insisted on having a pair of Converse basketball sneakers because "that's the style, Mom!" I forbore from pointing out that that was the style when I was in school in the 1970s, too. I'm sure that would make it all much less cool. I'm pretty sure, though, that they didn't cost $40 a pair in the 1970s!

Posted by: Yarnhog (Suzanne) at September 2, 2010 3:40 PM

Lovely socks!

Character trumps dodgy footwear in direct proportion to age, I think.

Posted by: Vanessa at September 2, 2010 3:42 PM

Surely you must know that I (or anyone else over the age of 25) cannot possibly have any fashion sense whatsoever. Ask my daughters--they'll tell you. My middle daughter has forbidden me to purchase any clothing for myself without her okay. The thought of shopping for/with them gives me hives.

Your Rogue Roses are beautiful, and I'm sure that Tina is thrilled to see what her beautiful yarn became. My pat line is, "It's not theft. It's redistribution."

Tuesday is coming. We can do this.

Posted by: barbinvic at September 2, 2010 3:44 PM

It's all in the attitude. If you act like 'these are the coolest shoes ever', the rest of the world will believe you.

Love the socks. That yarn looks wonderful.

Posted by: 2muchfun at September 2, 2010 3:44 PM

Depends on how "wrong" the color is and whether or not there's anything else terrible about the shoes. If it's the hot pink mesh sneakers I had in 5th grade...yeah, those can negatively affect your social standing. The Doc Martens I spray painted a bright purple in 10th grade were a huge hit though.

Maybe lend her those socks. Those would make any shoes look good.

Posted by: Heather W at September 2, 2010 3:46 PM

Socks - lovely!
Diane - congrats!
Footwear - too personal a thing to make comment for women at large, but for me - no I don't think your life will be ruined - then again I've been wrong a lot lately.

Posted by: Diana at September 2, 2010 3:49 PM

I have it on the authority of a very fashion conscious 12-year old that the wrong colored shoes actually CAN ruin your social standing.

Explains so much about my own school days . . . .

Posted by: Becky at September 2, 2010 3:51 PM

As I understand it, it's not so much the colour as the brand of trainers that is important. Here in London, kids will knife each other for the right trainers.

Ask your daughter if she picks her friends based on the colour of their trainers. And then make her watch Mean Girls.

Posted by: Sarah at September 2, 2010 3:51 PM

*Of course* social standing can be ruined by incorrect footwear. Even my 14-year-old knows that. Sheesh.

(Apparently all that sleep deprivation she perpetrated on me earlier in life has taken its toll.)

Perhaps she could mitigate the error by wearing stunning socks? Not that I'm suggesting that you should give those up, of course. Nope, not me.

Posted by: Lucia at September 2, 2010 4:06 PM

Yikes... Makes me thank my lucky stars I'm not in high school anymore. I wouldn't relive those angst-ridden, insecure, trying-to-fit-in days for all of the yarn at Stitches West.

Posted by: Hilarie at September 2, 2010 4:16 PM

I almost envy your issues with your teenager. My "discussions" (what he calls "blah blah blah") with my teen son consist of, "Yes, you must bathe daily AND wash under your arms; yes, combing your hair in between haircuts is desirable from a health as well as an aesthetic perspective; yes, socks (and we're not even talking the fancy hand-knitted kind) help protect your feet and keep your shoes -- and thus your toes -- from getting all grody; and yes, it can actually be helpful to your image and self-esteem if you wear your clothes properly, rather than backwards and/or inside out -- even if they don't match or aren't season-appropriate." Good luck - may the Force be with you. (PS Love the socks!)

Posted by: Suzanne at September 2, 2010 4:18 PM

I always ask my kids if they would think less of their friends for having the "wrong" shoes/jeans/jacket/whatever, and they always say no. Still, it doesn't seem to convince them that people won't think less of them for dressing differently.

Posted by: Rox at September 2, 2010 4:21 PM

Those are some amazingly awesome socks. I want a pair, but I would settle (happily, blissfully) with a better idea of how to make them. I think I could recreate if I stared and swatched until I was blue in the face, but they would still end up flawed. My impatience speaking again.

Posted by: Seanna Lea at September 2, 2010 4:22 PM

Not by sneekers, but by the wrong colored sox!

Posted by: Sheyna R at September 2, 2010 4:27 PM

OK for the novice knitter who is still terrified of cables - what kind of cast on did you use for those socks? It looks very pretty.

the whole sock looks very pretty but the cast on is what caught my eye! ;)

Posted by: Lissa at September 2, 2010 4:33 PM

Mo-om! You just don't understand anything!

Yes her day will be ruined and she will make yours miserable too. I feel your pain, I've a teenage daughter too.

Posted by: Gillian Fuqua at September 2, 2010 4:34 PM

About the shoes - It was a long time ago and I hated it at the time. Now I am ever so glad to have been in a Catholic school with uniforms right down to the shoes and hat. We all looked alike and hated the clothes, but it was totally non-competitive.

Great socks as usual. I might have some new socks too if I spent less time reading blogs about knitting.

Posted by: Jan S at September 2, 2010 4:54 PM

Bad enough you pilfer from Tina's desk. Worse, it is a 'rare gem'. Ultimate indignity, you flaunt your one of a kind, drop dead gorgeous yarn in front of us. Hmmmmph!

Posted by: Robby at September 2, 2010 5:00 PM

Beautiful socks! And what a gorgeous pattern; I love how the vines snake around from the heel to the front of the cuff. I can't be the only one to beg for a quick write-up!

Posted by: Laura H at September 2, 2010 5:04 PM

As I've tried to teach you a thousand times over the years, dear Stephie,shoes are about personality and style. No amount of character is of any use whatsoever. Sorry to have to bring this up publicly, but I've told you and told you....

Posted by: Your Mother at September 2, 2010 5:12 PM

I got so excited when I saw today's blog. Whoops! I'm the wrong Diane!

Congrats to the right one! Enjoy!

Posted by: Diane at September 2, 2010 5:18 PM

I have had this conversation before, I would say "how Much"," Whats the quality of the shoe " , and "this is how much I will kick in" and if your picture was taken for the yearbook would you want people to see it. Now my youngest is more into comfort than "Style". Thank heavens and knock on wood.

Posted by: Kris at September 2, 2010 5:25 PM

Your socks outweigh any possible dodgy shoe issue you might have.

Posted by: Dina at September 2, 2010 5:26 PM

All my cool shoes came from my mom! Seriously, she'll find the perfect shoes for me on some crazy clearance rack, and everyone at work will be rediculously impressed. However, those socks are definitely cooler than shoes. Maybe it's a ruse to get the socks instead of shoes? Watch out!

Posted by: kelly at September 2, 2010 5:30 PM

Gorgeous socks! I am verklempt.

Posted by: kelli ann at September 2, 2010 5:52 PM

Oh yay for back-to-school time, when it's 95 degrees but I can't take my kids to the beach--not that you'd want to, what with rip currents from every hurricane that passes by (they already have an early dismissal scheduled for tomorrow, thanks to Earl)--and when I finally get the youngest nursed to sleep at night and am able to escape, instead of sitting down to knit, I'm packing lunches. Today was Day Two of school. I went to say good morning to my 6yo and he scowled at me and snapped, "I'm not going to school!"

178 days to go.

Posted by: amy at September 2, 2010 5:55 PM

Socks are great but I'm thinking you'll have little luck with the shoe thing.

Wondering: Are the super-short shorts and super low-cut tank tops (complete with bra straps sticking out) as popular by you as they are by me? I must confess, I am not a fan.

Posted by: Mea at September 2, 2010 5:57 PM

Ouch! Been there. Done that. The solution in our house was "I'll pay for the ones I approve of/can afford. You pay for the others." Amazing how that chilled the "Gotta haves". There was this one pair of boots... but that's another story. Now in her early thirties she goes for best quality running shoes on the one hand, finding it makes a world of difference to the health of her whole body, and absolutely wild, wonderful, sexy party and work shoes. She's great to shop with! She sometimes makes me stretch my head space in thinking about what I wear. Moral: They do grow up. And it's great!

Posted by: KarenJ at September 2, 2010 6:00 PM

Nice socks! Teens are the curse of all parents... too bad they just WON'T stay cute and tiny! But the day cometh when yours will have their own teens, MWA-HA-HA!

Posted by: Anna at September 2, 2010 6:07 PM

If you have ruined her social standing, your work today is through. grab a beer and go soak in the tub.

Posted by: Naomi at September 2, 2010 6:11 PM

Lovely socks. And no, you didn't steal the yarn. If it is not attached to something on the needles, then it is considered "abandoned" and is up for grabs. This is a dangerous attitude in a house where 2 stash aquiring knitters are attempting to cohabitate. Mom and I are currently estabilishing "stash boundaries" and trying to hide the more special yarns from each other.

Posted by: Sharon in Michigan at September 2, 2010 6:14 PM

My first thought - who is paying for the second pair of sneakers?
My second thought - Stephanie, pick your battles (mine is combing your hair before you leave the house).
My third thought is - thank God your daughter doesn't have mild cerebral palsy and concomitant sensible footwear issues to add to the mix of SHOES, it is not pleasant. Most shoe shopping exercises have had me in tears, and DD is now 16.
My fourth thought is - thank God for school uniforms, the angst now is reserved for non-school days, and boy can they wick-it-up for those days.

Here is hoping that Tina sells enough of the colourway to make your purloining ways suitable recompense, I think she might.

Posted by: StellaMM at September 2, 2010 6:15 PM

Beautiful Socks! Good luck with the shoes (chose your battles- but it sounds as though you and Joe are doing a great job), and Congrats Diane!

Posted by: janicequilts at September 2, 2010 6:16 PM

My friend had to give up sock knitting because here hands/wrists were bothering her, so she gifted me with her kit of this patter from a sock club a year or so ago. They are beautiful, but I'm having such a time of it. One sock is about 3-fourths done. Hopefully, once school starts (8 Sept here in Seattle) I'll be able to jump back in and finish them. But I never found I could work on them anywhere but home when I was alone and it was very quiet.... They're so pretty and I do love the way the rosebuds turn out once you've done them correctly. Wish me luck when I pick them up again next week!

Posted by: Kathleen at September 2, 2010 6:27 PM

I don't remember what kind of shoes I wore in high school. I was so unaware at that time that I didn't know I as a complete outcaste, along with the whole band. Since there were 200 people in the band, there were always plenty of parties to go to and friends to hang out with, not to mention the overnight trips to parades and the annual trips to Disneyland. I doubt that the "popular" kids had half as much fun.

Posted by: Marina Stern at September 2, 2010 6:42 PM

I love, love, love those socks!

Posted by: Maggie at September 2, 2010 7:29 PM

I suppose that is why I only have 4-footed children. Of course, my only issue is that my children want to take on the 'interloper' bobcats: (not a good thing from inside the house - I keep on tellin' them!)
Such beautiful socks! I am working on a pair (not in the same pattern - darn.) I'm making these for a trip to Texas, and with each stitch I keep reminding myself that SOMEONE at the airport screening is going to see these. Right? RIGHT? why am I doing this??????..........

Posted by: bam at September 2, 2010 7:37 PM

I loved these socks when I knit them the first time..and my friend loved them more when I gave them to her for her birthday. I am going to knit them again in the Rare Gem that I have..they were too long for me tho so I need to leave out a repeat..doesn't sound like fun..

Posted by: Val Champ at September 2, 2010 8:06 PM

I love the colorway for those socks! Will it be released?

It reminds me of Manos del Uruguay in Wildflowers which is the yarn I used to make one of my first scarves. It took 3 skeins and at the time this $45 scarf was the most expensive thing in my closet.

Posted by: Megan D at September 2, 2010 8:10 PM

In my teenage years, it wasn't the colour. It was the "newness". New? BAD. Old with holes and dirt? GOOD. Today - Birks except for the aerobic walks. And, by coincidence (or not), the sneakers are BOTH dirty and with holes.

Posted by: Jo-Anne at September 2, 2010 8:14 PM

Wow. Your mom commented. (And as usual, she's right.)

Posted by: Presbytera at September 2, 2010 8:24 PM

Beautiful socks!

Shoe story. My daughter when she was 7 or 8 fell in love with a pair of UGLY boots. I refused to buy them. A friend ask her what she wanted for her birthday. Guess what she got for her birthday, yup, that pair of UGLY boots.

Sam needs to find a way around, "No,I am not getting those!" Like talking to Grandma, saving allowance, finding a job, or whatever it takes, if she really wants them.

Posted by: Judy at September 2, 2010 8:53 PM

Hmmm. . . what color, exactly, are the sneakers in question?

Posted by: Elizabeth D at September 2, 2010 8:59 PM

What's wrong with your footwear? I've seen it and it looks fine to me. The fact that it looks astonishingly similar to my own choices of footwear is not relevant to my judgement, I think.

Posted by: Maria at September 2, 2010 9:02 PM

Gorgeous Socks! I fought with my 15 year old about necklines. Cleavage seems to be the argument du jour ...sigh...

Posted by: Marilyn at September 2, 2010 9:10 PM

I love those socks so much that I just bought the pattern and yarn to make them with (Little Bunny Foo-Foo).

Posted by: Cindy in Brooklyn, CT at September 2, 2010 9:19 PM

now i want to knit some socks.
or at least have some knitted socks.
i'm so impressionable.

Posted by: Steven A. at September 2, 2010 9:20 PM

As far as footwear goes, I have my "good" flip-flops and my "work" flip-flops. What can I say? I am a California Girl. :)
Gorgeous socks, by the way.

Posted by: Shelly at September 2, 2010 9:21 PM

My 16-year old wears size 12 women's (not sure if you use US sizes in Canada?) The only shoes that fit her are converse sneakers (because the men's shoes look just like the women's) and flip flops. When she has to wear fancy shoes we have to order them on the internet. So, she has several pairs of converse in different colors (including custom ones that she designed herself on the internet). Don't know if the colors affect her social status or just her fashion sense....

Posted by: Lisa at September 2, 2010 9:35 PM

Seriously? Dude? Shoes matter. >

Posted by: Gretchen at September 2, 2010 9:36 PM

Awesome socks!

Posted by: Riin at September 2, 2010 9:42 PM

Those are the coolest socks ever! And good luck with convincing a 16-year old of anything, especially if it involves clothing, shoes or social standing!!

Posted by: Barb at September 2, 2010 10:15 PM

Being a couple of decades out of high school, and a rather stereotypical lesbian with a fondness for "sensible" shoes - I can't say I understood the fashion/popularity thing in high school.

Although, I did succumb to the flashing/light up shoe trend in elementary school. Those were awesome.

Although, those socks would look good in anything, even doc martens!

Good luck with the 16 year old and the shoe thing. (Pick your battles - my mother had to deal with hair the color of a rainbow!)

Posted by: Angi at September 2, 2010 10:27 PM

I think that the reflection that one's footwear makes upon one's character is mitigated by the acquisition of years. (read: we can get away with way uncool shoes by our age)

Posted by: Jocelyn at September 2, 2010 10:54 PM

well, i'd have to withold judgement on the shoe colour issue until knowing the case in more detail. is it the wrong colour as in black instead of white? or is it the wrong colour as in "these Cheez Whiz coloured hightops will be just fine with your school uniform and besides, they were 80% off"?

Posted by: christine m. east of toronto at September 2, 2010 10:56 PM

My wonderful daughter and I agree. I have to make this pattern for her cousin for Christmas. It is gorgeous! And very Emily. Who does not read knitting blogs luckily.

Posted by: Sue Young at September 2, 2010 11:02 PM

I love the footwear, but it's just wrong to call them socks. They're art for feet!

Posted by: Margaret at September 2, 2010 11:29 PM

Perhaps you could convince your 16-year-old that a really fantastic pair of hand-knit socks outweighs any and all shoes? Okay, my 15-year-old wouldn't buy that either. Go for the clothing allowance.

Posted by: charlotte at September 3, 2010 1:39 AM

Beautiful socks indeed :)

Posted by: Gunita at September 3, 2010 2:16 AM

Whenever my kids (now 11 and 13) try to get me down that path I tell them that if their shoes (clothes, brand/type of mobile phone) matter one bit to their friends, they've got the wrong friends. Works so far.
What works too is getting them firmly hooked on the handmade (ooak, original) stuff, though I admit that's a bit hard in the shoe department. I had always thought it would stop around the age of 10 but I still get requests for custom pen pouches, sneaker bags and painted mugs as birthday presents for their pals. I think that's sweet!
Our battle of the day: I consider 2 inch heels too high for a 13 year old so I'm morbidly uncool. Guess I'll have to live (or is that die?) with that.

Posted by: Jeannine at September 3, 2010 5:09 AM

Lovely socks as usual, I love the colours as well.

Not sure about the shoes thing, I don't think it would do any harm but not sure a 16 year old would ever believe that! I had a school uniform though so my shoes were always black.

Posted by: Laura at September 3, 2010 5:24 AM

Great socks! I know that you designed that pattern for Tina and a different colorway, but it looks like you designed that pattern for the Rare Gems yarn that you used too. It really makes that yarn pop! I also love the teenage footwear angst. At least it's what she's wearing to school that's going to ruin her life, and not what you're wearing LOL!. Have you ever heard anything like this from your girls? "Mom, are you really wearing that to the Parent Teacher conference (or assembly, or concert?) If you do I'll never live it down!" It just cracks me up!

Posted by: Dyepotgirl at September 3, 2010 5:24 AM

No sneakers problems here! My 16 years old Emma has 34 (yes, 34!!!) pairs of black shoes... No matter what she wears, she always has the right color. That's a good thing as she's got pink hair now. Could you imagine what it would be if she had to match her hair, her shoes and her pants?

I love your socks!!!

Posted by: Carole at September 3, 2010 6:05 AM

Oooh - those socks are just gorgeous!!
re the teenage shoes thing - we gave our daughter a dress allowance at age fourteen - all I bought were school uniforms, and school shoes. One or two fairly ghastly outfits later, she calmed down and got reasonable acceptable (to parents!) outfits. Good luck!

Posted by: rosie at September 3, 2010 7:13 AM

LOVE the socks! You always make it looks so easy!

Sorry, but you've forgotton what it's like to be 16. One's social standing can be ruined by the wrong colored sneakers! Especially where girls are concerned. I remember one of my DDs wanted hot pink Converse. It had to be Hot Pink Converse. I protested... hot pink Converse doesn't match everything, it's hideous! But upon taking her to school, low and behold... all the gals where in Hot Pink Converse...Bleh! I was glad to have bought them as I overheard a couple of gals taking about another girl's black converse... "Look at that...she's wearing black Converse! What a poser!"

I'm so glad I'm not in High School anymore!

Posted by: Mary at September 3, 2010 7:30 AM

Will you please give us that sock pattern?? They're beautiful!

Posted by: Gardiner at September 3, 2010 8:03 AM

Stephanie, I love these socks! I was a member last year and tried to make these but kept messing up the chart. (I had never worked from a chart before.) After ripping out 3 times I put them aside. Now that I've seen yours I'm inspired to go back and try again.

Posted by: Ellen at September 3, 2010 8:26 AM

"I have to convince a 16 year old that it is not possible that one's social standing can actually be ruined by having the wrong colour sneakers."

It can only ruin her standing with people you don't want her associating with anyway.

When our daughter was in intermediate school (grades 4-6)she was once told by some idiot that "I'm surprised with the way you dress that you have any friends". She's now a high school junior, still dresses pretty much the same way, and I'm having a hard time keeping track of all of her friends, 99% of whom I'm pleased with.

Posted by: Iris at September 3, 2010 8:37 AM

Gorgeous socks!!! I wonder whether my technical skills are up to this level??

Best family shoe story: About 15 years ago, my husband and I, down on our knees, are trying to persuade our elder daughter Sarah, aged 5, to agree to a pair of sturdy and CHEAP winter shoes, made in China apparently for dwarf soldiers, while our younger daugher Rachel (aged 3) looks on admiringly: 'Look, Sarah, they're so strong, they'll keep the rain out, you'll have lovely dry warm feet all winter.' Sarah wiggles her ankles, gazes at the shoes consderingly and replies, 'Yes, and I can kick Rachel in them!!'

Have to confess we did buy them ... Rachel didn't get kicked too much, and Sarah now has a thing for Kurt Geigers....

Posted by: Lindsey (London) at September 3, 2010 8:37 AM

Perhaps Tina is waiting till the yarn is knitted into socks to ask for its return! Lovely yarn, lovely socks!

Posted by: Sally at September 3, 2010 9:07 AM

Give it up, buy the correct shoes and then you won't be responsible for her social ruin. You can do your happy dance w/a clear conscience. Great socks!

Posted by: Leta at September 3, 2010 9:22 AM

Congratulations to Diane. Congratualtions to you for those most beautiful socks. Oh and congrats to daughter for getting the right colour shoes haha

Posted by: JoanH at September 3, 2010 9:26 AM

Hmmm. That shoe thing gave me something to think about. I'm down to one pair of Keen flip flop that I started wearing as soon as the snow melted and I plan to wear until the snow returns. I think this might reflect my personality fairly well.

I'm too lazy to go do anything about it.

The socks are really interesting and look like they would have been fun to knit.

Posted by: Rani at September 3, 2010 9:36 AM

I have boys, they wear the same sneakers every day until they wear them out and then we go buy whatever is on sale in their size, usually black or white. I have learned to buy dress shoes on an event-needed basis because they will grow out of them beforehand otherwise. I would say that you are the best world class enabler of BMFA STR and Tina has no problem with you helping yourself to a bit of yarn every now and again-I'm sure we all clicked over to her site when we got the link for the socks (couldn't have been just me). BTW, my son has been back in school since mid August. High school. He's 14. He doesn't give a fig what anyone thinks about his shoes or what he wears-he's in it for comfort. I think it's mostly a girl thing. I had pink hightop Reebok shoes in HS, bought 'em myself with babysitting money. I loved loved loved loved those shoes.

Posted by: Heather in WV at September 3, 2010 9:41 AM

About the footwear thing:
An adult's social standing can't be ruined by the wrong foowear, generally. But in the teenage world, depending on the type of teens involved, it might damage one's social standing, at least temporarily. I work with middle schoolers, who can be very catty at times about stupid things like footwear. The wrong shoes will at least get you made fun of, which is hard to take when you are still developing your ego.
Good luck!

Posted by: Kristi at September 3, 2010 9:42 AM

Commemorative Edition of the Knitter's Almanac

You wrote a wonderful introduction. I think you were incredibly brave to write it and you completely summed up EZ and knitting in a wonderful piece!

Posted by: Knitski at September 3, 2010 9:56 AM

Dodgy footware maybe, but best dressed sockware definetly!

Posted by: Sharon at September 3, 2010 10:29 AM

Oh dear, the sneakers. At 16 ANYTHING can affect your social standing. lol

The socks are rockin'!

Posted by: April at September 3, 2010 10:33 AM

Your socks are gorgeous! I want to knit socks, I think I may have to teach myself over the winter when things are a little more quiet than they are right now.
I remember when it was very important to have the right brand of jeans. Levi's or Lee, with Wrangler 3rd, and anything else was fashion suicide (although you could get away with carpenter pants, even overalls).
Strange how that just doesn't matter anymore. at this stage I just want my pants to fit. And my kids are 24 and they're just happy is I take them clothes shopping occasionally.

Posted by: Barbara at September 3, 2010 10:43 AM

Social standing that can be sturdily stratified by the wrong colour of runners is not one to which I would aspire. Not wanting to belong to a club that would have me, etc.

That being said, it's tough enuf being a teenager. If the "right" colour runners are that big a deal for her self-confidence & comfort, I'd cave on the issue.

When my kids were in the back-to-school group, I'd show them the budget, and they were allowed one splurge item - the fancy backpack, the "right" shoes, the Hogwarts zippered binder, etc. - so long as the basic other items were also covered. Saved a lot of angst & focussed the "wanna".

Posted by: Vicky in Ottawa at September 3, 2010 10:46 AM

I love the socks. Love them.

And tell the sixteen-year-old that by age 22 (speaking as a 22-year-old) you won't remember what your shoes looked like when you were sixteen.

Posted by: Cecilia at September 3, 2010 12:35 PM

Stephanie, I am a huge fan. I love your books and your blog. I don't usually leave comments but I had to say this: those socks are BEAUTIFUL. And I'm not much of a sock knitter (though sometimes wish I was.) Anyways. BEAUTIFUL. bravo.

Posted by: Elise at September 3, 2010 4:33 PM

Seriously, you're not going to try using logic on a 16yo girl are you? She'll just end up doing the eye rolling thing and you'll end up frustrated.

Beautiful socks!

Posted by: Heather W at September 3, 2010 7:56 PM

Social standing? What's that???

(I'm pregnant with three kids aged 2 - 5 in the house. I'm beloved so long as I keep the pantry stocked with Goldfish crackers, LOL!)

Posted by: Teish at September 3, 2010 10:43 PM

Dear Stephanie,

I LOVE your socks and would like to buy the pattern, but do not want a paper pattern mailed to me. (long story regarding a cross country move... i have no address.) I would love to download the pattern, is this possible?

thank you for your wonderful blog and books, I've been a fan for years!


Posted by: marni robins at September 3, 2010 10:55 PM

I just made those socks too! Ok, I am just a touch behind on the 2009 RSC. But I love 'em just the same. And everyone thought they were really cool whilst in progress.

Good luck with that social suicide thing. My experience with teenagers is you can't win. You can convince yourself that you've won, but you can't win.

Posted by: Sarah at September 4, 2010 8:26 AM

A few years ago, I told my son he could have spiffy clothes, or vacation travel and secondhand clothes.

We've been scuba diving 3 times since.

Best of luck, there.

Posted by: fibersong at September 4, 2010 9:17 AM

This is the only sock pattern that I've knit multiple times. I've still not perfected the rosebuds, but they keep getting better!

When my daughter's asked about going school-clothes shopping, I asked them if they NEEDED school clothes, or if this shopping spree was more of a habit. They actually took a minute to consider it, and eventually admitted that they really only needed socks.

Posted by: Amy at September 4, 2010 12:39 PM

I stalked your pattern for a year, and was so happy this April when I was able to order it! I absolutely love the pattern, my socks are really beautiful. I used the colorway that was recommended. Thank you so much for writing such a beautiful pattern, those socks will be a favorite of mine this fall!

Posted by: Sharon at September 4, 2010 6:23 PM

Dirty trick to show those cute socks and then not put the pattern in the blog. Ohhhhh, we have to buy it--well, just because you make your living this way does not make it ok, does it? I mean, come on, we are your loyal readers, right?

Posted by: Sherry in Idaho at September 5, 2010 11:31 AM

Shoes are very important in adolescent years and they can make a statement that lasts a lifetime. I had totally uncool shoes one year but they became the fashion the next year and people still talk about how I was ahead of the fashion (30 years later).

Posted by: danielle at September 6, 2010 4:13 AM

Any item of clothing that does not fit the mythical current trend can mess your social standing. Just not permanently because as soon as everyone has whatever it is, it will change.
I would be sooo happy if any shoes that fit my DD cost anywhere near $40. She is a Ladies 8 Narrow. Wanna guess what that costs in a running shoe? The cheapest New Balance are about $100 ($70 on sale if I'm lucky). And remember, you need 2 pair for school. And it's my fault. Same problem, same size.
The saving grace was that the wheelie shoes and Crocs did not fit. It's hard to walk when your feet slide sideways in your shoes.

Posted by: Khym at September 7, 2010 11:38 PM

Youza, those are some beautiful socks! I especially like the diagonal motion on the floral panel.
Pattern going to be published soon?

Posted by: julie at September 8, 2010 3:46 PM