Monday, June 19, 2006

No scarves, no butts, just part of a sock. And tattoos.

All of the socks I have knitted have followed the same pattern, only the yarn and needle sizes changed. I work K1, P1 rib for 9 inches, work the heel flap, turn the heel and work the gusset, and do the foot in stockinette stitch for 7-8 inches, then decrease for the toes, and graft them together with the Kitchener stitch.

Sometimes I make it real exciting by doing the Eye of Partridge pattern on the heel flap instead of the usual *sl1, k1* on the right side, and a sl1, purl back.

I have lots of sock patterns I've collected, but haven't made any of them because I make socks as a sort of therapy, helping to relieve pain, something I do when I'm doing something else, like reading (a book, or news or blogs on the computer) or watching TV. Or, reading and watching TV. Or in class, where I listen, answer or ask questions, and take notes.

So, keeping socks simple also means I can do other stuff while I'm making socks, which is why I haven't done socks with multiple yarns, or slip stitch patterns, or lacey cabley patterns.

After 3 years, I need a change.
Fortunately, I bookmarked Grumperina's Jaywalker sock pattern. I finally really read the pattern yesterday and found that, aside from the confusion of it being written for smaller needles than I usually use, and written for four needles (I prefer three), the pattern is just two rows! That means I can easily memorize it and make it while doing other stuff!

Since a new sock pattern is something special, it deserves a new yarn. Quite a while ago, I bought a couple of colorways of
Knit Pick's Sock Memories 100% merino sock yarn. I'm making this first pair of Jaywalkers in Rocky Mountain Dusk.

The chevron pattern is just starting to emerge, below the 1" of K2, P2 ribbing and the fabric is feeling absolutely yummy:

Along with covering my tired, worn, and numb (can you spell peripheral neuropathy?) toes, my socks also cover two of my tattoos:

On the left (which is really the right) you see my marine mammal/ocean sphere tattoo, and the calligraphy lines on the right (which is really the left). Not seen, because they dwell in different, uh, ecosystems, are my tropical rainforest (macaw on flowering tree branch) and temperate rainforest (stooping bald eagle) tattoos.

Some will note the absence of a reptile tattoo. I just never found a design I really liked. During a talk given, many years ago, by herper and animal wrangler Julian Sylvester, he showed a slide of a gaboon viper that was just exquisitely marked. Now, a design like that, running down my spine, from C1 down to my tail bone, would be quite lovely. Well, lovelier before I got sick and, uhm, old.

Ah, well, that's another purpose served by making socks and scarves and blanket squares and things: it helps sublimate the residual frustration of losing the me that I once was.

Missing your daily lizard fix? Check out Always out of step...

(And, yes, my mother would be horrified that I got tattooed. She probably is horrified, twirling around in her crypt, making room for a few more bodies. Hi, mom!)

June 21 Update...

Look! Sock update and lizard fix, all in one!

Here's a close-up of the sock, where you can see more of the Eye of Partridge heel:

By the way, you did know that you can click on any of the photos in my blogs to see the full-sized image, right?


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