Progress.

This week, I’ve been reading a lot about Progress (with a capital P) and modernization in the 19th century. Something about all the language of improvement, advancement, expansion, etc. made me pick up my toe up sock project again (despite the fact that I think I most enjoyed reading things that explored the uneasiness with ideas of modernity that existed alongside the narrative of Progress).

toe-up-first-sock

Strange light in my house this morning — these socks have a lot more green in them than you can see in this photo. The lights and darks are definitely pooling, and there is a big weird dark splotch near the top (a function of the calf shaping I’m adding rather sporadically), but I actually love the big chunks of light/dark that make stripes.

After several false starts, this sock is flying. This expansion of my sock-knitting skill set would not be possible without this tutorial over at knitting by bicycle. The heel does not involve wrapping, and for that, I am extremely grateful. I’m so excited about being able to knit tall socks without worrying about how much yarn I’m using, and I’m thinking that this is going to turn into an almost knee-sock! (Yay.)

eggs-and-bread

I took this picture last week: fried eggs, homemade bread, good coffee, and at least ten minutes with the New Yorker = a good day.

Back to work — hoping to reward myself with finishing this sock today!

two coffee mugs, a yardstick and a soup bowl…

…walk into a bar. Nevermind. Instead, they enable this rooster to attempt to determine (in an incredibly unscientific manner, mind you) if she has divided a skein of sock yarn into balls of roughly equal weight:

homemade-scale1

This was necessary because yesterday I was determined to start a toe-up sock, encouraged by this tutorial over at knittingbybicycle. If one of the benefits of toe-up socks is being able to use up all of your yarn, I reasoned, I need to divide my yarn so that I can take full advantage of this approach to sock knitting. First I wound the yarn, and then I wound a ball from the ball I created, thinking I’d just stop when they looked about even. But even though they looked even, one of them seemed a bit tighter, and therefore, heavier. But I wasn’t sure: hence, the contraption pictured above.

toe-up-tosh-11

Here’s what I’ve got so far. I’m following the tutorial for the 64 st sock, which might be a tad roomy for me with these needles (US size 2, 3 mm) and this yarn (Madelinetosh superwash merino in colorway pool), but I figure I’ll rib the whole leg if that seems to be the case. It’s a bit too early to tell. Here’s another picture of the sock:

toe-up-tosh-21

I absolutely love the striping, and the yarn itself is wonderful to work with — it is slightly thicker than the other sock yarns I’ve used, and I’m finding that these are moving along quite quickly.

Also, I’ve added a bit to my sock yarn stash. I couldn’t resist the gorgeous pictures of Malabrigo sock yarn over at The Loopy Ewe. This came in the mail on Monday:

malabrigo-sock1

From left to right: Malabrigo sock in Ochre, Boticelli Red and Alcaucil, and Cherry Tree Hill sock in Slate. This yarn is gorgeous. I was initially thinking that the darker shades would be good for boy socks, and I may make a dressier pair for my dad out of one of these skeins. I’ve ordered a few more options from Webs, and I’ll share those when they arrive. The particular boy I have in mind lives mostly in hiking boots, so something thicker (but still superwash) seems like a better fit.

Time for another cup of coffee and a bit of sock knitting before I tackle this morning’s pile o’ reading. The sun is shining here. Have a great Wednesday!