Friday, November 14, 2008

Working on a Sock Pattern

I'm still here...I'm working on my first sock pattern. It's interesting all the considerations I need to keep in mind as a backwards knitter when writing out a pattern.

The first thing I knew would be challenging would be to find a good division point for the instep stitches and continuing the pattern along the entire front length of the sock (from cuff to toe). Accomplishing this with an odd number of stitches in the pattern repeat meant I had to chart out the pattern for my backwards knitting first, find the cutoff point for the instep and the heel stitches, then rechart its mirror image for right-handed instructions. This was a pretty important step since it's not a symmetrical pattern repeat. After that, I went back and knitted two different size heel flaps and turned the heels with scrap yarn. One of the things I like to be able to write in a pattern is the exact number of heel stitches left after the heel is completely turned. So I needed to figure out those numbers.

I'm definitely going to have it test knitted. And the pattern will be available for free once it's ready. I was thinking about knitting it with Malabrigo sock yarn, but the shipment still has not arrived at Anacapa Fine Yarns yet. Maybe I'll use a couple of different yarns (I have green skeins of Shibui and Koigu are calling my name). I'll let you know when it's availabe in PDF for free download...hopefully within the next month. Thanks, Preita, for all of your excellent suggestions...like improving the chart symbols and offering more than one size!

There are lots of wonderful and helpful reference tools online that I've been using this past week. Here are a few:

Elizabeth Bennett's sock calculator

Heels by Number available on the Sock Knitters website

Marnie Talks tutorial on using Excel for charting cables

I'm terrible at keeping secrets like this. So now you know what I'm working on.