Saturday, May 19, 2007


Okay, so here's why I don't blog about works in progress.
Remember those socks? Those awesome really cool space invader socks?
About one and a half socks in I decided, hey, why not actually try them on the boy?
(I think you can see where I'm going with this.) They singularly, spectacularly do not fit. The fair isle portion (which if I do say so myself, is a particularly well done fair isle portion) is still too small to fit over his heel.
This I don't understand. How can the boy have such a big heel? They will absolutely fit around his ankle if he could just get them on. But...he must have the biggest heel in the world. We tugged, we pulled, I had a brief image of the fair isle snapping and spilling space invaders everywhere. It was to no avail. I tried them on over bulky socks to approximate the size of his foot, and they were still easy to get on. He just really has a big heel. And to think he's gone his entire life without knowing how serious this could be.
So now, here I am, one and half socks in, asking myself, and the socknitters group, "Now what?"
The correct answer of course, that all the sockniters tell me, is to reknit. I find this concept horribly painful. Reknit two entire 6" fair isle cuffs and one large foot? I just...I don't know if I could force myself to do it. The thought of ripping all that work petrifies me.
There's still a problem with re-knitting. I can't just make them bigger. If I make the cuff big enough to fit over his gargantuan heel, they'll fall down on his normal-sized ankle. That clearly won't work. I have thoughts on how to fix this, but consider my other crazy idea.
The crazy option that I am entertaining is to steek them. Do people seriously steek socks?. But if it goes bad, I'd be no worse off than re-knitting. Well, I'd be down one skein of sock yarn, but after all the work I've put into those socks it would be worth it on the off chance it works.
And whether I steek them or not, when these things finally get reworked, I think it's going to have to be with ribbed panels. I can't think of any other way to get it to stretch over the heel without adding serious width to the ankle.
What does this have to do with blogging? Well, if I hadn't already put it out here, I could hide it in the corner for a while. You should see all the hideous, half-attempted projects I'm hiding from you. Also, a few decent ones. But now that I've blogged, I'm forced to confront my problem right now. I can't cover my ears and go "la la la," right now like I usually would. I guess it's not all your fault. The boy is really excited about the socks and wants them as soon as possible.
But...steeking? Ribbed panels? Can I do this? I don't really know what my other options are.


Knitting Bandit said...

Bummer!! Maybe I'd be condiered a "lazy" knitter, or "stubborn", hmmm there's got to be a more positive word, but I would not re-knit and I would not steek. I would finidh the socks, give them to someone else and make a second pair modified for super large, troublesome heels! If you're afraid the boy will be upset waiting that long for his socks, put the almost finished pair down and just start his pair. Maybe someday you'll pick up and finish the first!

krissuthe said...

I read something yesterday about doing a double-steek on fair isle at You might want to check that if you are still considering steeking...

Your Secret Pal said...

I would be afraid to steek a sock! If it were me, I would--dare I say it--frog then reknit. I would probably keep the ribbing the same and increase the number of stitches below it to make the sock bigger and make sure that any yarn carried on the wrong side is done so very loosely! Good luck!

I mailed your surprise package on Saturday via Priority Mail so hopefully it will cheer you up if you are feeling frustrated!

Margaret said...

I'm disappointed. I left you a long message the other day and it didn't get posted. Do you need to approve it first?
Thanks, Margaret

Margaret said...

OK-I've knit these socks and I feel your pain. Here's my recommendations:

1. The rib, as shown, is not very elastic. (I modified and used a regular rib in horizontal stripes.) Check to see if that's the main problem. If so, rip off the cuff and add on a new ribbed cuff.

2. I tried adding some ribbing between the fair isle figures, like you are thinking about. Believe me, it doesn't work. The inserted rib has no elasticity (because of the yarn you are carrying between figures?) and it just looks ugly.

3. I vote for knitting bandit's suggestion.

cookie said...

Yikes! That's how my first attempt at fair isle socks went. They were beautiful, but I couldn't fit them over my heel to save my life. It was because the fair isle is so inelastic it didn't stretch at all. I was really sad and ultimately just didn't finish them. I think that yarn is a tangled mess somewhere now.

I don't know about steeking.... How would you handle the heel? And the seam might not be comfortable in shoes, depending on where it is.