Latest Socks (And Abortion)

Van Gogh – Vase mit Sonnenblumen

I made these socks from a ball of Opal yarn using the colour pallet from the famous van Gogh painting “Vase kit Sonnenblumen.” I liked working with these colours. I happened to find a golden solid that blended almost perfectly with the yellow in the variegated yarn.

Into the giveaway stash.

I’ve started the next pair – this one Opal Rainforest 17-4 Ply Sock Yarn – a nice combination of greys/whites/yellow/turquoises. The repeating pattern is a bit shorter than the Van Gogh pattern above.

As I sit knitting I have the TV on to one of the US news channels but I’m going to have to turn it off! Even though everybody’s known the result of SCOTUS abortion decision since it was leaked a month ago, it’s angering. What’s so terrible about that decision is where it takes women – not only in the US, but we will feel that decision ripple through Canadian politics – particularly since several of the Conservative leadership candidates are promoting the same arguments as far-right Americans are.

Today I read an article in The New Yorker that shows just how far-reaching this decision is. “We’re Not Going Back to the Time Before Rove v. Wade. We’re Going Somewhere Far Worse“. We are entering an era not just of unsafe abortions but of the widespread criminalization of pregnancy. That’s the subtitle. It’s a lengthy read but here’s the gist:

“We won’t go back”—it’s an inadequate rallying cry, only prompted by events that belie its message. But it is true in at least one sense. The future that we now inhabit will not resemble the past before Roe, when women sought out illegal abortions and not infrequently found death. The principal danger now lies elsewhere, and arguably reaches further. We have entered an era not of unsafe abortion but of widespread state surveillance and criminalization—of pregnant women, certainly, but also of doctors and pharmacists and clinic staffers and volunteers and friends and family members, of anyone who comes into meaningful contact with a pregnancy that does not end in a healthy birth. Those who argue that this decision won’t actually change things much—an instinct you’ll find on both sides of the political divide—are blind to the ways in which state-level anti-abortion crusades have already turned pregnancy into punishment, and the ways in which the situation is poised to become much worse.

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2022/07/04/we-are-not-going-back-to-the-time-before-roe-we-are-going-somewhere-worse?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=onsite-share&utm_brand=the-new-yorker&utm_social-type=earned

Everybody’s tired. I’m tired. But we’re all going to have to summon the energy to become involved in various political activities if we’re to retain a modicum of civil society and push back against the dystopian reality of “The Handmaid’s Tale”!

June 25/22 – the next day:

Here’s what Margaret Atwood has to say abut it all: Enforced childbirth is Slavery! Read it.

This image sums it up: “Let Us Pray!

The SCOTUS decision is so amazingly ignorant: “Why is right-wing Christianity the only religion afforded legal and political accommodation in America?

Sparkle Socks

Sparkle Socks

I finished this pair of socks on June 1. I just didn’t get around to posting the photo. You get a hint of the sparkle in the photo but if you click on the image, the sparkle becomes more obvious.

I no longer have the label so I can’t tell you what yarn I used for them. I think it might have been Opal, although I can’t find any sparkle yarns in their collection. I’ve had the ball in my stash for a while so it may be they no longer make one like this.

Carryin’ On

Fabric Squares For Another Wall Piece

Yesterday, I cut 7 1/2″ squares from the fabrics I’d collected from my stash to do a second wall art piece. What I see in my mind’s eye is something to suggest sky/sea/sand in two unequal panels: a wider light one, and a darker narrower one, joined by a dark strip graduated from lighter at the top to darker at the bottom. At the moment, the blocks are the same width – that’s because I don’t yet know where I want to place them – some of the dark pieces on the left will get cut into narrow strips and integrated into the fabrics on the right. When I’ve worked out colour placement, I’ll sew my two strips (I want a finished length of around 42″) then trim the one that will be on the right to 5 1/2″ – 6″. I still need some kind of lighter sand colour fabric for the top of the narrow insertion strip dividing the two panels – have to look for that today.

Latest Socks


Finished these socks two days ago – definitely bright! Into the “give-away” stash. I have a number of pairs of yellow socks in my sock drawer; no need (no room) to add another!

The Knitting Goes On

Latest Socks

I haven’t done a lot of sewing in the last weeks but I’m still knitting in the evening. Finished these socks two nights ago. I chose the yarn because I thought the contrasts were interesting. The pattern change kept me knitting – with some yarns it’s boring – but in this case it was “I’ll just knit another few rows…”.

These socks will go into the stash – I do have plenty of blue and green socks in my drawer that I don’t need to add these to my collection.

The new pair I started is going to be predominantly yellow – I haven’t knit any yellow socks in a while.

I Forgot To Post This

I finished these socks last week.

Yarn From KnitPicks

I’m always on the lookout for interesting sock yarn. From time to time the KnitPicks catalogue has shown up at my door. I bought four skeins of the “Static” sock yarn. This one – “Allsorts” has produced an interesting sock. the pattern repeat is very long – it’s deceptive with the second colour block being navy/pink whereas the first one was navy/white.

I have a couple of wound skeins of this yarn still to be made up. I like the feel of it, smooth, slightly finer than some sock weight yarns. Nice colours.

(Oh, and I knit the foot 46 rows instead of 50!)

Shortening Sock Feet

I have no idea why but lately the socks I’ve been knitting have turned out to be a bit too long to fit comfortably into my shoes – the foot is just a bit too long so it bunches at the instep or the heel pulls up instead of sitting comfortably in place. As a result I’ve stopped wearing those socks!

I haven’t changed the needles I’m using, the yarn is sock weight, my tension hasn’t changed noticeably, I’m knitting the same number of rows for the gusset, the foot and the toe. For some reason, however, the sock feet are coming out that bit longer.

The other day I decided either to give those socks away (I put three pairs in the give-away basket – they’re practically unworn) or to shorten the foot. I decided to give shortening the foot a try.

There are two possible ways of doing that – open the toe seam and unravel the toe shaping, then remove 4 rows and reknit the toe; or cut the foot, unravel a couple of rows each side then graft the two parts together using a 3-needle cast-off (also known as the Kitchener Stitch).

I decided to try cutting and grafting.

Let me describe how I do this:

  1. I start by picking up 32 stitches on one side of the foot and the remaining 32 stitches on the second side (being very careful to stay in the same row). I do this across the sides of the foot so I can begin and end the grafting process on the underside of the sock.
  2. Once I have all 64 stitches on two needles I cut a stitch on the instep, and start unravelling that one row one stitch at a time.
  3. I continue unravelling the selected row until I am able to separate the toe and the rest of the sock.
  4. I pick up stitches 2-3 rows from the raw knit edge on both sides of the toe. I unravel back to the needles. Before going further, I shorten the loose end, and weave it in so the first stitch remains taut and the yarn tail is out of my way.
  5. I carefully start grafting the toe to the sock using the Kitchener stitch, making sure I keep the grafting yarn loose. I work about half way across one side, adjust the tension of the grafting stitches; then carry on to the end of that pair of needles (and adjust the grafted stitch tension again).
  6. I continue on the second side to finish the graft, adjusting the stitch tension as I go along. I anchor the grafting yarn to the first stitches of the toe and the foot, trim the yarn and weave the loose end in.
  7. I have a finished, shorter, sock!

It takes me just under an hour to shorten one sock. Shortening the sock by unravelling the toe, taking out the 4 rows, and reknitting the toe would take at least 2 hours/sock. I’m ahead of the game by using the grafting method.

I’m now on my 4th pair.

To avoid having to do this in future, I’ve been knitting 4 fewer rows in the foot from the end of the gusset to the beginning of the toe-ing off. Although nobody has complained the gifted socks are too long, I know they must be because they’re too long for my size 8 foot! The socks I’m now knitting are 4 rows shorter and should better fit people who wear a size 7 1/2 to 8 shoe. The longer footed socks in my give away stash will be reserved for people who wear size 8 1/2-9.

Variegated Socks

Magenta Wool Socks

Finished these socks a couple of days ago. I bought the yarn at WoolWorks in Mahone Bay – Heidi Wulfraat dyes her own sock wool. It’s a superwash, and like all variegated yarns like this it produces a kind of repetitive generalized pattern that I find rather boring to knit but I liked the colours in the skein so I bought one.

Now these socks are finished. Someone will enjoy receiving them.

New Maroon Ombre Socks

Maroon Ombre Socks

I finished this pair of socks last evening, finally. I knit on them most evenings (since the last pair was finished) but I didn’t knit as much as usual so these socks have taken the better part of three weeks (I normally can manage a pair in two weeks.

I was drawn to the colours in the ball of yarn although I couldn’t tell that the pattern would evolve as it did with maroon strips and a repeating pattern embedded in in ombre with greys and golds.

A nice pair of socks, if I say so myself.

New Turquoise Socks

This turned out to be a subtle, but interestingly detailed pattern when the socks were finished. The hint of white separating the blue from the turquoise created a clear colour boundary.

The yarn was one of the remaining balls from the yarn I’d bought last year from Hobbii in Denmark. I didn’t plan the layout – I just started with the interior end that presented itself (I almost always work from the inside of a ball to the outside – that way the ball doesn’t roll around). It was just luck that I was able to begin and end with the blue leaving the turquoise element in a nice location on the leg and foot! I did have to match up the yarn for the second sock – but that’s usually how it goes. Because of the way the pattern worked out, I decided to keep knitting the toe in the blue, rather than change to the solid I used for cuff and heels.

I just might put this pair in my sock drawer.