Friday, December 4, 2015


This has been a season of socks, not of quilting.  This is a surprise to me, but so be it.  The socks for the Dear One turned out just right. They fit him to a "T" hugging his feet from toe to heel.  The elongated "toe box" turned out to be just the thing for a proper fit for his foot.

This morning I've been working on fixing some holes in the soles of socks that I made and gave to my brother-in-law a year ago.  He loves his hand knit socks and wears them a lot in the house.  But they have "Berber" carpet, which is very hard on socks and soon wears holes in them.  So this week I said, "Give them back to me and I'll fix them for you."

I was surprised at how thin the yarn was--both evidence of wear throughout the year, but also evidence of the fact that I used "Step it Up" sock yarn from Mary Maxim rather than my favourite "Patons Kroy Sock Yarn" also available from Mary Maxim.  You can find that Patons yarn in Joanne's (Fabric store), in Michael's, and even in our local IDA in Alberta.

If you make a darn in the sole of a sock it won't be very comfortable.  A full reknitting of the sole is preferable.  So this morning I was figuring out the best way to do that.

I started by picking up and knitting 10 stitches on about the 2nd row after the cast on.  Each knit row after that I picked up an additional stitch on each end of the needle.  The purl rows were simply purled, including the first and last stitch.

I had a bit of trouble when I came to the straight part of the sole.  The beginning of the knit row worked well, but how should I handle the last stitch on each knit row? 

I tried several different approaches: pick up and knit the inner "leg" of the stitch together with the last knit stitch.  Or pick up and purl the inner "leg" of the first stitch in a purl row.  I went back and forth trying to figure out the best way to handle this.  You can see from this that not all tries were successful!

The line of joined stitches is not smooth!  In fact compared to the line of joined stitches on the opposite side of the sole, which was the beginning of the knit rows, this side is really rough.  

But look how nice and smooth the last few inches are!  I finally have it figured.  And it goes this way: Slip the last stitch of the knit row purl wise.  Pick up the left "leg" of the stitch on the sole of the sock with your right needle.  Knit these two stitches together through the back loops.  Turn and purl as usual.  You'll have a nice even join between the new knitting and the sole of the sock.

Music wise, life has been very interesting.  Choir is busy with Sunday services and now also midweek with Advent "events".  Orchestra is working toward a school concert on the 18th, designed to interest students in taking up an instrument.  And there's a separate "gig"--a rehearsal this Saturday morning and a performance this Sunday afternoon at a Bellevue Heights Baptist Church for their Christmas program.  I was asked to fill in for Virginia, who dropped out to be with her husband as he entered hospice care.  This will be a "one rehearsal only" situation, so I've put in lots of practice time to prepare.  Hope it all goes well!

Have a good week, and find enough time for quiet relaxation in the midst of all the season's busyness!

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