sock porn for knitting voyeurs.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

dead man's curve

At the knee...


Blame the shakiness on the kid behind me (toes to prove it!) who thinks its absolutely hilarious lately to run full tilt, face first, into my backside.

Both stockings are at the same point (more pics below!)-- just at the knee and I just didn't want to shoot both :) I finally sucked up the fear of shaping and just dug in and I'm happy I did. I didn't really use any charts or patterns at hand, just the measurements of my leg and trying them on as I went every few inches.

A few calf shaping pics...

Obviously on my leg :)

Shaping off the needles.
(Look for the "line" of raised stitches, the seam between them...)

I knit up the leg as far as I could, a bit after the calf muscle juts out. Then I measured the widest point of my calf (15") and compared it to the circumference of my leg at that point in the knitting (10") and figured a 20 st increase over the next few inches would do the trick, and it did. I then knit even for a few inches up the calf muscle, and then started decreasing for the knee. My thinking is that I want the knee with a higher amount of negative ease-- both to help as a false "cuff" to keep the lower portion of the leg stuck in place, and also to stave off any bagging that may occur there (the horror!) I took in 16 sts for the knee decrease, staggering them (10 then an inch even, now 6.) I think (in taking these pics) I will take it in even more.

As for the increases, I used the "faux seam" up the back as my guide. I knit to 2 sts before the seam, picked up the lower st on my needle & knit into the back of it, k2, p2, k2 & then lifted the st below and knit into the back (2 sts increased)-- every other row. I like the line it makes... I need to get a better pic of it, its a little overcast today.

I've kept notes on the construction and maybe will post them when they're said and done, with a huge caveat that they're written for my legs! :)

A little preview of my mind's eye... I think that I may be doing something a little unorthodox for the top edge of the stocking. Namely, I will be using a folded-over band at the top as planned, inserting a band of elastic inside for extra support. In addition (and knitting that band deep enough for this to happen with the elastic below), I think I'll be inserting buttonholes into the fabric I'm making (both side of the fold over top, so they meet) and overstitching them together for support. I have an old (cheap) garter from Frederick's from ages ago (what, you didn't secretly wear gartered thigh high stockings under your jeans in high school?!) that I think I may modify by adding buttons and removing the snaps-- the buttons will face outward, the straps will go inside the top edge of the stocking to attach. The buttonholes shouldn't interfere if I choose later on to buy a more expensive garter with metal snaps, but the buttons may be some good support/assurance that they will stay up.

Advice or insight on this would be appreciated, as always! :)

(which one is fresh off of my drumstick? the "miracle" of blocking!)

As for other sock progress, the striped "Simple Sock" only needs as few rows and a bindoff (and a mate!)


Dave asked me (innocently, right?!) where several of my half-finished pairs' mates were... (cloverleaf sock, entrelac sock). Perhaps I'll start working on pairing up my socks? (Did you know I haven't finished a pair in August? The very first month of the sock-a-month-along 2 and I've already failed?) Eek.

As for several of you who were concerned about me and my first handspun that I could do anything with (certainly not the first sneeze of roving off of my wheel, i tell you what!)...


I knew (hoped!) I had enough for a toddler sized hat, but didn't like the color... it looks nice, but a little too "layette"/babyish for my son. You have no idea how many times a day I am literally stopped in my tracks and the words, "he's a BOY!" come out of my mouth, as if I haven't lived with him for 2+ years and watched this progression every day. Anywho, I wanted to dye it up but after I plunked it in the water to soak before the dye (and posted my last post) I realized that it may not have been such a great idea-- this was my 1st time dying non-superwash wool, and I was also terrified of the yarn just falling apart in the water due to my lack of mad spinning skilz.


It worked, a little fuzzier than it went in but its okay. The flecks of color didn't dye but make the yarn look a bit tweedy... pretty neat. The dye is "gunmetal" acid dye from Dharma Trading - jacquard acid dye (?). I saw a hint of this color on Jen's blog a while back and liked it, I think it looks cool here too. I'm knitting the hat top down since I can never manage the right length (or circumference, for that matter!) in hats. We'll see :)

The pic is blurry as my camera is focusing on the beautiful stitch marker-- part of a set Heather sent me during my spinning supply search. I love them, they look so alien* and bumpy and perfect, right up my alley.

...are you still with me?? this will wake yall up!


The skein of Helen's Lace I won from the Vintage KAL! :) I have no idea what to do with it, definitely a shawl but something big enough to take advantage of this huge yardage (1250 yards, 4 oz.) I love the look of circular shawls, think I'll do a half-pi shawl in the red Schaefer Anne I have... but for this? I have no idea. (I saw a beautiful "more than circular" shawl knit from the Knitter's Shawls and Scarves book -- but don't know the yardage required or even if I could manage something like that.)

(you'll be glad you waited!)

Check out this *adorable* shirt from threadless!!

"recycling" -- new this week (August 28, 2006)

I just SQUEALED when I saw it, and of course ordered one. (And another, any guesses on which?) Threadless (if you didn't know) is a pretty rad concept; people submit drawings and art for shirts that are "voted on"-- winners are printed in small batches for human consumption. They also use American Apparel shirts for all of their women's shirts-- good deal at $17 each with a good mission (men's are $15 fruit of the looms, some AA sometimes-- not sure how they decide that).

(Full disclosure: yes, that's my affiliate Threadless link above! I wouldn't throw it around except that I actually love and bought the shirt, and thought some of yall may dig it too :))

* when my son was born and they handed me my little wet, red bundle of joy... he had these huge inquisitive eyes and every blink made them look larger and more amazing. he has a bit of an asiatic eye, pulled at the corners (does he look like me??!); the combination of his eyes and the shape of his face when he was born was just striking to me.

beautiful, because he looked just like the baby alien squid from men in black.


my mother was so pissed that i told *everyone* he looked like the alien baby from men in black, but a mother knows. alien, bumpy and perfect indeed.


Dave said...

Innocent? But of course. Nothing but. -blink- ;-)

Them stockings are looking delishyus. Your handspun came out totally yummy. The Helens Lace is so chocolatey! That shirt reminds me of some of the equipment in the deli downstairs. Can you tell I missed lunch today?

Dave said...

Oh, and seafood!!!

Melissa said...

Those stockings are looking awesome! So elegant and sexy. Good job.
The handspun looks great! Love the color.

hillary said...

Those stockings are really gorgeous. I also love the t-shirt. That is definitely something I'd wear.

Rachel said...

Actually laughed out loud at the alien baby reference.

Loving the stockings. Very sexy! The thoughtful elements(decreases towards knees, buttonholes, etc.)are what really make them wonderful.

I don't know what other shirt you ordered, but as soon as I get paid I am all over the STICKS OF SHAME! shirt. That's a must have for I am indeed most shameful in my fork usage at the Chinese resturants.

insaknitty said...

gasp! so nice! love the stockings! :D I can't believe how fast you're knitting. amazing. :)

lexa said...

I'm glad my youngest isn't the only one that does that! (Running in rear-end thing.)

Love your stockings! Too cool. I don't know if I'd have the patience for it.

When I was in the "process" of actually delivering my first son, hubby was there and my best friend. All that was in the back of my mind was Stewie off Family Guy. In the throes of agony I heard them talking about him and his football head... Needless to say if I could have gotten into a position to club them both upside the head I would have done so!

Matt....... said...

I have finally found a reason to knit socks; those stockings are fantastic!

Jennifer said...

Love the stockings, and I love the dye job you did on your first handspun!

b1-66er said...

well doc,

last thing i remember, i started to swerve,

and then i saw the jag slide into the curve,

i know i'll never forget that horrible sight,

but if i hadn't cut him off, it would've been me over the edge and he'd be singing this song.

i mean, it was his idea to have a race in the first place...

hey doc, how's my vette?

dead man's curve
, nash the slash

b1-66er said...

lots to chew on here.

first, the stockings are amazing. that you could knit something long that fit over your leg and not look like pat benatar is astounding. they are sexy, they are fun, they are teasing (especially with all the strange elements in the upper-most right of the on-your-leg photo).

second, it's hard to believe that the second picture and the first are of the same fiber. one looks black and the other grey. what color are these men trawlers, anyway?

third, and this is the big one, i know this is sockpr0n. i know we're all adults here. i know we're all voyeurs. but come on, that third picture down ... lessee, why does that look so FRICKEN FAMILIAR? in finnmärk that would definitely get a ban from the monarch -- and we're scandos for chrissakes.

fourth, the dye job is great. i love love the tweed effect. but why the hell didn't you use paas? or are copper wire loops getting on your nerves?

fifth, with that st. helen's lace, you should just either:
a) knit me a bathrobe
b) knit yourself a pair of footie pajamas.

sixth, not that it's any of my bee's wax, or anything, but are you married/partnered?

seventh, what the hell is that damn little space alien/earring/fishing lure that's in the shot with the cap thingie?

eighth, i either lüv the pr0n or the author. i'm not sure which.

always good, always fine, always just down the line,

Anonymous said...

the stockings are really, really beautiful! they would be nice made up in that helen's lace yarn . . . but i'm also behind a shawl

soapy said...

Those socks look GREAT!!! WHAt size are you? The handspoun is knitting up very nicely and dyed very well, I like it better !! See you knew what you were doing all along.. Now if you really don't have a clue what to do with the LL, I'll send my address....;o)))) heehee I LOVE the color!

Anonymous said...

Wow those stockings just knit on and on and on! Very nice work.
Alien baby gave me a chuckle:)

laurie in maine said...

5 YO nephew is going through Ramming Speed full body slamming as well it a boy thing? :) We gave him the "It's never okay to hit girls or old people" lecture. And by the way little man: your Aunt Laudie fits both categories!

Daughter came down in an elevator with the Fresh Prince @ Scholastic books a few weeks ago. Called to say how cool & collected she managed to stay. Said he was "even cuter in person & getting a little gray" :) Has a children's book coming out I think she said.

Try to screw up courage to do a leg shaping sock & fitted arch. Same daughter is home from NY now and thinks my 1st Pomatomus fit like they were made just for her: "THESE WOULD MAKE GREAT KNEE HIGHS!"

And how cute one of the best Choka contributors doesn't know what why the fishing lure/alien earring is hanging out on your knitting needle!! lol

Anonymous said...

oh man I can't wait to see the next progress shot of the stockings...they are looking great! yay you made it to the knee!

FairyGodKnitter said...

Great socks as usual, you make me want to abandon all my sweaters in progress and get back to the sock bin.
Have you seen the Wing o the Moth shawl at Your Helen's Lace would make quite an impact in that.
I called #1 Son Elmer J Fudd for the first few months of his life, Grandma was not pleased.

Stacey said...

Wow - and wow. Those stocking are looking great. I'm with you on shaping - do it as you go!

I saw that shirt and ordered one too! It is just the cutest thing!

I like the fold over hem idea with elastic - it should really keep them up!

Heather said...

Squeee!! *My* silly little alien stitch markers are on your blog! I'm honored! (And a geek, yes, but that goes without saying.)

Don't feel bad about the alien mom swore my eldest son looked just like Winston Churchill when he was born.

Annie said...

Cool socks! (all of them!) ANd I ordered that shirt, too! And I told my knitting group about it...very cool.

Anonymous said...

The stockings look fabulous. Your handspun came out great!

Laura said...

Your knee high lace sock is *gorgeous*. Just gorgeous.

Of course it's funny when your son runs into you full tilt. You just have to look at it in the right light. ;-)

Sarah said...

Yay! Spinning goddess you shall be too!

Glad you knit the hat. So cute.

Nice stockings. Very impressive to me, the normal sock knitter!

Liz said...

It occured to me yesterday that your updates haven't shown up in my bloglines for awhile. Since August 8th actually (this whole time I thought you were "quiet") Turns out, your blog is missing from my bloglines! I can't believe I missed that, who knows how that happened?

At least I have loads to read all at once :)

And I LOVE the stockings!

Anonymous said...

Wow, those stockings are gorgeous!! Can't wait to see them finished!

Leah said...

Those stockings are breathtaking!! I really love them!

Oh & your hat is looking great too. I love the way the color turned out!

Alyson said...

Aw, your baby was the cutest thing EVER, then.

(I'm heartened to see that babies can look non-human sometimes...I have maintained for several years now that if my baby doesn't look just like Boo from Monsters, Inc., I'm going to be sorely disappointed.)

The socks are both gorgeous, but that stocking! Oh my! (I love that your leg looks nine feet long in that photo - I need to start taking my pictures that way!)

Nice dye job on the yarn! It's class!

Anonymous said...

Those stockings are going to be damn sexy when they're done! Will they stay up on their own, or will you have to knit a garter belt to go along with them?

Anonymous said...

Your socks are turning out AWESOME! Good job!
And really Mom, don't ALL babies look like aliens!?!

Chris said...

Your stockings are stunning - it's been interesting watching them develop and following your design process.

I have a skein of Helen's Lace, too, and am contemplating the perfect pattern to take advantage of the yardage...

Hee hee - love the alien baby image!

adrienne said...

eeeee, I'm loving the tall socks! they are going to be so amazing! (and the Helen's lace is so pretty!)

Anonymous said...

Beautiful! Bellissima! As usual.

I would recommend against the buttons because the advantage of those snaps is that you can reposition them as the stockings stretch, either over time or just during the course of the day. With buttons, you'd have (gasp!) sagginess potentially all the way down the leg, especially at the knee and the ankle. ...THAT's why those vintage lingerie pieces always have snaps!

If you're having trouble finding them, just cut them out of an inexpensive vintage garter off eBay. You can sometimes find garter findings by themselves for sale on eBay as well.

Let us know how it turns out!

Zonda said...

The stockings are looking really awesome!! Love the colors in your other sock too! Good luck with the rest of it! :)

HPNY KNITS said...

wow, so much going on. I have been away and its hard to catch up with ya'. :-)
the stockings are fantastic. really inspiring to try knee high. the yarn for the hat looks nice and warm.

Anonymous said...

Wow! Too much fabulousness to even begin to comment. Just WOW and LOVE IT to everything!

Anonymous said...

Your last blog, from perfect alien baby boys, to recycled sock sheep that make you squeal, reminded me of Frankenstein, for some strange reason.

“I beheld the corruption of death succeed to the blooming cheek of life. I saw how the worm inherited the wonders of the eye and brain. I paused, examining and analyzing all the minutiae of causation, as exemplified in the change from life to death, and death to life, until from the midst of this darkness a sudden light broke in upon me- a light so brilliant and wondrous, yet so simple, that while I became dizzy with the immensity of the prospect which it illustrated, I was surprised, that among so many men of genius who had directed their inquiries toward the same science, that I alone should be reserved to discover so astonishing a secret.” - Mary Shelley

p.s. I dig the thigh highs. I didn't wear garters under my jeans in high school, but your socks make me wish I had.

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