Thursday, February 7, 2008

A Sock Riddle

What should you call a hat that you wear on your feet
When the wind stirs the waves and the pattern is sweet?

The answer is simple, and yet not so simple.

It all began with the Beaufort Hat designed by Knititude and knit up – very nicely, I might add – by my neighbor Kat, who happened to mention that it was a snug fit and that the child's size, which specified a 60-stitch cast-on, had been found to be waaaaay too small by many knitters. What caught my attention here was the number '60.' That's a sock. To a sock fanatic, of course. And the stitch pattern is lovely.

But I noticed that the wavy bits seemed to spiral slightly toward the top of the hat. And I wondered if that was the result of the decreases for the crown or something else. I downloaded the pattern and had a look. Didn't see anything that would cause it to spiral. Some discussion ensued as to whether the pattern would spiral around the leg, and if so, how far.

The ultimate test was to knit the darn thing, so I grabbed some Lisa Souza Sock! out of the file drawer in which my sockyarn stash lives, whisked a set of 2.25mm DPN'S from the wine glass they customarily inhabit and cast on. I hurried through the ribbing, impatient to get to the actual pattern. After a few pattern repeats, things began to look interesting. And by the time I arrived at the heel, well, see for yourself -----

I didn't dare continue the pattern onto the instep, thinking it would wrap around the foot and cause all sorts of trouble, so I reverted to the 3X3 ribbing, which I guess I will carry forward to the end of the toe.

The second sock will have its own issues. Apparently the direction of the spiral can be reversed. I'm tempted to do that. It won't really matter which sock is the left or the right; they will both spiral out or both spiral in. Sounds too fun to resist.

So these are them. The nameless socks. They can't be Beaufort socks, because that's a hat. Normally I don't have any trouble tagging a name to a knitting project, but this one is giving me grief. Everything I come up with seems to be associated with a well-known pattern, and I don't want to use something that will lead astray a Googler. Waves, wind, ocean, spirals, swirls . . . . Aaaarrgh. I feel as though there is some madly original concept just out of reach.


Delighted Hands said...

WOW, I am impressed-looks great and a trophy to your knit-how!
Thanks for sharing the story with us!

beverlyanne said...

Hi Wool Enough. I am glad you like Bandersnatch. It is ultra comfortable to wear, not floppy, not binding. It stays in place.