FO: Berkeley Socks

Pattern: Tropicana, from MagKnits, by Sabine Riefler.

Yarn: One skein of Koigu KPPPM in P319 (pale purple and orange), and one skein of Koigu KPPPM in P113 (peacock) from Article Pract, in Oakland, California. Each skein is $13.50, so $27 for two.

Needles: Inox 8″ DPNs, size 1, also from Article Pract. They come in a set of five; I lost one the first day. I prefer the Susan Bates DPNs, which are shorter and slicker, but yarn stores seem to only carry Inox.

Project began/ended: December 28, 2007 to March 15, 2008.

Notes and Modifications: 

Notes: First, a little info about the name of the socks. Even though Article Pract is in Oakland, I kept thinking it was in Berkeley, since I seem to think all of the East Bay is one big entity. A couple of years ago, when Adam and I went to visit my family, we ate at Pizzaiolo and I was like, OMG, this pizza place is next to a yarn store! But unfortunately, it was closed, which made me sad. So, this past Christmas, when I was having lunch with a friend who had eaten with us at Pizzaiolo, I was like “I need to go to that yarn store.” (This is the same friend who said, “I thought when you said you started a knitting blog, you meant that you were going to use knitting as a metaphor for life; I didn’t realize it was actually going to be about knitting.”) Anyway, I also think the colors are Very Berkeley: Rainbow! Hippy! Vaguely ethnic! Earthy! Peace-loving!

Modifications: The first and most obvious modification was that I striped two colors in the pattern. This was an idea that I got from the many many chevron scarves floating around the internet that use this same feather and fan pattern, and specifically, from’s chevron scarf, aka the scarf that inspired many. I picked two colors of Koigu that I thought would contrast well; the final effect is a little weird, but I do like them. I think ugly colors of sock yarns have a special siren call for me.

The other modification I made is that I started with 66 stitches in a k2, p1 rib, and then I decreased immediately to 55 stitches to begin the pattern. After a few rounds I decreased again to 44 stitches to finish off the rest of the sock. (You can sort of see how I tried two different methods of decreasing–one from the outside in of one repeat and one from the inside out of one repeat above.) This turned out to be a bad idea.

It would have been okay if I had made the sock a little longer, closer to 7″ or 7.5″ instead of 6″, but I freaked out due to the short yardage of Koigu, and began the foot after 6″ of leg. (Also, I was kind of mad, because I had paid almost $30 for this yarn, and I think that buying another skein of yarn would have made these super-expensive socks, only suitable for black-tie events.) In fact, I actually had some yarn left over, so I could have made the leg a little longer, but the way it is now, it kind of puckers and puffs out around the top. Also, the ankle area is tight, but I’m hoping that is going to stretch.

Photo shoot notes: While these photos were being taken, Laura Bennett, Project Runway Season 3 finalist, her husband, and her children were frolicking in the background. I thought about asking her to pose with the socks, but Adam was like, “Um, after she’s seen you wearing them?” And then I realized that asking a reality show celebrity to hold your sweaty socks might be good blog fodder, but potentially really weird behavior.

Posted in Finished Objects 2008, Socks, Uncategorized at March 15th, 2008. Trackback URI: trackback

6 Responses to “FO: Berkeley Socks”

  1. March 16th, 2008 at 12:33 am #Stef

    I really like the striping effect! Now I want to try it on a pair of my own.

  2. March 16th, 2008 at 10:39 am #Joan

    I really like these! I noticed the chevron scarf socks connection immediately–and Laura was one of my favorite all-time PR contestants.

  3. March 18th, 2008 at 9:54 am #lekkercraft

    I love the unexpected effect that striping two color-shifting yarns always has, and that’s a really cute sock pattern.

    How fun to see Laura B. and her many children! I’ve gone by Daniel Vosovic a few times. I think I saw one other guy once too, but at the time I was convinced we went to high school together.

  4. March 20th, 2008 at 5:24 am #Melissa

    I LOVE these socks — they’re great!

  5. April 24th, 2008 at 2:12 am #Emily

    Those socks are beautiful!

  6. April 27th, 2008 at 11:51 pm #New York Minknit » FO: Spiral Socks

    […] pretty high. It’s also nice and warm and wooly, which I liked. (Koigu, which I used for my Berkeley socks, felt oddly crisp, and un-wool-like. However, Koigu feels great on the feet, so who knows?) The […]