I feel like it’s time for an update on my Kaffe Fassett Big Flower Jacket, but you’ve gone and got me all het up about the One-Sock Knitalong. I am strictly an Option Three participant. I knitted one pair of socks, baby sized, at a Cat Bordhi workshop we attended together somewhere back in the mists of time. I did start a pair of red men’s socks, that time when we were trying to persuade Stephen Colbert to do something by sending him socks. (It possibly made sense at the time, something to do with the International Olympic Committee.) My first Stephen Colbert sock never made it past the cuff, and I unraveled it to harvest some granny square fixings. Bottom line: I have no abandoned sock UFOs (Option One), and I have no random souvenir sock yarn lying around (Option Two), so I’m going to go to the yarn store (woe is me) and get some sock yarn and make some socks from fresh, new ingredients.
Corner-cutter and shirker that I am (or aspire to be), I’m going with footie socks. Here’s a fun fact about Most Moisturized Mom (my mom aka Mrs. Lill Gardiner): I have never seen her go barefoot. I believe she takes her shoes off to bathe, and that’s it. Her feet are like babies’ feet, soft and pink. She also forswears wearing shoes–even sandals–without socks, again for the sake of the dermatologic integrity of her feet.
This is where footie socks come in. I am kind of scarred about footie socks, to be honest. Mom has all manner of footie socks for all styles of shoes. Her credo is that you shouldn’t SEE the footie socks, but they should most definitely be there. Mom’s top drawer is a World of Footie Socks. “Nude,” white, black, sheer, opaque, low-cut (yes there are sexy low-cut footie socks that allow a peek of toe cleavage), terrycloth ankle socks (for jazzercizing and whatnot)–a footie for every occasion. She wears footie socks with her house slippers. (Think about that. At some level, it’s performance art.)
A loving daughter’s natural rebellion explains why I go barefoot whenever possible, and my own feet are frankly Jurassic.
Anyhow, I’m taking advantage of this little knitalong of ours to work out my deep-seated psychological issues with footie socks. It’s time to be an adult, put away adolescent fractiousness, and face up to the undeniable truth: footie socks are way less knitting.
The footie sock pattern that has captured my imagination is Saturday Matinee Socks, a newly-released pattern by Mara Catherine Bryner. (Mara is the designer of another popular footie sock pattern, Rose City Rollers, a free pattern that I may cut my sock teeth on.)
Cute, huh? By complete coincidence (or divine intervention), the Saturday Matinee Socks pattern is 50 percent off this week.
So there’s that decision made. Happy sockalong, everybody!
Big Progress on Big Flower
A quick update on my Kaffe Fassett Big Flower Jacket: I’ve reached the separation point for the armholes, row 74 (of the chart’s 120). This is big, a moment to be savored.
It’s hard to get a picture that shows the scale. People have this problem with the Grand Canyon.
I’m not gonna lie: knitting this style of intarsia is work. This particular pattern adds two levels of difficulty to the baseline looniness of intarsia: the constant changing of the background stripe color, and the double- or triple-stranding of yarns required to achieve those stripe colors. There’s a lot of stopping and starting, which interrupts the rhythm of the knitting. Knitting this jacket has made me realize how much the pleasure of knitting is tied, for me, to that rhythmic, repetitive groove. To enjoy working this way, I’ve tried to reframe what knitting is all about. And the analogy I’ve hit upon is tapestry weaving. There’s a lot of stopping and starting in that ancient, elaborate process.
Here’s a video on the Gobelins tapestry weavers of France. Around the 6:13 mark, the weavers are all set up and really weaving. Bobbins galore, mirrors. It’s really something.
Something not entirely unlike knitting an intarsia design by Kaffe Fassett.
P.S. No tapestry-themed YouTube dive would be complete without The Animated Bayeux Tapestry: