My mom had this saying. She brought it up in almost every conceivable situation, and she was always right. “With the right tool, you can do anything.” Pencils, shovels, tweezers, typewriters, 1972 station wagons.
A Year of Techniques gives me the feeling of a fresh start each month. Tools? Check! The new pattern arrives. (Rachel Coopey’s Antirrhinum Socks.) The yarn is in. (It’s in the Shop—Rachel Coopey’s Socks Yeah!) Got my needle situation sorted out. It’s Go Fever.
I’ve made socks before, but never with the Magic Loop method (which I learned while making the Hyacinthus Armwarmers, Project 1).
So this has been a new experience for me, this Magic Loop.
It’s very clever. A 32-40″ circular needle can be used to make socks. No double-pointed needles, no two circs. Here’s a quick tutorial that explains Magic Loop. It works best with a flexible cable, I was told.
In my Go Fever, I started these socks using a needle with a cable that seemed OK. Not terrible, not all that flexible, but plausible.
I motored away. (Color note: I went rogue on the cuff—Rachel Coopey’s pattern calls for a clever contrasting color for the toe, but I love the heathered, marled thing going on in her Socks Yeah! gray yarn, so I’m going to use it for the cuff, heel, and toe.)
I have no idea what color this is. gray there, blue here, always beautiful.
Before long, I noticed that the two moments when I shift from one needle to the other were looking bad. Ladders! That dreaded loose part when you haven’t yanked hard enough on your yarn. My cable was so stiff that it fought the yarn when I tugged on it.
Did I rip out all this? I did not.
Mom’s tool rule is a great rule to keep in mind when you’re knitting, because it’s easy to decide, “This seems to be the wrong yarn/needle/pattern/knitting-related gizmo/tool. Why, I think I need to head to the yarn shop for the right tool.”
Which led me straight to Haus of Yarn, where proprietor Meg Strong set me up with a size 1/2.5mm Addi Turbo Rocket, as pliable and agreeable a needle as any I’ve ever seen. It’s so flexible that I can get a tighter yank on my yarn.
It’s all going to be OK. Mom! You’re right! With the right tool, I can make a pair of awesome pink socks.
Finally, as happens whenever I go into that shop, I leave with the right tool. And a Vogue Knitting magazine. And a Quince & Co. pattern for Laila Raabe’s Deschains pullover. And, for absolutely no reason I can remember, this:
Surely this is good for something.
A fat ball of Kauni Effekt, the wonderful yarn from Denmark that shifts color super slowly. I might need this thing. It gets all different colored down in there. Might come in handy.
With the right tool, I can do anything. Once I can think up a use for it.
We’re talking about our Antirrhinum Socks over in the Lounge. Prizes will flow over in the Ravelry group for folks who start a pair of Antirrhinum Socks—enter and you might win some choice swag. Details here.