Thursday, March 1, 2012

I love this book . . . Socktopus by Alice Wu

I love this book.  I want to knit all the socks in it.
I even want to knit the 1 or 2 pairs that aren't quite my personal style.
 I know a couple of gals who would love to get them so they won't be going to waste.

Like Cookie A, another of my favorite sock designers, Alice writes a good pattern.
And a great sock book.
The first chapter is a simple tutorial on what goes into making a sock - all the choices a knitter has.
From fiber to gauge to fit and anatomy (of both sock and foot).
This chapter makes understanding how to custom size a sock
to your foot and yarn a whole lot easier.

I didn't really understand sock sizing.
I have large feet so I usually went up a needle size and maybe a yarn size too.  I didn't do any more thinking about it then that.  While this is OK for winter socks that are suppose to be cushy and warm in boots or didn't matter in sneakers - they don't fit as well in my regular shoes.  I want socks that fit better in my shoes.  I learned about negative ease and found that I was adding undue bulk.
I had been making my socks way bigger then they had to be.
The next chapter helped me put this new found knowledge to work.

Chapter 2 is where the real fun begins.  The first sock in the book is called "totally vanilla" It's a plain sock knit in any yarn you like.  I picked a yarn, did a gauge swatch, measured the ball and length of my foot, did the math and cast on.  I like that the first sock in the book is made to order.
And the sock fit perfectly in my shoes because it was custom made just for me. Yeah baby!
I like the way Alice fashions the heels so you pick up gusset stitches right off the heel turn and I love the toe.  My new favorite toe.  You'll just have to try one and see for yourself!
I will be making these socks again in many different yarns.

I think now when I look at a pattern I will be able to adjust for the weight of the yarn and my gauge and get a great pair of socks that fit right.  Not too big or too small.
Yes there is some math involved - don't be scared - its easy math.  

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