My current work in progress:

Seaforth designed by Alice Starmore, knit in British Breeds 5-ply Guernsey Wool on US 3 needles.


Ripping Yarns

I’m pretty sure I’ve used that blog title before, but it fits today’s post so, wild woman that I am, I am using it again. Woo!

Here’s my new sock-in-progress.

Diagonal Lace Sock 110807

Diagonal Lace Sock 110807

My companions from this past weekend might remember this sock, but it looked a bit different. I had about 6 inches done on the foot when I decided that it looked too much like another sock I’d done, so the other day I ripped it back to the toe. I adjusted the pattern and started over.

The yarn is Dream in Color Smooshy sock yarn in the “Strange Harvest” colorway. This is one of those colorways that really doesn’t look like much in the skein, but Boy Howdy! Does it ever knit up nicely! What looked like shades of mustard now looks like autumn leaves to me. πŸ™‚

Strange Harvest 110807

Strange Harvest 110807

I just love a skein of yarn with a happy ending.

When I’m designing socks I often do this — start the pattern, decide it’s not quite right, and rip back to the toe. I did it on the Serpentine Socks I just completed — but I did so after only one pattern repeat.

If I really had my stuff together, I’d actually knit swatches of the patterns to see how they looked before putting them in a sock. Well, I do that sometimes, but more often than not, I’m too impatient to get started and just dive right in. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. C’est la vie.

Time here for a coupla questions from the comments . . .

KimW asked:

Can you tell us your favorite sport weight sock yarns?

Happy to! I think my very favorite is the Fiesta Boomerang I just used for the Serpentine Socks. I also am quite fond of Chewy Spaghetti sport weight, and Zen String Serendipity Sport. All of these yarns are available at The Loopy Ewe.

Kath commented:

I like Lucy’s little catbed! Great color. If you don’t mind my asking, is that a store bought or handmade?

That’s Lucy’s “kitty pi” made from my free pattern here. I went back through the blog archives, looking for the post where I documented finishing it. I finally found it here.

Lucy sez:

Lucy 110807

Lucy 110807

“My Momma knows how to make a cozy warm kitty bed!”


  1. I’m confused…the Boomerang I have is worsted weight…I know the Baby Boomerang is more fingering weight…is there also a sport weight?

  2. I recently completed my Fleece Artist Seashore socks. I had to have that yarn after seeing it on your blog and now you tempt me with Serpentine and Strange Harvest. You are a constant inspiration (and enabler).

  3. So does Lucy not like her Cozy Cushion so much any more? I am cat bed shopping and was just curious….

  4. For a long time I’ve admired your Kitty Pi pattern, but my Grace refuses to sleep on anything that is actually intended for her to sleep on. Don’t get me wrong, she loves to sleep on knitting…just not the things I have knit as beds for her. I should totally knit the Kitty Pi and then walk around saying, “I sure hope Grace doesn’t sleep on this! I don’t know what it’s for, but it’s definitely NOT for Grace to sleep on!” I bet she’d hop right in. πŸ™‚

  5. I love the kitty pi, but I have a 12 lb and a 15 lb cat. Will Lucy let you divulge her weight so that I can guesstimate how much bigger I would need to make one of these for my kids?

  6. Gorgeous new socks πŸ™‚

  7. So, are you anti-knitting-the-same-sock-pattern-twice lately then? I mean, I like the the way what you’re knitting is looking like but are you feeling pressured to produce a new pattern with each sock you make lately? Don’t stress yourself out! Let the yarn be what it wants to be. Lots of my yarn tells me it wants to be Embossed Leaves and I plan on listening to it. =) Though I do have 13 new patterns to work up…

  8. Love the current socks! Very fall-y!

    I think its cool to keep knitting different patterns… Keeps things interesting, no?

  9. It is a pretty kitty pi for a very pretty kitty.

    I can see how that sock yarn wouldn’t look as good in the skein. It looks nice knit up though.

  10. That sock pattern and yarn are just beautiful, and it is nice to learn more about your designing process.

    I hope I’m not asking questions that you’ve answered before: For top-down socks, do you have a favorite cast on? For bottom-up, do you have a favorite bindoff?

    Despite decades of knitting, I’ve just knit a few pairs of socks (but countless sweaters), and they’ve all been top down. I fussed and used a tubular caston for most of them, but I see that many books recommend the tried-and-true (and much easier) long tail. Do you agree?

  11. Theresa in Italy says:

    You’re right, that color (Strange Harvest) doesn’t look like anything special in the skein, but once it’s knitted up—-Wow! I like this sock very much, too. (As if you’ve ever come up with a sock pattern I didn’t like, but never mind.)

  12. Hi Wendy, actually I was just wondering how you are feeling w/ your back now? Better than before the surgery? I was thinking that I hope you have gotten some relief.

  13. I totally agree with jules. My Puma also refuses to sleep on anything that is actually intended for her to sleep on. Cats!!

  14. This is a gushy I love your book comment, rather than a blog comment. Last summer my sister stopped by my house while driving from her home in Minnesota to her inlaws’ in California. She had just started knitting, and was on about her fifth garter stitch scarf since she was letting her teenagers do the driving. I felt sorry for her and although I had just gotten my copy of your book, I thought I better give it to her so she would have some other scarf patterns to knit on the rest of her trip. That’s a lot of driving on just garter stitch. She just called me this week and said that she is taking a knitting class and is still working her way through your book. What do you think of that? You not only saved her sanity but you kept her knitting.

    And I have finally found the yarn I want for your Grape Arbor shawl (I did buy myself another copy of your book but it’s not in here, sorry if I got the shawl’s name wrong)–STR Geisha in Rook-y. I think I will cast it on as soon as my yarn comes, even if I can’t spend much time on it until after Christmas.

  15. Now there’s *another* color of DiC I need! Thank goodness for stickies — I can keep a running list right here on my desktop πŸ™‚ I’m truly impressed that Lucy sleeps in her cat bed. My cat sleeps on my face. What am I doing wrong?

  16. Lucy looks so good in her bed which I made from the book, I think it’s the same?? But my cats fought so much over the first one that I had to give it to a friend.

    The new socks, will that pattern be available at Loopy? My pal is in love with Crotalus and now thinks these might be the new favorite. I tried for a switch to Heidi but it didn’t work. Please put it up. It makes my sock life easier, YOU design and I knit.

  17. I used to be an avid reader of your blog in the beginning of this year but then I got a job abroad and didn’t have so much time for reading blogs. But my Bloglines faithfully “collected” all your blog entries and waited patiently till I’m finally free to read them. Anyway, I’ve been reading solely your blog for three days now (ok, I clicked some links as well :)) and utterly enjoyed every minute of it!!! I must admit that I quite often tend to look at pictures only, but in your case, Wendy, I actually read every word πŸ˜€ By the way, thanks to your inspiring account of your Summer of Socks, I bought quite a lot of sock yarn today and decided to knit socks as Christmas presents for my friends. So, thank you and God bless you and your loved ones!
    Merle from Estonia

  18. I am blown away by how quickly you seem to knit a pair of socks and again by how many pairs of socks you have made! What do you do with all those socks? Just curious…..Love reading your blog. You are an inspiration.