Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Sockerly, Potterly questions....

I sort of ran away with myself yesterday and made sample stitch markers. They are for my Hufflepuff Hogwarts-sock-swap secret pal, and my original intention was to make a bunch to decide which one I liked best, and then go back and make 5 more of that one. I made twelve total, six from Hematite beads, which have a metallic sheen, and six from black stone.

Here are the ones from Hematite. You can't really see the color - it is a silvery/gunmetal/black metallic.

And here are the ones from Black stone:

So, now, the questions.

1. They are hanging on a size one needle. The metal loops are big enough for up to about a size 5 needle, making them basically for socks to DK weight sweaters. Is that big enough, or would people really prefer larger ones?

2. If I were just going to choose one of these twelve and make five more to go with it, which one would you say I should pick to replicate?

3. If I am going to give one of these two sets, as a set of coordinating rather than perfectly matching markers, which set do you think is the nicest?

On to the Swatches...

Here are some slip-stitch patterns I swatched. I am thinking of picking three of these to combine (They tell a story.)

Here is a lace pattern that reminded me of the moving staircases at Hogwarts.

All of these are from Barbara Walkers Second Treasury. I have a few more questions...

4. Have you ever made a sock where you knit the top of the foot first, then knit the bottom, attaching as you go with K2tog at that end of each row?

5. If you did, did you find the place where the "Seam" occurs irritating?

6. Which do you think is the preferable sock - one with color patterns, or one with lace?

I thank you folks for any and all answers to these troubling questions...(Horror movie chord, sound of Voldemort's henchmen using the reductor curse on the door, scream....)


smariek said...

Oooh, both sets are pretty. It's hard to choose.

1. I think it depends on who you're giving them to; find out what they like to knit. Most of what I knit falls in the US6 to U8 size, so that wouldn't work for me.

2. Hard to decide on one, and I can't get a good feel for the two beads, they both look black to me on my screen. I think overall, I prefer the Blackstone set, but I think this has a little to do with my preference for the spheres rather than the cubes.

3. Again, I'd have to go with the Blackstone set.

4 & 5. N/A ... I'm still working up to knitting my first sock.

6. Oooh, hard to choose. I like both! I think it depends on the person too. (For example, I know my MIL would prefer something with colors, and she'd probably not notice intricate lace patterns)

Of the Slip Stitch patterns, I really think the Maze Pattern looks interesting. I also like the False Flame Stitch(?). I've done that lacy pattern as a washcloth ( :-) I really like it!

Jen Smith said...

Oh my gosh! how fabulous! I don't want to discourage my partner, but I hope it's you!

OK, selfish thoughts banished, now to answer your questions:

1. I rather assumed sock sized stitch markers would be the norm in a sock swap. I think up to size 5 is plenty flexible.

2. I very much admire the first two variations of the Blackstone markers. The first one would be great to mark the beginning of the round and then the 2nd to mark gusset decreases and/or lace pattern divider.

3. As a set though, I like the hematite better.

4. No I have not.

5. See answer to #4

6.The color work is amazing. Just wonderful, but I think I like the lace and cables just a bit more because it is so perfectly representational of the Hogwarts stairs.

And if You-Know-Who is after you, you must be doing something right!

limedragon :-: Harriet said...

Ooh, I like how you mixed the geometric shapes for the stitch markers! The top set looks the most cohesive, if you decided to keep them together. But my favorite is the blackstone third from right, very clean looking. I think the current size you have will be fine. You could always ask your spoilee if he/she has a preference. (Maybe they knit more hats and sweaters than socks?)

I LOVE that lace pattern, and you are so right, it matches the Hogwarts staircases very well.

Megan said...

I think your stitch markers look great. I like both sets, that is a tough choice. I would do the set as is instead of making all the exact same. I like when things coordinate as opposed to match exactly. I think I like the hematite just a tiny bit better because I like that particular stone. They are both great though.

Having a Knit Fitt said...

coordinating hematite but then I don't like matchy-matchy

colorwork but then I haven't made or worn any lacey socks


Marigold said...

IMO, I love all of the stitch markers. I think they're probably big enough (we're all knitting socks, right?) and I would give a varigated set. I like Hematite best, but that's just personal prefernce.

I like both of your swatches, but for the Hogwart sock swap, i'd probably go with the black and yellow, since the colors for Hufflepuff are really black&yellow together.

Oops, gotta go rescue my sock from a toddler.

Jennifer said...

I think the size of the stitch marker is fine. That's a smidge bigger than the ones I've been making for my shop. I like the entire set of Blackstone. I'd just send what you've made. I think a Hufflepuff will like the variety. As for the sock pattern, I think all are nice. Pick one that you personally enjoy knitting.

Margie said...

I made some markers last weekend and have been using one on my sock project. I've decided that I don't like the beaded markers for socks. They get in the WAY! I like my Knitpicks jumprings, which fit my size 1 needles all the way up to size 8US. I have some beaded stitch markers for large needles to use with felted prjects and I like the beads then. I think the sock tube is just so small that I'm almost always putting my hands on the marker as I knit. That being said, I like the size of yours, and I like the different types as a set. You only need two in a sock project anyway.

I like the lace a lot, but I also like colorwork. I put both in my sock, but I only put in a little bit of each. Less is more. You could make one sock lace and one colorwork and have Dobby socks.

Heide said...

I like the hematite stitch markers, but they look really neat with them being asymmetrical with each other. If the beads were all the same it would be boring. I do think that the two color socks are more Harry Potterish (new word), but the comparison of the lace to the moving staircases at Hogwart's is brilliant. I'm bummed that I'm not in Hufflepuff now because you can't be my spoiler, this stuff is gorgeous.

Lumie said...

I love the stitch markers.
1. I agree with Jen that stitch markers up to size 5 is a good way to go. I rarely use stitch markers in my sock knitting though (but I'm a freak so I don't count)
2. I love the first set.
3. I love the hematite markers
4. No I haven't
5. N/A
6. I really like the cable and lace sock pattern. I partially wish I was in Hufflepuff to receive the goodies. I can give Jen good vibes to hope she receives the nice things.

Cheryl said...

I am a Hufflepuffer and I am thinking we are greedy, just KIDDING, I would like ALL of the stitch markers...definitely a mixed set. I agree the black just looks black on the screen, but I have some hematite markers and think the blackstone would be preferred, as far as patterns, holey could not have found a more perfect lace pattern, I am extremely envious of that(there goes that greed again), I would prefer the lace, it is much too difficult to pick patterns they are so cool. OK, mixed Blackstone, lace, do you want my foot measurements again? :)

Lisa W. said...

Wow you sure can get a lot going on in one lil post there lady! 1) for a sock swap...smaller is better so yes the size is perfect for up to sz 5 needles 2) I like BOTH as sets myself because i like coordinating not all matchysmatchy...however, i personally like to make one marker in the set larger, more blingy, kind of the leader of the band as it were for remembering when you start a new row (presuming one is knitting in the round) 3) i prefer neither, they are both fab...but i love hematite due to its magnetic properties 4) holy cow the colorwork is wild! love all of the patterns! 5) the disappearing staircase pattern is the OK. lastly, i need your email addy so i can add you as a poster on the Elann Shawl Knit-a-Long. You can send it to me at the following midwifeknitsatyahoodotcom
see ya :)

Just A Knit Wit said...

Wow, too bad I’m not in Hufflepuff, those are going to be some kick arse socks.

Ok, on to the questions:

1. I’ve never used stitch markers for socks and I usually knit on 6’s or larger, so markers that small wouldn’t work for me. But if your partner likes to knit delicate lace, which is often knit on 5’s or smaller, than you’re all good!

2. I would say go with the blackstone, 1st marker on the left. It’s very pretty.

3. Again, I’d go with the blackstone. The hematite is almost a color you could use for Slytherin, due to the gunmetal grey colors.

4. Nope. But I HAVE seen a blog where a woman made an error in some striping and ended up cutting stuff, keeping live stitches on both sides, then using Kitchener Stitch to graph the two back together.

5. In the above mentioned alternate, you can’t even see the seam.

6. I think the colored patterns are BEAUTIFUL!

Amy said...

Lots of opinions.
I like the Hematite, probably because the Hufflepuff colors are rival (Georgia Tech) colors so I don't like them much anyway.
Love the lace, it is so representative of the stairways. You could always edge it in black or do a black/yellow stripe heel/toe to get the two color thing.
EZ has a sock with a removable bottom to replace for wear. This concept was improved upon in IWK 25 favorite knitted socks so I am sure it could be done.
Does swap date coincide with publication date?


knittingnurse said...

Wow, you did a lot of GREAT GREAT work.

1. I like having the smalled loops for the sock knitting needles. Bigger ones just end up getting in the way, for me at least.

2. If you were just going to make one kind, I prefer the first one from the left in the second set of markers.

3. I say go with the second set (the one with the black beads)

4. sorry, I can't help ya with this question.

5. ditto

6. I like the lace pattern, moving staircase pattern.

Joan said...

Your st markers should definitely not match. I use the round part of a 2-part toggle closure for larger sts markers. I wait for coupons at Michael's, Jo-Ann's to buy them.

LibbyKnitKins said...

WOW T totally awesome!!! And you know what I like about the stitch markers that match but dont? I LOVE that they are all the same colors but are not exactly the same.

Also I really like the wandering staircase pattern! are you making socks out of it? I hope so!


Les said...

Great swatches, T. You've got some interesting stuff happening there!
Love your stitch markers too! I like to have different ones in a set. There is one particular marker I always use to mark the beginning of a round ;-}, and it is nice that it is different from the rest!

CatBookMom said...

As others have commented, a size 5 needle is probably as large as you will want for sock knitting, so your jump ring size is fine.

I like the coordinated look, though as Lisa W commented, it's good to have one of a set be bigger than the others. It's just IMO, but the saucer beads, running perpendicular to the others, may be a problem, snagging on the knitting.

I love hematite, the sheen is terrific; but I favor the black stone set, probably because the markers tend to be more curvy than the hematite set.

I love the moving staircase design. I haven't knitted socks like those you describe, but I find I prefer lace over color work.

Pretty, pretty work, all of it!

benne said...

T, you know I'm sock-knitting and colorwork impaired but I like both socks. The colorwork might win by a nose since I'm dazzled by the colorwork and your skill. I like the hematite stitch markers, not matching and I think the size is fine. I'm not qualified to answer any of the other questions. ;-}

Grace Yaskovic said...

Beautiful bead work T I think your crafting is awesome

thanks for taking the time to post to me about my bad day I am so grateful for my yarn buddies!!!1

Tanya said...

1) I'm thinking that the stitch markers I'm making are for a sock knitter--up to, say, US4.
2)I think a variety of style would be good and I like the blackstone better.
4)no--like the ones in Fav Socks?
5)n/a but check out Grumperina's site if you haven't already
6) I LOVE the slip stitch patterns but I also like the creativity of the moving staircase. I think I lean toward the colors.

Good luck (ps I'm a Hufflepuff!!)