Monday, 27 February 2012

adventures in crafting sweet tomato heels, part 1

I'm on a bit of a sock knitting binge at the moment. The thing I love about hand knit socks, aside from feeling ridiculously amazing on your feet, is how quick and portable they are to knit.
I recently purchased my very first skein of Noro Silk Garden Sock. After seeing this project on ravelry I decided I needed to have me some stripey Noro socks too!
I split my skein in half and am knitting from the two separate balls, alternating every 4 rows. Watching the colour change is enormously addictive and I powered my way from toe to heel turn in the first day.
So I went ahead and knit a short row heel. I wanted the aesthetic of a square shaped block of colour at the heel and also the short row heel is extremely fast and simple to knit. Gotta love that! Try on the sock once said heel is done and...what the? It looks like crap, it's waaay too snug and the end of the heel sits so low that I'm hardly going to get the nice little square that I was aiming for.
I figure there are a few factors creating issues here. Firstly: I'm knitting at a larger gauge than usually recommended for socks. Why? Because I'm an idiot. Truthfully, All my smaller needles were in use and after swatching I thought the resulting fabric on 2.75mm wasn't too bad. Stretch that fabric around your foot though and we have another story. So, my heel issues could be the result of too few stitches to begin with.
I start toying with some ideas: mini gusset, work the short rows over more than 50% of the stitches etc. I turn to my fellow ravellers for some advice and of course someone suggests Cat Bordhi's A-MAZ-ZING new 'Sweet Tomato Heel" or STH for the cool kids.
I start looking at some pics of the STH and think 'Perfect!'. It has the exact look I'm going for, It wont interfere with my stripes at all and it's just plain awesome! But none of the patterns have been published individually.
Of course, Cat has kindly provided a video tutorial on exactly how to go about crafting this exquisite heel. So I watch, and I'm sold!
So off I go to fiddle with this innovative idea and see what becomes of Noro Stripe sock number one. Will the heel fit? Will it be perfect aesthetically? Will the gauge drive me up the wall causing me to frog this entire sock and start again? Stay tuned folks.

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