Tag Archive | sock loom

Putting the plan into place

Happy New Year! We’ve been in the new house for two months now, baby Sprinkaan is 6 weeks old, we made it through the holidays and life is beginning to settle into a more predictable routine, which means I can — fingers crossed — get back on here on a more regular basis. Earlier last week, I began going through my sewing room in an attempt to bring some order to the chaos. I’ve still got more work to do to get it organized to where I can find things easily, but in that process, I made a shocking discovery. Shocking, I tell you! Ok, maybe only to me.

A room of my very own!

A room of my very own!

Whilst cleaning, I came across several UFOs. That’s right, the dreaded UnFinished Object. I’m not surprised that these UFOs exist (I am a procrastinator, after all), just that there are so many of them. I found things I had completely forgotten about. So, in the interest of accountability, I’m posting them all here. Well, I say all; there may yet be undiscovered specimens.

Here's the story of a lovely lady who can't seem to finish what she starts

Here’s the story of a lovely lady who can’t seem to finish what she starts

From the top, going left to right:

  1. Rag rug. I even posted about this back when I started it and then promptly got bored of it and stashed it away. It’s wound into an oval purely for visual purposes because it’s much easier to see it as a rug this way than as the mile-long fabric braid that it actually is. The braiding is complete, as far as I’m concerned, now it’s just the awful task of hand-sewing all that mess together.
  2. Crochet gingerbread house. It doesn’t look like much, but all the actual house pieces are there: roof, front, back, and sides. I just need to finish all the candy features and assemble the thing.
  3. Beige peasant blouse. I started this last spring with the intention of it being a sort of transitional maternity top. That was effective. Again, all the pieces are there, I just need to finish the embroidery on the yoke and sew it up.
  4. Rainbow granny afghan. This is probably the biggest undertaking out of all these projects. I hate weaving in ends and granny squares produce a lot of ends to weave. Multi-colored granny squares make me question my sanity for deciding to embark on this in the first place.
  5. Front of a sweater. This sweater has a name — it’s from my knitting board book, but I can’t find the book yet and I don’t remember the name. At any rate, the front of a sweater doesn’t do me a lot of good without the back and sleeves.
  6. Axl doll. Another naked Axl. I started out all gung-ho on this after I finished the dolls for the girls, but then was struck with ennui when it came to sewing more tiny clothes. The thing is, I did all the hard work the first time and made little patterns so that any subsequent dolls wouldn’t be such a pain, but, eh.
  7. Knitting loom sock. Remember when I made Konik the little striped socks that he loved and wouldn’t take off for three days? Immediately after that, I began making a sock for myself. And then more interesting things came along… I actually haven’t gotten very far on this one at all and, to tell the truth, can’t remember which pattern I was using. I may end up taking it off and doing something else. We’ll see.
  8. Bunny dress. Rana and I had started a little sewing project together to make her favorite stuffed bunny a pretty little dress. We were on a roll and then we missed a few days and a few days turned into a few months.
  9. Embroidered baby booties. You want to know how shameful my UFOs are? I began these booties when I was pregnant with Konik. He’s 4. I need to get a move on if any of my own children are going to actually wear these. Sprinkaan, you are our last hope.

So here’s my New Year’s Resolution of sorts: for the next year, I will choose one of these projects each month and bust it out. Originally I was just going to randomly pull one from a jar, but obviously, some of these have a little more urgency than others, like the booties for example. That one will have to be the first… just as soon as I finish the little sweater I’m knitting for Sprinkaan. Maybe after that I’ll go with the jar idea. For some reason, it feels more likely that I’ll actually do these if I feel like it’s a surprise and not an assignment. I will (again, fingers crossed) be making other things during the next nine months. These items are, with the exception of the doll clothes, my “armchair crafts” — the things that I can work on in the evenings after I’ve put the kids to bed and just want to sit quietly. Even with the new baby, I’ll make time for daytime projects. So, when I begin one of these UFOs, I’ll post about it and you all can pester me hold me accountable throughout that month to make sure I finish it! Deal? Deal.

Sock loom tips

As you saw last week, I recently finished my first pair of matching socks on my sock loom! One friend had been having trouble with hers, so I proposed putting together a little photo tutorial. This isn’t a comprehensive tute by any stretch of the imagination, but hopefully it will help differentiate between the knit stitch and purl stitch process. If it proves helpful, I can do more later.

First, I want to apologize that I don’t have beautifully lit, high resolution photos. I live in a log cabin, but as far as lighting is concerned, it may as well be a cave. There are two useable windows and they’re both on the north side and… you see where I’m going with this. After a long, painful and frustrating photo session involving Mr. Gren and myself and a lot of contortions and bitter muttering, we managed to get a few pics that should more or less illustrate what I’m trying to explain.

To start with, I’m going to make the assumption that, if you have a sock loom, you already know how to cast on. This could very well be a faulty assumption. If so, leave me a comment and I can show you how to do that next time (although “next time” is going to have to wait until I get the current sock off the loom). Right now, I am working on the cuff, which is ribbed. Ribbing involves alternating knit and purl stitches. In this case, I am doing two of each; if you want wider ribs, you can make them 3 knit, 3 purl. When I was making my very first sock on this (which I had to redo a couple of times and then it turned out the wrong size), I had a lot of trouble remembering whether I was on a knit or a purl. I suppose in regular knitting you would use stitch markers or something or probably, you would just be able to see where you had left off. But with the loom, all your completed knitting goes down inside the loom where it’s hard to really see what you’ve done. After having to go back and count from the first peg several times, I got sick of it and figured there had to be a better way. My solution was to line the outside of the loom with a narrow strip of masking tape and then marking the two pegs that would hold the knit stitches. Since then, it has been much easier to keep my place!

purl (6)

So first, a knit stitch. Lay the yarn above the loop that is already on the peg.

knit (2)

I’m working on the third peg from the right.

Then poke the hook from the bottom of the loop up to reach the working yarn.

knit (3)

Hook the yarn and pull it down through the loop, so now you have a loop on the peg and a loop on the hook.

knit (6)

Pull upwards with the hook and the loop on the peg will lift off. Gently place the loop from your hook onto the peg. Ta dah! Knit stitch done.


Purl stitch is really no more difficult. This time, start with the working yarn laying underneath the loop on the peg (I didn’t get a great picture of this, so you’ll have to use your imagination). From the top, poke your hook down through the  loop on the peg and hook the working yarn underneath.

You can see the working yarn laying underneath the loop on the peg.

You can see the working yarn laying underneath the loop on the peg.

Pull the working yarn up through the loop on the peg, giving you a loop on the peg and one on the hook.

purl (3)

Now, for me, I can do the knit stitch in one fluid motion, but at this point in the purl stitch, I have to take the hook out to change the angle of my hand. But the concept is still the same. Pull upwards on the hooked loop until the peg loop comes off and then place the hook loop onto the peg. And that’s all there is to it.

purl (4)

Lifting up and off

Putting the new loop back on the peg.

Putting the new loop back on the peg.

Knit begins above, purl begins below. I hope that makes sense!