Wednesday, February 27, 2008

One MORE reason to love my Hub

He brings me nice treats now and then. :) Hub has been traveling a lot lately and was in fact gone most of last week. He was gone again yesterday, but only for a quick day trip. He stopped in at a yarn store and picked this out for me. It's Manos del Uruguay's newest yarn, a Merino and Silk blend. It's very pretty. Hub choose the colors because they would go with both my plum and red coats. When I got my new plum colored winter coat I tried to find something to match to make some mittens and a scarf out of, but it's proved to be difficult. He remembered. How's that for thoughtful?! And he picked up some handmade dark chocolate covered raisins at a country store he always stops by. I have no resistance to these. They are already gone.

With Hub being away knitting hasn't been moving very fast. That and I've been experimenting. February's SKA challenge was to try new heels. Well... that means they don't always fit. For some reason or another I really want to find a short row heel that will fit me. I had the idea if I added in an extra 10% of stitches to the heel that it might work. Often people say to work the heel on 60% of the stitches dividing it 40-60, but this wasn't enough for me. So I thought why not work it 50-60? That way the instep wouldn't be robbed of any stitches. It was a good idea and I think it would work for a lot of people, but it was still a bit too snug for me. Darn! I think you have to be more in proportion for this to work. I just have a thicker ankle and a narrow foot. And my poor heel is right in the middle. It's just a little hard to work.

So here it is looking lovely... on my second try... first was too pointy. Second, too small.

Then this weekend I came down with a bit of a cold. It doesn't seem to be hitting me full on. First I was achy and tired. Now I have congestion. But not enough to be really sick... just enough to be annoying. I keep thinking 'am I sick or not?!'. Anyway... I wanted comfort knitting and something that would work. So I turned to good old Nancy Bush. First I attempted the Welsh Heel. But it's just plain weird. It has yarn overs in the heel turn. So there are these little holes. I didn't like it. Rip! Then I turned to the Dutch or Horseshoe Heel. Ah... yes, here we go. It's a little different in the construction and I'll admit at first I tried to alter it a bit because I didn't think it would work the way I wanted it to. Um, yes, I had to rip it out. The second time I actually followed the directions. And guess what... it turned out perfectly. That Nancy does actually know what she's doing. (ha ha, snort)

I've lost count of how many times I have ripped and knit this heel. All I have to say is that this yarn is VERY forgiving! It's held up just fine and you can't even tell I've abused it so much.

The Dutch heel is very square. The flap is a little longer than a usual flap. I was thinking it would be too big even on me, but after I turned the heel I saw the reason... you need it for this sturdy square little heel turn.

You know how you usually have a k1 or a p1 after the dec stitch in the heel turn. Well you don't have that here. So all the decrease stitches line up and form a sturdy little square.

This also makes for less stitches when you pick up the gusset and start going round again. So the gusset decreases are spaced out between two plain rows. I kind of liked that part... the less decreasing that is.

So anyway... the socks and I are at peace again.

I've been swatching for some exciting new projects! And no, they are not socks! I've been strong armed into a KAL. Well, maybe not strong armed... but coerced. lol!


SJ said...

I'm glad you found a heel that works for you! That heel is actually one of the few from Nancy Bush that do not work with my heel (I think my heels must be kinda pointy), but I did enjoy the construction of it.

Hattie said...

You must have the same flu/cold thing that I've got. And now the kids are getting...

Love that yarn so much and that heel is really cool! I've been wanting to experiment a bit with heels and toes to see what else is out there.

Yarn you're hubby got you is GORGEOUS.

Danielle said...

Way to go, hubster!

Jill L said...

I like how you heel turned out. I am so boring -- I just do the same afterthought heel everythime. What can I say -- it works for me. I love they arn your friend gave to you!

abunchofus said...

Sorry you're not feeling well! Hope you feel better soon!

What a great hubby! Gotta love 'em when they do nice things like that!

Love that sock yarn. I've never heard of that heel but I'm new to sock knitting!

Miss T said...

Cool heel, I'll need to try that on my Fred Flinstone feet.