Like the socks I started a week or two ago, which have been progressing apace. It's amazing how fast they go when I don't reserve knitting time to being stopped at traffic lights during rush hour. But I digress, slightly.
I more often than not prefer toe-up socks: I make a small skinny garter stitch rectangle, pick up stitches all around the edges and alternate knit and purl rounds, increasing at each corner until I have enough stitches. The toe is cushy and stretchy, there's none of that pesky figure-eight cast on that's so tedious, or the provisional cast-on that then has to be undone as in the case of short-row toes.
For reasons too complicated to explain (I just wasn't in the mood) I decided on the more traditional cuff-down approach, which in my case consists of a garter stitch band usually about 24 stitches wide with as many ridges as the number of stitches my sock will need, either grafted together (if my cast-on left me a long enough tail and if I'm in the mood) or a 3-needle bind-off joining cast-on to current row. Pick up stitches along the edge where the live yarn tail is, work a garter ridge because it's pretty, and then go.
In this case, "go" translated to a 4x4 garter rib. I was a little concerned that the yarn was a little thinner than most of my old favourite sock yarns (like Trekking or Regia 25/75 blends), and I wanted a stitch with a bit of give, rather than draw-in, as in the ill-fated socks which I described in a previous missive.
My favourite heel is the short-row garter stitch heel over two-thirds of the stitches. It fits well, is comfortable and I like the way it looks, especially in variegated yarns.
All very well and good, so I worked my lovely heel over two-thirds of the stitches, and as I returned to working in the round, I realised that oh dear, I hadn't centred my heel on the stitch pattern. You can't see it all that well here but trust me, it's not centred:
Actually, you can see it pretty well, can't you?
No problem, I can do anything where knitting is concerned, I'll just make the ribbing do a bit of ziggy-zaggy, ending up centred on the foot, thereby hiding my blunder.
So I did, for almost an inch, except that I forgot/wasn't paying attention/was too caught up watching The Bourne Identity with my 15-year-old and I ziggy-zagged all the way around. Yes folks, on my sole. On the sole of the sock, that is.
No problem, I'm a whiz at fixing mistakes, and besides, Phreadde gave me this absolutely gorgeous very tiny crochet hook, just the PERFECT size for re-laddering all those garter bumps on my sole.
It must have taken two hours (subjective time: fifteen weeks) to ladder about 20 stitches worth of bumps, and it wreaked havoc with my pretty gauge (yes, I know, it'll even out with washing and wearing), and it turns out that it's quicker and more attractive to just rip out ALL those wrong stitches and just re-knit those partial rows.
But all's well that ends well, as I'm about to start the toe.
(No, that's not a misshapen foot inside the sock but a ball of yarn).
Best of all, I avoid the boredom of two identical socks, knowing that I WILL centre the stitch pattern on the foot on the next sock.