Thursday, October 30, 2008

On swaps

Thanks everyone for your comments on yesterday's post - the overwhelming favourite was Simurgh, so I've firmed up my commitment to knitting that one - but not until next month! The next favourite was Madli's Shawl - and I will definitely be doing that one sometime soonish - heck, I bought the IK it is in especially for that pattern (although looking back at it yesterday, there are a few more things in there I'm quite partial to...)

One of the things I've really enjoyed about being part of the knitblogging and ravelry community is participating in knitting swaps. It's funny, trying to explain it to non-knitters - they find it quite hard to understand that you might actually knit something for a stranger! And that they (or someone else) might knit something for you in return!

I've done a few swaps, and have been really lucky each time - I've had no swappees flake out on me and have received some lovely goodies and made some great friends through swaps.

My only problem with swaps is that I always (always! I never learn!) leave the knitting to the last minute! Gah! At the moment, I'm madly knitting for two swaps - an international Christmas Stocking swap (via Ravelry) and an Australian rainbow swap (again via Ravelry) - the theme was Red, so how could I not sign up!

For the Christmas Stocking, my pal expressed a desire for a white/cream aran style stocking, with cables and bobbles and the works. I couldn't find a pattern so I figured I could make one up (well, using stitch dictionaries and the like). And this is where I'm asking for your help (again! I know - so demanding this week!!)

So far, I've done the cuff in "holly berries" from the Vogue Cables Stitchionary - I figured that was suitably Christmassy. I did a garter ridge and Vikkel braid at the base of the cuff, and then I've done the leg using the cable pattern from Irene's scarf. My first bobbles!! I've done two repeats and I'm going to do one more (at least) and then do the heel.
My dilemma is what to do once I reach the heel. Short row heel flap or heel flap and gussets? And do I continue the cable pattern on the heel or do it plain or do another pattern on the heel?

I'm planning on doing another pattern on the foot, sort of like the snicket socks (Rav link). But how to transition? I'm considering doing another garter ridge/vikkel braid at the bottom of the leg, but I'm worry that will look a bit chunky. Hmmm. Guess I will just have to give it a whirl and see how it turns out.

But any advice/opinions will be much appreciated!!


Bells said...

My first question is what's common in christmas stockings? I mean, they're not actually worn, are they, so getting a good fit isn't an issue.

Me, I'd go for the heel flap and gussets because it's what I know best and with all that other (rather amazing) business going on, I'd want to make that part as straight forward as possible and just get on with what will no doubt be an equally amazing) foot.

I am so terribly impressed with this. You've been describing it to me for ages and the image in my mind didn't compare to this - it's going to be gorgeous.

And I'm not driven to swap like you are. Just can't summon the enthusiasm anymore!

MadMad said...

Whoa. I was not here. Pretend you didn't see me. I know nothing!

~Jody said...

I'd go with a heel flap & gussetts. A clever knitter like you could continue the cable pattern into the heel flap - extra pretty ;)

Alwen said...

Since you don't wear a Christmas stocking, I think you get to go as all-out as you like. The heel doesn't need to fit and you don't have to worry about cables feeling uncomfortable in a shoe.

It's looking gorgeous. My verification word says "Grabut" - does that mean I should grab it?

Donna Lee said...

Since no one is going to wear it, I'd say go with heel flap with cables or something. It's a gorgeous stocking! I wanted to make one for my daughter who moved out and took hers with her (I made everyone one when they were born) so I would have one to hang up for her but I haven't seriously considered it, yet. the fact that Christmas is only 8 weeks away hasn't sunk in yet....

Linda said...

The stocking looks gorgeous. I would also go with the heel flap because I have tried a short row heel with thick yarn and ended up with holes even when trying all the anti-hole tricks.(or maybe I am just rubbish at short rows!)

Sarah said...

I've stopped trying to steal yesterdays yarn so have some contributions today. Don't do the short row heel because they are evil - do a heel flap with another pattern on it - it would look fantabulous and I think a garter ridge transition would look great. You've made it this far alone so I trust you'll make it look great even ignoring our words of wisdom - as you should definitely do whatever is most fun for you to knit.

Anonymous said...

I have no advice, but that pattern is just gorgeous. So glad you have found the bobbles. Aren't they the best?!

Lynne said...

What a fantastic way to try out different patterns. Good on you.

BTW, I'd do short row heels 'cos that's what I always do but I see I'm outnumbered here! :-)