The week that was

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Plain socks, knit in Koigu KPPPM #P123

Plain socks, knit in Koigu KPPPM #P123. Apparently these colours are not out of my system yet.

I can hardly believe it’s Monday, because I’m still in recovery mode from last week (also because I worked yesterday). Last week my section of the paper went live with a new program that totally changes our workflow and, in small ways, everything about how we do our jobs. The basics of the job (design news pages, edit stories, write headlines, etc.) is the same, but the way we do it has changed, and like any big change, this one has been hard. It’s new technology, with fewer people in-house, and last week was a bit chaotic. The paper made it out close to on time every night, so it was okay, but I got home every night totally wiped (and late, since new systems tend to take longer, at least at the beginning).

It was one of those weeks that makes you glad you’re a knitter. Every knitter I know has, at some point or another, talked up the stress-relief of knitting, and I really needed that last week. Of course, as is often the case, I didn’t really have time to knit. I did pick up my needles and work a few stitches here and there, but there wasn’t time for more.

Hunter St. Cowl. Lace always looks bad before it's blocked, but I am loving this pattern (and this colour). I think I managed to knit four rows on this last week. Part of me thought it would be done by now.

Hunter St. Cowl. Lace always looks bad before it’s blocked, but I am loving this pattern (and this colour). I think I managed to knit four rows on this last week. Part of me thought it would be done by now.

By the end of the week, I realized (in part) why that was: I didn’t have anything plain on the needles. Everything I was knitting had a chart of some sort, and even an easy to memorize chart like the one for the Hunter St. cowl requires just enough counting to not be mindless. Often, I enjoy charted knitting when I’m stressed. For one, it makes me feel a little clever, even when I’m just executing the same set of rows over and over, but it also forces me to stop thinking about whatever is on my mind (last week, page layouts – I actually dreamt about nothing but page layouts two nights in a row) and focus on something else. When I have the time, this is awesome, when I only have time for a row or two, it’s not the same.

The second Hummingbird sock, which I'm knitting Hedgehog Fibres sock, which might just be my new favourite sock yarn.

The second Hummingbird sock, which I’m knitting Hedgehog Fibres sock, which might just be my new favourite sock yarn.

It took me the entire week to realize this, so on Saturday, after running around for most of the day, I finally fished some fun Koigu out of my stash cast on a pair of plain socks (at the top of the post). Sometimes stockinette bores me to tears and sometimes it feels like magic. These are magic socks. I knit most of them while we hosted friends for dinner on Saturday, and a little more last night, and I’m going to try and squeeze in a few rows before I go to work.

Part of a pocket for my Woodstove Season cardigan. After wearing it a few times without pockets, I'm actually reconsidering my plan, so I might put these away for now. They can always go on later if I change my mind.

Part of a pocket for my Woodstove Season cardigan. After wearing it a few times without pockets, I’m actually reconsidering my plan, so I might put these away for now. They can always go on later if I change my mind.

L sometimes teases me about how much yarn we have in the house, but honestly, this is what my stash is for. I definitely did not have time to go to the yarn shop this weekend, but luckily I had already planned for such a moment and had what I needed at home. These socks will likely sit on my needles for a while since stockinette socks are nice to have around but rarely hold my attention long enough to be a primary project. That’s okay, though, because they’ll be there when I need them.

Edited to add: After a couple of people asked about the needles I’m using for my socks, I thought I’d post a link. I treated myself to some Signature Needles after Christmas and holy, they are awesome. They are a bit of a splurge, but when you think of how often you use your needles, and factor in that good metal ones will last forever, I decided it was worth it. I bought three sets (2.25mm, 2.5mm, and 2.75mm) and am seriously considering getting another set in 3.25mm (for worsted-weight socks).

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8 thoughts on “The week that was

  1. introvertedknitter

    I love your description on charted knitting and agree completely on the need for a mindless project. All your WIPS are beautiful to look at. What kind of needle are you using for your socks? They are so pretty and look like nice metal to work with.

    1. Angela Hickman Post author

      I am using Signature Needles for my socks (I’ll add a link to the bottom of the post). I love them! They’re a splurge, but knit enough socks to justify it 😉

  2. HKnits

    I completely agree with @introvertedknitter…pretty much my thoughts exactly. what are those lovely needles you were using for your socks and your pictures of your WIPs are really pretty. thanks for sharing.-Heather

  3. Julie

    Your WIPs all look awesome! I think it’s important to have a little variety in the level of mindfulness a WIP is, and I try to have a mindless one on the go at all times for when I just nee dot keep my fingers (but not my brain!) busy.

  4. MidKnit Owl

    All those projects look beautiful! I especially love the Koigu sock colours – I can’t get enough of patterned sock yarns! I just nominated you for the Leibster Award – I really enjoy reading your blog and think other people will too!

  5. Cassy

    Exactly! That’s what a stash is for! Those Hummingbird socks are gorgeous. I think Koigu KPPPM is amazing for plain stockinette socks, and it’s so dang soft when you wear it.

    1. Angela Hickman Post author

      It’s funny – I always think I should do something really special with Koigu (and other pretty yarns like it), but honestly, it almost always looks best in plain stockinette.

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