June 14, 2016

In Reverse

I think that we would all agree that I'm a pretty prolific knitter of things. And, I'm not going to lie, when it comes to knitting socks, I am a sock addict. You will find me with at least one, sometimes two or three, pair of socks on the needles.  If I don't have 20 other WIPs going at the same time, I can whip out a pair in about a week (unless they are for my husband).  But, I'm a top-down gal, and having only done one pair of socks from the toe up, and granted, the fact that I had to re-knit that pair 7 times until my husband was completely satisfied with the fit may be coloring my viewpoint, but I can honestly say that top-down is the only way my brain likes to work a sock because in reverse, the math doesn't make much sense to me.  And although I totally know how to work 2-at-a-time, toe-up, I pointedly choose not to do it.

Until now.

So let me rewind and explain.  There's a British video podcast that I thoroughly enjoy watching now that I've just recently discovered the video podcast scene.  The podcaster is Nathan Taylor, who is also Sockmatician on Ravelry and a plethera of social media, and although we do differ on some of our views, I have found a kindred spirit in the love of musical theatre, advancing correct grammatical form (does that sound as "English teacher" to you as it does in my head?), and sock knitting.  Only, here's the thing: he knits socks toe-up.  Recently, he wrote a sock pattern that is so awesomely and mathematically ingenious that I feel like it would be a disservice to sock knitting if I didn't at least try it.  I mean, when someone figures out how to create a pattern that allows you to input your base measurements and then automatically generates ALL of the numbers to custom-fit your foot as you knit (you have to have an iPad for that automatic part--sorry Windows users) ... well I appreciate a man who does the math for me, don't you? Not going to lie. That's one of the perks of being married to an engineer.

Now, I also have this new yarn base, Traveler, and I have been dying (no pun intended) to use it for a pair of socks.  Yesterday, I cast on for the Sockmatician's Toe-Ups. The pattern is great and the math is done for me, but ... it's backward.  My brain is really struggling with working the part of the toe first that I always so look forward to working last.  It's like the week before last when I gave everyone desert before dinner.  The kids were so befuddled by homemade pound cake (with homegrown, sliced peaches drizzled in blackberry sauce and topped with whipped cream) that they didn't know if they should eat it or it just look at it.  There were questions, like "What are we supposed to do with this?" and "Where's dinner?" and "What kind of witchery is this?" That's how I am feeling about working socks backward, especially since the toes, based on my experience, seem to be very narrow.

The amount of brain activity that it has taken for me to repeat two increase rows would astound you.  However, for as much as I have struggled with this, I really think that this sock pattern deserves a proper test because, if you can't knit it 2-at-a-time, it's not worth knitting.  Of course, the important thing is that my Guitar God colorway looks fabulous!

I will, as the Sockmatician says, "crack on" with this toe-up madness and we'll just see how it goes.


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