the quilted tortoise

Monday, 28 January 2013

the green socks

Since I've been going on and on and on at home about how heavenly hand knit socks are to wear Mr Tortoise caved and said that yes he would like a pair.  He wants some for wearing in front of the telly when it's a bit cold.  Within minutes I was into my sock books and on my favourite yarn websites asking him what colour and pattern he wanted.  He made an excellent choice - Dream in Colour Smooshy in the colour Happy Forest.

I decided they would be the perfect project to take on holidays over Christmas.  We flew into Santiago, Chile, had a few days there and then a 2 week cruise south along the west coast , around cape horn and then north along the east coast ending in Buenos Aires, Argentina where we spent a few more days.

Hundreds of Gentoo penguins on the Falkland Islands
There's plenty of relaxing time on the cruise on sea days so I was happy sat in a lounge knitting and listening to audio books.

In my infinite wisdom I decided to wing it size wise and use the plain gusset heel sock from Wendy Johnson's Socks From The Toe Up and then do a k4, p1 repeat to get a wide ribbed look.  The first sock I knit seemed quite a bit larger than the socks I've knit for myself, but he does have bigger feet.  I knit right up to the end of the heel gusset increases and then tried it on him.  Yikes!!  It was way too long!  So I ripped back to make them an inch shorter in length and then redid the gusset increases and went ahead and finished the heel. Then he tried it on again. Double, triple, quadruple yikes!!!  It's like I'd knit a sock for a hobbit! Ridiculously large!  In both length and width!  It was still an inch too long even after taking out an inch from the original foot!!  Let's just say my inexperience showed!  

How absurd is that bottom sock???

I started over and kept the hobbit sock as a template of how big not to make it.  Finally success, a sock that fit!

I made him model this in the hotel room in Buenos Aires :)

You will note that I said "a" sock that fit, as in one.  I'd now used up my holiday knitting time so as soon as we got home I was determined to get the pair finished.  So I knit like crazy and tried to get a lot faster with my continental knitting.  Guess what?  In my need for speed my tension got loose and when I'd finished I noticed that this sock seemed bigger…what the???  My tension was normal at the sides of the sock but in the centre front and back the stitches had become looser and larger.  I could have cried!  It's my own fault though and hopefully a lesson learned!  So I still have yet another sock to knit but I can't face it just yet.  Needless to say it's summer here and he doesn't need warm socks just yet...


  1. Oh dear. Well, as you said, you've got time. But a break definitely sounds good.
    Love all the penguins

  2. Oh Shoot! Well, that's how we learn I guess. The sock sure is beautiful though -- a perfect pattern for a man. And your cruise! It sounds fantastic! Seeing penguins in the wild is on my bucket list -- and that's a place I'd love to see them!

  3. Glad you had a good time away! Did you knit them both continental? Catch up soon

  4. Oh Michelle, You made me laugh out loud! Hilarious!!