Yesterday, as I started the lace of the Flow Motion socks, I realised two things:
They were enormous, and the yarn isn’t superwash.
I might have been tempted to keep knitting if I hadn’t discovered the former, but I’m kind of glad I did stop. Non machine washable socks are pretty pointless, for me. Look what I had to do with the last pair.
A bit of stash diving brought out the aqua Heirloom 5ply I’d bought in Sydney to try knitting socks with. The Flow Motion socks are supposed to be knit on 4mm needles. I went down to 3.5mm needles with the Harmony after knitting a toe that was waaaay to big. The Heirloom 5ply is quite a bit thinner than the Harmony 8ply and only slightly thicker than the average sock yarn. What needle size to use? I considered 3mms, but I’m not sure I own any. So I went for 2.75mm.
4mm to 2.75mm? 8ply to 5ply? Am I mad?
Well, apparently not. The sock fits perfectly. Width-wise, anyway. I do have narrow feet, but feet a third narrower than the pattern fits? I guess this should have been a warning…
I had a good long night of tv knitting, so I managed to get to the beginning of the lace, then a good 17 rows furthur, before I realised there was another problem.
Now, Cat’s corrections on her site note that the length of the foot before lace shaping begins should have included several sizes. Her corrections are in US shoe sizes, but she also includes measurements… in inches, of course. Sigh. I aimed for the smallest size, which was also the one Vogue included, of 14cm.
Alarm bells were already ringing, you see, because when I use my own toe-up heel flap pattern, the instep starts at around 11cm. In the pattern photo the lace shaping appears to start much earlier than instep shaping usually does. Trying it on, I could see something was wrong. Maybe when this pattern says the length of the foot should be 14cm, it doesn’t mean the ‘foot’ section as most patterns do, but the whole foot plus toe. I trusted my instincts and started the lace at 11cm.
But then, when I stopped at row 17 of the lace and counted how many rows to go before the start of the heel flap and added that to what I had, I found I’d have a sock already as long as my foot and a few cm longer once the heel was added.
What the…? I have narrow feet, but lengthwise they’re pretty average, if not a smidge larger than average. This is definitely not a manly pattern. And it’s supposed to follow US shoe sizes. If I hadn’t met a few Americans and know they’re pretty normal human beings, size-wise, I might be wondering at this point if they are a race of noble giants!
I frogged back a third of the knitting I’d done and restarted the lace 3cm earlier. So far all is going well. Well, except that the bit I knit while Air Crash Investigation was on might be a little tight, but that’s nothing to do with the pattern!