Monday, January 10, 2011

"Some" of the Sock Making Process......."

I had high hopes of documenting the process of knitting a sock. Unfortunately, my good intentions only made it so far. First and foremost, I forgot to show the yarn in its pre-dyed condition.....then the way I had tied the skein up prior to dyeing the black. Maybe when I dye another skien and repeat using the same process, eh? So.....pretend you have seen the dyeing process. ;)

Using my "umbrella swift", I unwind the dyed skein of sock yarn into a ball, using my "Strauch Jumbo Ball Winder".

A close up of the sock yarn. I was very pleased that the black and white stayed as "crisp" as it had, although as you can see in this close up, there is a little bit of bleeding, creating some grey sections.

The completed skein of sock yarn on the ball winder.......

Next step is transferring the yarn from ball form and onto a cone, using my Christmas present from Don, the "Silver Needles Cone Winder".

Here again, I began with really good intentions of documenting the CSM (circular sock machine) knitting process, starting out with a photo of the machine with the yarn on it and ready to go. The red yarn is to be used as scrap yarn.

After neglecting to take a few photos of the "in between" steps, this photo shows how a "hung hem" is created. Once the set up bonnet is attached to the machine and scrap yarn is used to begin the knitting (steps which I'd forgotten to take photos of), the main sock yarn is attached and knitting of the sock begins. After 20 rows of knitted fabric, the knitting process is stopped and the first row of knitting is then brought up to the needles and "hung" stitch by stitch around the knitting cylinder. This photo shows the process is about 1/2 completed. A contrasting color of scarp yarn is used so that one can see the good sock yarn stitches easily and thus be able to hang the hem correctly.

This photo also shows the change from knitting all of the needles (lower section of the red scarp yarn), to a 1x3 mock rib, which uses 1/4 less needles (every 4th needle is removed after the stitch on it is hung over it's neighbor). The more I write, the more I realize what photos I need to take when I redo the knitting demo.

Here you can see the "hanging of the hem" a little better. The needles which I have taken out for the mock rib will be replaced prior to my knitting the heel.

Magically, we end with the socks completed and scrap yarn holding the end stitches for the toe. I promise I will take more photos of the CSM knitting process, documenting each step, and write a better post.

This photo actually caused some confusion with Maniphone (one of our friends in North Dakota).......she thought the toes of the sock were going to be red when completed. On this pair, they will not be since the red will be unraveled and taken off the sock after I hang the toe stitches on 2 double point needles so I can close the toe and finish the sock using the "Kitchener Stitch". I really like the idea of a different color yarn for the toes, and possibly even the heels.......thank you Maniphone! I'll have to do some experimenting. Changing yarns isn't any problem, but will cause more ends that will have to be woven into the knitted fabric. I'll have to ask my CSM mentors about the best way to knit different colored heel/toes. ;) Remember my mentioning a "learning curve" last January when I bought my machine? It continues.......

The completed pair of socks........washed/dried and tied with my "business card", ready to be given to their intended recipient. ;)


Soxophone Player said...

Have you used your electric cone winder to take yarn directly off the skein winder? (I'd like to have a cone winder, but my purpose would be to save time that I spend winding into cakes with a ball winder.)

Jenny Bellairs said...

The black and white with a touch of gray adding dimension is quite striking. I was thinking the same thing your friend Maniphone was--a few rows of red at the top, the heels, and toes would make an awesome pair of socks! Nice job, Mike!