Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Madness is Upon Us, Sock Madness that is

Last year around this time, the first annual Sock Madness Competition was held, basically insanely stressful speed knitting of mystery sock patterns. It was so much fun that I signed up again this year. It is a much bigger group this year and the guidelines have changed a bit, but the enthusiasm is inspiring.

My personal first rule was that everything for the competition had to be knit from my stash. The first sock was sample knit in Jitterbug and I wanted to stay close to their suggestions, so I dug through the stash and here's what I came up with, all Jitterbug.
A few days before the pattern was released, the organizers said the yarn should be "scary". Well, that all depends. Personally, pink or blue would be scary, really scary. Hmmm, after looking at my available colors, I decided on Raphael, the one to the right which is balled up, since it was the color of a terrible bruise, shades of flesh and plum and purple, with dabs of red and blue.
The pattern arrived on Thursday and look, my yarn is the color of the Zombie in their photo. So I dove right in.
Ribbed cuff and drop stitch pattern. My yarn pooled more than I thought it would, but I don't dislike it and I think the stitch pattern is simple enough that it's not a big problem.
Here's a leg, knit a repeat longer than the pattern since I like my socks taller. Definitely not going to be able to get two socks out of a skimpy skein of Jitterbug, so thank goodness I had bought two. A lot of people with smaller feet were running out of yarn. Why oh why does Colinette do such anorexic skeins when it is a reasonably expensive yarn?

Now I'm not going to say how far along I am since you never know about the competition. Suffice it to say I am much further along than this photo shows. Unfortunately for me, I'm in the super speed knitters' division and it is almost full. The other three divisions are still pretty wide open, and I know I would make the cut if I'd been in one of them. In any case, since I'm pretty far behind, I dedided to make a sock I would like, so went ahead and added the extra rows.

Being totally sleep deprived these days, I keep falling asleep on my knitting...two rows-sound asleep. Startle myself awake and hour later to find my knitting needles still poised in mid-air. NOT a good idea to start right in knitting again since you will be lost even though you think you are not and totally screw up the pattern. One eight hour stretch when I knew I would be stuck at the hospital waiting looked very promising for sock progress. I packed it up the night before, making sure I had yarn, pattern, extra needles and a tiny crochet hook in the bag. The bag was placed next to my purse to take with me in the morning. I know you can imagine what happened. Yup, I left the bag right where it was and spent the whole day kicking myself. All that said, I quite like this pattern and will be happy to have this pair of socks.
There is a round which will require two colors of laceweight. This is the only possibility that I found in my stash, baby alpaca, but even held together, two strands make a very skimpy yarn for a sock, I'm talking 00000s. If I don't make it through this round, I may skip the laceweight pair.

As for my son's status, it looks like they have found an acceptable marrow donor. We have fingers tightly crossed for the physical and infectious disease testing. More details on his blog.


Bea said...

Oh I do hope they have found a match. That would be wonderful. I'm keeping positive thoughts for you!

I gave your yarn to Micki last night when I left knitting. Ahem...I wasn't sure I could trust anyone else to not keep it for themselves...ahem...she's already got a skein. Just kidding. She does have it though if you didn't make it last night.

I love the way your socks are turning out! You can't be any further behind then the rest of us in the knitting group. I think Grace just cast on! I'm a half a foot away from finishing my first! YAY!

Deborah (aka Mt. Mom) said...

Ah, don't worry too much about the competition. There's a point where being too savvy just spoils the fun!

I read Steven's blog earlier today, and I share your hopefulness!

Anonymous said...

I really hope they have found a suitable match. Last year over 1000 people here in our local area registered to find a donor for a young man who fell ill exactly a year ago - his donor was found in the US, but he did not make it and died on the first day of ´08. But the Registration drive in his favour has yielded donors for at least 6 others ill persons - so in some way, it was not useless...

Sarah-potterknitter said...

Popping over from Sock Madness UConn cheering section. There's only been two pairs finished in the last two days, everyone is slowing down. Means everyone still has a chance!

Good Luck,

Ronni said...

Your zombie socks are a great color match for that photo!

I'm so glad there's good news on the donor front. My DH is donating blood tonight and I reminded him to ask about getting typed for marrow donation. They do that at our local blood bank but you have to ask at the right time or something. As soon as I've been healthy for a couple of weeks in a row I will do the same. Not that either of us would necessarily be able to help Steve but maybe we could help someone someday.

Chris H said...

UConn cheering section here! We're not full-up yet..let's try to be the first division that is!

Also sending positive thoughts and prayers your son's way.

Oh, and I can't tell you how many times I've set my knitting bag next to my purse so I don't forget it, then I end up taking the knitting and leaving my PURSE behind!