Knitting

The cold light of dawn

Not quite pretty enough in the cold light of dawn

I frequently wander from the long, straight road of commonsense. For example, allowing myself to be struck late on Friday night with the idea of starting work on the next of the Six Socks for 2021. I had already nominated the Noodle Soup Yarns’ Sturdy Sock in Vivid Firmament as the wool to knit up in January/February, and identified an urge to add some texture, so I had a strong jumping-off point.

I got a few rows of the ribbing done before I went to bed on Friday and I worked a reasonable amount on Saturday. The textured block pattern (a simple knit 3, purl 3 for two rows then purl 3, knit 3 for the next two rows) was okay and it fitted nice and evenly into my 60-stitch basic sock template. I knitted on this happily enough through Saturday, then Sunday came and went, but I didn’t pick the project up at all.

Returning to it today for a peaceful early morning retreat, I worked another eight rows, but something was up. I kept wondering all the while why I wasn’t feeling any joy, or at least calm pleasure, as I worked. I stopped repeatedly, studying the fabric, striving but failing to enjoy the play of the deep and subtle colours, asking myself if I was yearning for a bright and cheerful wool instead. The final time I stopped, it was in the sure knowledge that something about this project wasn’t working at all, and that something was the texture. I knew that this yarn would look much better on my usual lovely, sleek stocking stitch fabric, allowing me to watch the colours evolve stitch by stitch, row by row. It’s all the fault of the colours, you see, the colours want to show off to their best effect and they can only do that on a smooth and even surface. If I’m reverting to type, the colours made me do it.

So now I’m back to just a cuff and ready to embark on the good old vanilla sock that I know and love. Like Popeye, I am what I am, and what I am is the person who knits the same plain old sock pattern every time, letting the glorious colours do all the talking. I think these are going to be called my Popeye Socks; I think they’ve got a hint of spinach green in them!

5 thoughts on “The cold light of dawn

  1. I know exactly what you mean here!! The last socks I knit had a pretty slipped stitch pattern, but I really felt like the yarn just wanted to be left alone. Never underestimate the power of plain vanilla!!
    That yarn is gorgeous, by the way.

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