Friday, March 2, 2012

Wool Dryer Ball Report

Thanks for the comments, its so nice to know that someone reads my blog!

These dryer balls are awesome! Seriously!

I wasn't checking constantly; I just set the dryer for less time than usual, but a big load of diapers dried in 40 minutes less (at least) than usual AND the thick BumGenius AIOs that take FOREVER to dry were completely dry. Next time I'll try setting it for a little less time.

Here's some how to info that I found.

If you're making a bunch that is probably the way to go. I made 3 and they're about 3 inches across. I just felted them at my sink, it went pretty quick. I wrapped the wool into balls like shown in those links, put hot water and soap on them, and rubbed them in my hands, then did a second layer. With how well they work, I should make some more. I don't have any old pantyhose, because I wear them almost never, maybe I'll try a sock.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Toe Up Socks with Gusset and Heel Flaps

I really like knitting socks toe up, but I also wanted to try for a better fit by adding a gusset, and I wanted to knit it with magic loop instead of double points. I searched and searched and didn't find a pattern that had what I was looking for. So I examined heels and gussets in several different patterns and of course my gauge was different, and this is what I came up with.

I knit from both ends of the yarn, which is why the stripes progress in opposite directions.

This is a basic sock formula which can be adjusted. The numbers in my example fit a size 6 US shoe size (9 inches toe to heel, and 7.75inches around the ball of the foot).
Gauge: 6.25 st/in
Needle size: 4
Yarn: Indulgence 6 Ply Distrato (at 426 yards, it looks like I have enough for another pair)

Use a cast on appropriate for magic loop knitting, such as this

Cast on 16 stitches per sock (8 each for the top and bottom). If you want a wider toe, cast on more to start.
Toe increases:
Row 1: K1, M1, knit to last stitch, M1, K1; K1, M1, knit to last stitch, M1, K1
Row 2: K around
Continue increasing until there are 48 stitches per sock. (or more for a wider sock)

Knit around until you have 6 inches or about 2/3 of the total foot length. This can be adjusted depending on how big of a gusset you want. On this sock I did 3 rounds of increasing for the gusset, if you want more start that many rows earlier.
The first half of the sock is the top.
Row 1: Knit across the top. K1, M1, knit to last stitch, M1,
K1 (2 stitches increased)
Row 2: K around
Repeat until you have the desired number of gusset increases.

Turn Heel
How wide or narrow the heel is can be adjusted by how many stitches are in the middle of the heel. This gives a fairly wide heel.

Row1: K 23, M1, K1, wrap and turn
Row2: P18, M1, P1, W&T
Row3: K16, M1, K1, W&T
Row4: P14, M1, P1, W&T
Row5: K12, M1, K1, W&T
Row6: P10, M1, P1, W&T
Row7: K8, M1, K1, W&T
Row8: P6, M1, P1, W&T

Knit around picking up and K2TOG the wraps as you go. (Pick up the wrap, put it on the left needle, and knit it together with the stitch it was wrapped around)

Heel Flap
K till 8 stitches left, SSK, turn
Sl 1, P20, P2TOG
Sl 1, K20, SSK
Continue decreasing until you are back to 48 stitches per sock (so 24 on the heel side).
Knit around until a little less (1 1/4 inches) than desired length
Switch to K2, P2 rib for 1 1/4 inches.

Use a stretchy bind off such as a K2TOG (through the back loop to make it look like a regular bind off) bind off or Jenny's surprisingly stretchy bind off

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