Saturday, July 14, 2012

Adventures in Travel(Knitting)

Cadence Socks by VeryBusyMonkey, or my interpretation of them!

I just returned from two weeks of vacation, traveling via MomVan 1100 miles and back to visit family and see a tiny fraction of the great state of Texas.  My grand plan when I embarked on this journey was sock knitting.  A sock starts small and stays small.  A sock won't sit on my lap like a big hairy cat and shed on me in the midst of a hot Texas summer.  A sock is easy to carry with me in my handbag.  A sock is easy to pull out and work a few rounds in the midst of after-dinner conversation.

I had a pair of socks that were almost finished, plus some nice (pricey) sock yarn I wanted to use for a pair of stockinette socks.

What's more, I decided to design a pair of socks, using Brooks Jones' Basic Sock Chart and devising my own lace/cable pattern for the leg and foot, along with some simple Regia sock yarn that was not earmarked for other use.

Well, I had a great trip and learned a little something about my ability to knit while traveling.
      1) Designing in the round is not as simple as designing flat.
      2) Due to lack of concentration while knitting, lace and I are currently not on speaking terms.  I'm sure we'll work it out eventually.
      3) Despite HOURS spent as a passenger, hours when I could have been knitting, our schedule was so hectic that I was some days too tired to do more than a few rounds on my stockinette socks (I did finish the first sock in the pair on the day after we got home).
      4) Stockinette socks are a lifesaver! (OK, to be honest, I already knew this!)
      5) I'm not so crazy about that pricey yarn.  Despite its pretty colors, I think Regia or Berroco knit up much nicer.

I was tempted, looking back on my grand plan and the way it subsequently unfolded, to feel a bit of a failure.  But knitting, like life, is a journey (and so is a 2000+ mile trip!).  And any good journey offers many lessons we weren't necessarily looking for.  If I focus on what I planned but didn't accomplish I will miss the point of the lessons of the journey.

My final tally for the trip?  One completed pair of socks (pictured above), one half of a pair of socks, and a pretty swatch for a sock pattern that may never make it into a pair of socks. Oh, and lots of insight into myself and the nature of knitting.