I ended up knitting a whole bunch of things for various people to put on their feet at the end of the year. I’m not sure how it turned out that way, but these things tend to come in waves.
First up, my brother didn’t know that he needed handknit socks named after a famous mathematician, but he did.
These are from the always fabulous Cookie A., sock designer extraordinaire. I have made many of her sock patterns in the past (Ravelry links all, of course), and they are always the perfect combination of technically complicated, fun to knit, and just a little bit nerdy.
These ones in particular, Cauchy, are from her fantastic book Sock Innovation, and they are named after Augustin Louis Cauchy, a French mathematician responsible for the Cauchy-Schwarz Inequality. Therefore, they are covered in tiny stretchy inequality symbols.
See? Math! In your socks!
Seeing as my brother and I are math-and-science-minded people, I figured he’d enjoy them.
I may have upped the geekiness quotient by knitting them out of Berroco Sox in the colorway called Watson. My science brain is still feeling so clever.
I think he liked them, if his willingness to be a sock model for my silly knitting photo shoot was any indication.
He’s a pro already.
Next up? Well, Dan needed some socks, too. Some super secret ones.
You knit your lengthwise stripes on a long circular needle, doing a bit of a modified-magic-loop-technique-sort-of-thing. After a minor setback while learning the cast-on method prescribed, I was off and running.
I am a sucker for some good squishy garter stitch, and the stripes make it even better. The yarn is Knit One Crochet Too’s Ty-Dy Wool, and although it is a tiny bit splitty, it made for some lovely stripes. I’m a big fan of how slightly imperfect they are.
Dan is calling them his lizard socks. I like it.
Two warnings, though, before you embark on your lengthwise sock journey yourself. #1? These socks tend to slouch a bit at the ankles. I think it just might be the way of the lengthwise sock, unless you deliberately knit them slightly small to stretch. #2? That Kitchener stitch bind off all the way up the leg to finish? I don’t think that I have ever had such angry thoughts about my knitting as when I was completing that. Usually Kitchener doesn’t bother me one bit, but this is garter-style Kitchener, for what feels like several hundred stitches. It is super easy to get mixed up and skip a step, so just buckle it down, pour yourself a drink, and pay attention. You’ll get through it, you just won’t like it while it’s happening.
Last up? Some plush purple goodness.
Knit up in Cascade Pacific Chunky, one of the loveliest wool and acrylic blends out there. Super soft and shiny with gorgeous saturated color. Yum.
The mukluk shape is created by some very clever short-rowing in the instep. I have used the word clever a great many times during this post. I may need a thesaurus.
Check out that grafting action.
I obviously didn’t have to be coaxed to model these ones off. I’m excited to put them in the mail for her soon. She definitely deserves some squishy woolly comfort for the rest of the chilly New Hampshire winter.
If you think that’s the end of my year-end making-of-things, do not fret! I promise that there’s more baking and knitting to come, which may or may not involve chocolate, oranges, and bunnies. I’ll let your imagination work out the rest.