Friday, April 15, 2011

Sylvia's "Sylvia", Part 5

Last year, I started a fleece-to-socks project. The fleece was from a CVM lamb named “Sylvia”. I got 6 ounces of the lovely raw wool from my friend Sylvia (for whom the lamb was named). You can see my blog entries about this project starting with July 12, 2010.

“Sylvia” lives at The White Barn Farm in Blanchard, Michigan with several other CVM/Romeldale sheep. If you want to see classic pictures of this distinctive breed, go to their website.

Most of this project was completed in July of last year. Then it stalled. I was having trouble designing the sock pattern. I tried several stitch patterns before I stumbled onto the stitch that inspired me.It is stitch pattern “I.21” on page 17 in The Harmony Guild to Practical Knitting Stitches (1983)

This stitch pattern is made up of just knits and purls. No slips, no twists, no yarn-overs, no increases or decreases, no fancy loops. Just knit and purl.

But what a pattern! I would never have guessed that a knit-purl stitch pattern could surprise me so. As the pattern grew on my needles, I saw a wonderful construction of gently curving horizontal welts. The pattern as written has a modest amount of asymmetry, but it could easily be revised to be symmetrical, or even to be more wildly uneven.

Isn’t knitting amazing? After so many years of knitting, I can still find newness and excitement in the basic building blocks of this craft.

Here’s a picture of “Sylvia” with the two lambs she had this spring.

Here’s a picture of the finished socks.

Here’s a closer look at the stitch pattern.

Sylvia will soon receive her “Sylvia” socks as a belated birthday present.

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