With all the weather events, indoor hobbies are what keeps my mind happy and creative, otherwise I would be hibernating under the duvet. The knitting needles have been occupied with this year's Spring sock. Since this is my fourth pair of socks I decided to "knit on the edge" and cobble together my favorite parts from several different patterns. Instead of creating what sounds like a potential "Frankenstein" sock, I've ended up with a interesting project which I won't mind knitting two of; which of course, is the downside of knitting an un-fun sock pattern.
I found this free Cabled Sock pattern on Ravelry http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/basic-cabled-socks which is just what I had in mind. I did it a little shorter completing only six of the eight cables. For the heel flap I tried a new stitch a Reversed slip 1, Knit 1- Row 1(WS): Purl across. Row 2 (RS): *Slip 1 as if to purl, knit 1. Repeat from * across. For 24 rows ending on right side. I found that bit in a Coats & Clark, Learn How Book #170-D and edition dated 1975, but is also in Ann Budd's book, Getting Started Knitting Socks. I really liked this heel flap stitch because it creates a box pattern that lays out a handy one stitch per box framework when you pick up stitches, evenly now, for the gusset. I love the heel turn magic and use the Ann Budd directions. Then it's just endurance for me to knit down the instep and the ribbing pattern helps. I also prefer to harken back to the ancients of sock knitting when finishing off my toe, I use a gathered tip; a simple historic finish to the toe decrease. So far, my first sock is coming along nicely.
I also gifted a dog coat to my terrific vet, Dr. Anne. She has helped us through various health issues with our dogs and definitely deserves serious recognition. She has pound dogs too and her older dog needs a bit of cozy warm TLC. My initial pattern was a little "winging it" with fabric and doggie measurements. I've used corduroy and polar fleece for the outer shell with batting for warmth. This is my third dog coat, and it looks darn cute. I'm hoping her pup enjoys his new outfit. Here's to keeping warm, creative and colorful for this last bit of winter.