Snowy Jane Bennet Socks

I don't know if I've ever talked about this on the blog before but it's probably about time. I've had a steady love affair with Jane Austen for almost 20 years. (I must be getting old!) I read all the books while in high school (a time period which coincided with a heyday in her popularity). I even wrote a lengthy paper on two of my favorite books, Pride & Prejudice and Persuasion. Of course, I don't stop at the books. I love the movies as well. If you haven't seen the BBC miniseries version of P&P with Colin Firth, you should probably stop whatever you're doing right now and watch it. It will be the best six hours you ever spent.

Ok, so let's get to the socks already! When I saw my first issue of Jane Austen Knits, I scooped it right up. It took me a couple of years to knit something from it but I finally have. These socks are made with the Jane Bennet Socks pattern from the Jane Austen Knits Summer 2012 magazine. Now, if you are familiar with Pride & Prejudice, you will know that Jane Bennet is the heroine of that story. She's a smart, feisty girl that speaks her mind. The kind of girl that I would like to be friends with or at least wear the same socks as.

The pattern was fairly easy to follow. I was a little nervous about the picot edge but it was quite easy to do. I used pins to hold the fold in place as I attached the cast on edge to the current round. The lacy cable stitch pattern was most easy on the eyelet rows and overall I had fun stitching it. There are a lot of "knit through the back loop" stitches which I used to find very annoying but got used to while knitting these socks.

The yarn is Sock Ease by Lion Brand. It's an affordable yarn made with a mix of wool and nylon. I used less than one ball to make these socks. Yay! Sadly, I have wool allergy and can no longer tolerate 100% wool but I find that this yarn is quite tolerable for foot wear and on my hands while knitting. The yarn is quite light weight and the pattern uses a size 1 needle. My only problem was keeping a steady grip of the yarn on my right hand while knitting. I had to keep re-wrapping. Do you have any suggestions or similar experiences with that?

Isn't the lace cable pattern just gorgeous? They're almost too nice to wear on one's feet. While we're talking knitting, if you're not on Ravelry yet, I recommend that you check it out. It's a great site for keeping track of your projects, supplies, library and planned projects. It's also great for looking up patterns and finding one that is right for your yarn.

Follow along with me here:

Charcoal Retro Rib Socks

The Fall season is the perfect time to break out your hand-knitted wool socks and boots. There's nothing quite so nice as a hand-knitted sock, warm and perfectly fitted. I started these socks almost a year ago and finally finished them over the weekend. As often happens, I stalled out on the second sock. The pattern is Retro Rib Socks by Evelyn A. Clark from the book Favorite Socks. I've used about 5 other patterns in this book. The designs are beautiful and it's definitely worth buying. You can check out all my knitting projects on Ravelry.

For these socks I used Patons Kroy Socks yarn and a size 2 double pointed needle. The yarn is 75% washable wool and 25% nylon, processed and blended enough that it doesn't bother my wool-sensitive skin. I had to adjust the pattern for my yarn and gauge but it worked out and the socks fit nice and snug.  The color is actually a charcoal black but the photos are pretty washed out. You can see the pattern quite well though.