Turn It Up To 11 - MKAL - Week 2

Ok, was that THE LONGEST WEEK EVER waiting for this second clue to come out? Right?! I know how many of you were excited to move forward and I'm so pleased you guys had fun. Trust me when I say I was as anxious as you were to move forward but I did promise a schedule and some lovelies didn't get their toes done until just yesterday so I feel less bad now.

Can we just look at some of the TOOOOOOOOOOOE NUBBINNNNNNNNNNNS from this past week? OMG! They're looking totes amazeballs! I've pulled a few from Instagram...

(using our MKAL Kit colorway "Sentimental Heart" from Black Market Wool)

(also using our MKAL Kit colorway "Tweeter and the Monkeyman" from Black Market Wool)

(a FIRST TIME sock knitter)

THE COLORS!  I am so excited to see what happens this week now that we've got a pattern to introduce to these yarns. I die!

Now, there were a few typo's in last weeks clue release and I apologize for that. It seems that a few folks found them right away and let me know (THANKS ladies) and I hope you weren't too frustrated with the second release just hours after the first. I was uber embarrassed but that's life right? Every pattern has to have a small error somewhere. Let's hope that was it, shall we?!

So now your toes are done and you're ready to get on to the instep. Let's DO this thing! And it's gonna be a chart! I know, I know, some people are better with written patterns but when it comes to something like this, with custom sizing, written instructions just don't work. I have done my best to make the chart as legible as possible. With that said, if you need larger charts let me know and I'll split it on to two pages. I figured many people would view it on a computer screen or an iPad and can zoom in, but I did see that some of you printed out hard copies. PLEASE DON'T BE SHY! Tell me what you need and I'll provide it happily!

Ok, so with the chart - I can already hear at least one person furiously typing me a text message saying "I hate you... starting rows with a purl stitch... dammit WOMAN!". Seriously, that's exactly what it'll say. Allow me to say this, then: if you don't WANT to start a row with a purl stitch, then don't! That's the beauty of a custom sock. You can do whatever you want to do with it.

IF you decide (and yes, that's supposed to be all caps, not a typo) to start each row with a knit stitch, and that's totally ok, you'll simply end up with a vertical line of stitches separating the front of your sock design from the back of your sock design. And that's A-OK in my books. Many folks who haven't yet sorted out their tension, and end up with ladders, will do this as purl stitches at the beginning of a row can look sloppy.

!!!!! Let me say: it's not a lack of ability in a knitter if there are ladders. It's simply something that everyone has to learn the trick of. Please don't get discouraged if you have a few ladders. Most will come out with blocking and wearing!!!!!!

However, with regards to starting a row with purl stitches: I think if you use the handy-dandy little trick in the pattern about purling with a backward wrap (i.e.: clockwise instead of counter-clockwise) that you'll find your tension is pretty darn good. It seems to have eliminated most of my issues.

I bet you're wondering WHY I've had you work rows that start with purl stitches if this is a teaching MKAL... because I can! Mwa ha ha ha!

Ok, for serious, though, because I want you to see that knit stitches and purl stitches worked in a variety of combinations won't affect your gauge and will allow you to continue to knit socks that fit. Some things do affect gauge, of course, like cables, YO's, dropped stitches, etc. but many combinations won't.

I want to encourage you all to start looking at patterns through new eyes: eyes that have seen YOU make socks that fit rather than just blindly following a pattern and ending up with socks that don't fit. Uh... been there. Done that. So over it. So now you'll be able to see how patterns work up, adjust for YOUR foot and always get socks that fit.

*stepping off my soap box*

Back to the program? Yes, let's shall.

So now you've got 60 rows of charted pattern to work on your socks. REMEMBER! You're knitting this pattern on the front of the socks ONLY! The back of the socks, which will be the soles of your socks, will be worked in stockinette (knitting every row). Please remember to stop your sock 2" short of the desired total length. We'll get into why next week.

Also! If you get to the end of the chart and still need more pattern to reach your desired length minus 2", patience grasshopper: next week will have more chart to work and details on the heels.

As always, if you have questions or are just downright lost (but hopefully not frustrated because I want you to love these socks) please ask questions here on the blog, on Ravelry in our discussion group (or private message me, I'm SoCalMeaghan), and of course you can come harass me on Instagram where I'm also @socalmeaghan.

If you're posting on InstagramFacebook or Twitter please use #unapologeticknitter, #tuksockmkal and/or #turnitupto11mkal so I can find you and see all your fabulous work. I'm so excited to be knitting with you all and look forward to seeing your toe nubbins crop up on social media!
Happy Knitting, lovelies!!!