Since ireth_telruenya likes garish colors, I decided to make her socks for next year in the loudest colorway of Socks that Rock I could find.
Now, the thing about loud colorways is that you can't actually do anything with them. Cables? Totally lost in the color. Lace? Ditto. So none of my usual sock-enhancing techniques are a good idea.
The thing is, at this point, I've got three knitting projects: my timed socks (at the moment, I've got 23 grams of yarn knitted up, and 28 grams left in the ball, in 629 minutes of TV-watching, so we're looking at about 20-30 hours per sock), a green sock I started when I needed something to do when I was stumped on Faramir II, and which, while I have vague plans of doing something interesting on the leg, have plain undecorated feet, and ireth_telruenya's socks. After a while, doing plain socks all the time just got boring.
The one thing that does show up beautifully with garish yarn is knitting in strange directions, that is, going in zigzags. So I decided to make these socks into Jaywalkers. This is sort of a homebrew Arielized mix of bigger Jaywalkers (apparently we have big feet, or STR lightweight is thin, or something) and doing them toe-up instead of cuff-down.
So I started that and then I realized the problem with Jaywalkers. You start out with a toe, with a nice smooth top, and then you attach a zigzag-shaped piece of fabric. I don't know if this is a bigger problem with more-stitch Jaywalkers (I think mine have more stitches around than the biggest size she provides instructions for), or a toe-up thing (the middle of the sock is being pulled in by the zigzag rather than pushed out) or with working with stiffer yarn or what, but attaching a straight-edged toe to a zigzag leads to wonkiness for me: stretched out bits, puffy bits, ugh.
(I tried to take photos to show you what I meant, but they came out badly, and I didn't realize that they would until after I'd unraveled this bit. This picture and this picture show some of what I'm talking about.)
So I decided to fix this by throwing in some short rows under the high points (the increases) of the zigzag. While it isn't giving me a totally smooth fabric, it's considerably better than before.
This is the turtle from Walker III I mentioned earlier. It's about 2½'' wide and about 5'' tall.
The book doesn't really convey how multidimensional this thing is:
While this is sort of okay for, say, a blanket, I think I'd like this thing to lie a little flatter if I used it for a sweater. And frankly, I think I'm a good enough cable designer to do better than this. So I'm probably going to be doing a lot of redesigning of this thing before I use it in a garment.