Horizontal, vertical, insane

What do you think?

I made it up myself :).

When thinking of a pattern for this yarn, I insisted on thinking horizontally… let me explain.

Consider cables, like the ones which adorn the cleverly-named Cable Rib Socks (Spring 2005 Interweave Knits):

Cables placed in this manner are vertical: they run along the length of the knitted item.

Now consider knitting in the round with a variegated yarn like this Opal. The little segments of color produce horizontal bursts of color – they run side to side with respect to the knitted item. The same thing is true of self-striping yarns, except the segments of color are significantly larger. Anyway, were I to overlay a vertical pattern repeat, such as cables, on top of horizontal coloration, the result can only be described as “poopy.” Yes, that’s a technical term which means, “neither the pretty color, nor the pretty pattern shows through.”

I decided that I’d be bored to tears knitting a simple stockinette stitch sock for my Sockapal-2-za pal. Also, I did a few rounds of simple stockinette, and this is not one of those yarns which forms interesting stripes as it’s knit up – the bursts of orange and teal are only 4 stitches long. Therefore I started with a pattern repeat which had 4 knit stitches as its basis, then added a little “glam” without compromising the horizontal nature of this handpainted yarn.

So there you have it!


38 thoughts on “Horizontal, vertical, insane

  1. kris

    i think it looks fab. love how the zig-zagging enhance the variegated yarn without making it “poopy”. those are some beautiful colours as well.

  2. AmyP

    Ooohh… that is nice.

    [insert more Homer Simpson-style drooling noises]

    Do I need therapy for all of this drooling over a pair of socks?

  3. corine

    brilliant! i’ve often wondered how to jazz up my variegated socks. your idea is genious! are you offsetting increased with decreases at regular intervals? my little brain is trying to work it out, share please.

  4. atouria

    That looks really awesome. I’m with the others in trying to look at it and figure out how in the heck you made that cool design. That’s so neat!

  5. jess

    I love that (and your sockpal will, too!). I think it might be perfect for some of my handpainted opal I have lying around, too… hm.

  6. Kate

    SHOW US HOW!!!!

    🙂 I love this sock pattern! super cute and you are right- great for nicely painted yarn….

    once again:


  7. Carolyn

    Oh yes, this is very nice! You put so much thought into your knitting…and it makes a difference. You inspire me to think more about what I am doing with my knitting! I love the pattern and look forward to seeing it in your sidebar…hint, hint.

  8. Danielle

    Mmm! Love them, love them, love them! I love the way your mind works. That explanation made perfect sense to me. Is this kind of similar to the concept of the Knitty Broadripple socks, maybe also with a different kind of increase (no yarn overs = no holes)?

    I just started a great pair of toe up KPPPM socks, and I have to rip them (think they need a tighter gauge). I’d love to try this pattern — are you going to tell us what you did?

  9. Laura

    Poopiness! Finally, a term that I can use to explain why I am not a big fan of varigated yarns. I think your stitch pattern looks good with the sock yarn. It is one the few times that I’ve seen a successful use of texture with a varigated yarn.

  10. Karma

    Oh, that looks good, it’s like a chevron without the Enron. (Well, without the poopy factor, anyway.) I would definitely wear those.

  11. Stephanie

    Beautiful – wouldn’t even dare consider being poopy. Another pattern for you to share with the masses – I’ve got some varigated yarn I can use this on. Oh goody.

  12. anne

    heavens to sockiness, that is beautiful — and please share the pattern — maybe we can all send yarn if you put the pattern up?

  13. Leslie

    So much interesting the way you knitted it up! Are you going to share your revised pattern (pls)?

  14. nona

    You’ve hit the nail on the head! No poopiness — is that a technical term? — at all with the vertical/diagional of the pattern and the bursts of color accents.

  15. paula

    Wow! LOVE those! Gorgeous colors and just the right amount of “oomph” to break up the striping a bit.

    LOVE them!

    (Did I mention how much I love them?)

  16. ~Jo~

    After checking the Loop-d-Loop book and reading the ballet t-shirt pattern, I am SO happy I stumbled upon your new tivoli pattern. THANK YOU!!! I hope to start one for myself soon. Your new sock sure isn’t poopy, can we hope you’ll share your secrets in detail? 🙂

  17. Liz

    Lovely socks! I like to use the toe-up chevron sock pattern (free from elann) for my lornas and the like. I’ve also found the broadripple pattern to work nicely as well. So how are you doing the chevrons without visible yo’s?

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