Monday, January 09, 2006

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  • Issues with Argyle

    It's not easy being green.
    -Kermit the Frog

    Argyll, Scotland looks like a truely lovely place. Really, it does. And there's a certain classiness to argyle patterns, a timelessness even. In fact, the NYTimes Styles Section had several argyle vests this weekend (sorry - can't find the link). Then there's that cute pattern from Knitty. Granted, they speak of "drunken" argyle, but still. And not only is there an Argyle, NY, there's even a town called Argyle, TX.

    So why, after 8 hours of knitting argyle diamonds, am I left with a big pile of tangled yarn and 2 inches of 2x2 ribbing?

    For those of you who are going to jump in and tell me that I should just give up the ghost and forget about it, let's back up a few steps: It's a requirement for the TKGA Master Knitting Level 2. My thoughts and motivations regarding this program are a whole 'nother apple-in-my-eye post, but suffice it to say that I need to knit argyle socks.

    Things that Have Gone Wrong So Far:
    1. No pattern. Go ahead. Search. Try to find a pattern for argyle socks. The Socknitters' one calls for DK yarn. I have fingering. They call for 3 colors, TKGA calls for the "traditional" 4. Every other chart I find has no relation whatsoever to my 76 stitches.
    2. Splitty yarn. KnitPicks Essential. The price is right, the colors fun and contrasty (MC=Ash, CC1=Grass, CC2=Pumpkin, plus purple diagonals). But it splits like crazy.
    3. I can't count.
    4. Two orange diamonds should not be next to each other. I should not knit for 2 hours before figuring this out.
    5. 8 inch dpns. Intarsia needs to be knit flat. I have neither US1 circulars or straights that I can find, so the stitches keep falling off the ends.
    6. What is traditional argyle anyway? This is the big question that's holding me up right now. I would be delighted to have a sock with a single chain of diamonds running down the front instead of all-over argyle. It's elegant in it's simplicity, classy, it still shows my intarsia and duplicate stitch skills, etc. But the only thing worse than making one pair of argyle socks would be making two if they don't accept the first one.
    Continue in Kind has dubbed 2006 "The Year of the Frog." So far, that's what it's looking like around here - our knitting is definitely not sailing smoothly underway . . .


    Blogger Chris said...

    Oh, how maddening. Y'know, I think I have some old sock pattern booklets, because I remember seeing argyles. I'll take a look tonight and see if I can find something close to what you need.

    1/09/2006 7:05 AM  
    Blogger Laura said...

    Oh boy. Yikes. Can't help you with the pattern.

    I started ANOTHER pair of socks this weekend (which have since been frogged for gauge problems) in Essential and I noticed the same thing. Super splitty.

    1/09/2006 11:10 AM  
    Blogger Susan said...

    I'm VERY impressed - argyles sound really hard!

    I've got a pattern book from 1941 with men's argyle socks in it. The patterns were made for use with Chadwick's Red Heart Wools. I love these old patterns. Anyway, let me know if you are interested.

    1/09/2006 1:20 PM  
    Blogger Chris said...

    Ok. You will not believe where I found a 70 st (gauge 33 st/4" in SS) argyle pattern... Vogue Knitting on the Go: Socks. Yup. The one that's not in print anymore. Pages 34 - 37. Knit flat (the "correct" way). If you have questions about it, I'm egret17 on gmail.

    Another book that I looked through (1971) didn't even use the term "intarsia" - just "argyle" for that style of color knitting. Hmm. Guess I learned something!

    1/09/2006 3:15 PM  
    Blogger Lynda said...

    I love argyle- it may be the thing that makes me break down and learn Intarsia.

    1/09/2006 5:55 PM  
    Blogger Kristen said...

    Moth Heaven Julia is knitting a pair - I'm not sure where she found the pattern, but she's working on them now.

    (argyle socks? I, again, bow to your knitting ability.)

    (is it fate that the first three letters of the "word verification" are dpn?)

    1/09/2006 8:07 PM  
    Blogger lucia said...

    Ahh... but there is a stealth pattern of Argyle socks. Stealth because I can't stand the technique, and planned to knit another and make the interface work better.

    Go here:
    Stealth Argyle Sock pattern.
    Click submit... really. Later on, you can go back fiddle and change.

    Not recommended for the faint of heart!

    1/09/2006 8:20 PM  
    Blogger Beverly said...

    The "traditional" argyle sock has 4 colors. 1 - background color, 2 & 3 - the diamonds, and 4 - the crossing color. How long have you been a member of TKGA. They published and issue with an argyle sock pattern for people in the MK Level 2. I don't remember which issue offhand, but I'll check and see. They may have some back issues.

    1/10/2006 4:04 PM  
    Blogger Beverly said...

    I forgot to add. The "Stealth" argyle is only acceptable if you convert the pattern to seamless. They want the leg part to remain open. I'm guessing it's so that they can check the technique. I'm currently working on this part of level 2.

    1/10/2006 4:06 PM  
    Blogger Chris said...

    Have you checked out this AHRG!yle online class?

    1/14/2006 1:53 PM  

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