Monday, March 05, 2007

Mamluke Socks

Mamluke Socks
Originally uploaded by Sophie_vf.
Susan at the Folk Socks Knitalong did a terrific job getting members revitalized by issuing a February challenge to knit one of the socks that had already been done in the past year, since so many of us had WIP's that were malingering or else missed the sock when it was originally posted. The Mamluke was the KAL selection some time last spring or summer, and I just don't do colorwork when it's hot out. So it was a perfect time to catch up on a sock I'd always meant to try.

Wendy Guernsey is not readily available here and is rather expensive online, but I noticed that a number of other knitters successfully did this sock in standard fingering weight - this is the pair that pushed me over the edge. I liked the effect of slow-striping Trekking in the Iris Garden, so chose a similar slow-striping Fortissima for the main colour for the Mamlukes, and a cream Regia for the pattern colour. I'm pretty happy with how they turned out. It took me four tries to find the right gauge and tension, but once I got that it was a relatively smooth knit.

I replaced the "Allah" pattern bands with an Estonian star and a scroll motif from Anna Zilboorg - a poster on the KAL mentioned that during a workshop, Nancy Bush requested that knitters replace the Allah motif with something else from now on, and that the original socks she copied were likely to have been funeral socks. The scroll still has an eastern feel, I think, and serendipitously, one of the other Egyptian socks in the book has a star similar to the Estonian one, so it seems to work. I forgot to add the little dots in the rightmost sock, so I'll have to duplicate stitch that in, some day. Or not.

I liked the way the heel looks, and it's not uncomfortable, but it seems shallow, and not bendy enough. If I ever knit this again, I would sub in a short row or afterthought heel, but keep the stripes. I liked those.

They really are the same size, at least when stacked on top of another. I'm not sure why the right one looks bigger. Maybe the different colour changes.

Fortissima Colori and Regia
2.75 mm Inox circulars
Mamluke socks from Nancy Bush's Folk Socks
knit in fits and starts throughout February 07

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