It Was About Time

Back in July, I shared a finished sock with Three Waters Farm Storm’s End Merino + Nylon Self-Striping Yarn. I finished sock #1 in time to coordinate with the Three Waters Farm launch of the yarn and share my project here. I cast-on sock # 2 straight away, but courtesy of a busy summer, it was set aside, languishing while I did other things. I know a lot of people suffer from second sock syndrome regularly, but I generally do not so this stood out in my world. A very pretty thorn in my side, waiting not so quietly for its turn to be finished.

Fast forward to a couple weeks ago. A very good knitting friend, who had recently traveled from Texas to Wisconsin in the Friends of Knitting Sarah Ravelry Group‘s real life meet-up at the Wisconsin Sheep & Wool festival, was knitting away on her Rainbow Warrior shawl and realized she was in danger of running out of this same Three Waters Farm yarn. Knowing how much yarn I usually use for socks, I had a feeling that I would have yarn leftover when I finished that second sock. I went over to the finished sock, weighed it, did the math, and sure enough, I would have quite a bit leftover.  She was less than a week from binding off at that point, so I got the lead out and finished that second sock in a couple of days.


It’s amazing what you can do when you have a finite deadline on something!


In fact, you can finish up a sock that’s been sitting idle for months in just a couple of days!


And in the process, you can be reminded why you loved this project to begin with — awesome yarn, fun pattern, it’s got it all!


I put this squarely in the “unfortunately/fortunately” category — unfortunately my friend found herself playing yarn chicken and yet fortunately it inspired me to get that sock finished. It was about time!

And while I’m knitting a hush-hush project on those needles at the moment, I’ve got a new sock project all picked out for when I get the hush-hush project finished up (I’m halfway there, btw).


This beautiful 100% Organic Polwarth handspun that I spun up at the end of the Tour de Fleece earlier this year…


And I am going to make some stunning socks with it, I think.

img_8392I’ve been slow to share these skeins because they are a bit over-twisted in spots as I attempted to ply them on my Schacht Reeves. For a while I didn’t quite understand what was going wrong, why I was struggling, and therefore why the skeins has extra twist. I’ve finally gotten to the point that I wholly understand that I’ve not yet mastered plying on the whole double drive thing and that’s ok. And I don’t need to be shy about that. I don’t have to know how to make it all work right away and I can take the time I need to learn new things. Considering this yarn will be destined for socks and high twist on socks generally lends itself to durability, the over-twisted spots shouldn’t hurt the project at all.

While it’s true that this handspun yarn would have been enough motivation for me to get those Zigzagular Socks finished eventually, knowing I could potentially help a friend definitely helped to spur me along. It just goes to show that when it comes to motivation, it comes in many forms. As knitters, I think we just have to learn to grab on to those powerful motivators when they arise and let it drive our projects from the WIP column over to the FO one. At the end of the day, whatever gets the job done, right?! I’m sorry that my friend had to deal with the stress of yarn chicken, but at the same time I’m thankful because she gave me the motivation I needed to get those socks done sooner than later. She inspired me to forge onward and upward & thus helped me put a new pair of socks in my sock drawer and another pair of socks on the horizon. It was about time!

14 thoughts on “It Was About Time”

  1. The socks turned out SO beautifully! Glad to help motivate, but even gladder that you were such a good friend to help if needed. You’re the very best and I will TOTALLY return the favor if ever needed. It’s just what knitters do! 😘
    And BTW, that polwarth is glorious. Proud of you for not beating yourself up for being less than perfect – although, this ‘non-spinner’ could never tell the difference and the resulting pretty socks won’t care!

    1. I so agree with you — it IS what knitters do! ❤

      Thanks, also, for the kind words on the Polwarth. I'm sure you've knit with overtwisted skeins — I've had commercial yarn that's overtwisted, but of course I'm so much more critical of my handspun. XD

  2. I have found with my Ashford DD Traditional wheel that I need a lighter amount of tension, but that as I fill the bobbin it need to be slightly increased as I keep plying. While I know a Shacht Reeves isn’t an Ashford Traditional, this might help.

    1. That’s what I recognize with my Scotch tension Lendrum and I just haven’t quite cracked the code on “slight increase” on the Schacht Reeves yet. I mean, I understand how to do it, but the fine tuning isn’t quite there yet. I will keep at it!

  3. I am so glad that you finished the socks, because they are stunning! And this story points out the truth of what my mother said about you on the way home from Wisconsin. “She is one of the lovliest people I ever met, she is truly nice and kind.” It is true, and you just glow with it. So it is no surprise to me that you leaped into finishing that sock so that Kendra would not have to wait if she lost at yarn chicken. (and I will keep on telling you this thing Mom said because i think we don’t hear good things about ourselves often enough. 🙂 )

    And about your pretty handspun – I spent last night reading through my spinning books, and there was a lot of talk about when you WANT higher twist in yarn, so I would just say that you have mastered that, and socks are a good application for highly twisted yarns. And you like to knit socks, so please give yourself a pat on the back for making great sock yarn, and permission to continue practicing and exploring. 🙂

    1. Totally there with you and Marty on Sarah’s inner goodness – it will embarrass her to know she “shines”, but she really does!

    2. You are the sweetest — hugs again to you & your awesome mom! Thank you!

      And I’ll agree on the yarn. High twist *is* good for socks, so while I always want my skeins to look *just* right I probably did create a nice sturdy sock yarn!

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