I don't know about you but I definitely have stages of knitting projects. The beginning is always excitement, when I finally settle on a pattern and yarn that I want to work on. Typically at least 40% of the project happens very quickly because I am so thrilled to be working on something new, this is the stage when I am really keen on lace, or cables, or both! Then 41-75% are a pretty solid "I'm not really excited about this like a small child but I am enjoying the knit and have the pattern down in my mind". It's 75-100% that is the danger area, at that point I am bored and want to be done, I really need the last bit of the project to reflect my need for speedy completion.
I thought about this a lot when I was designing Scarlet Arches, I wanted an ornate sock pattern that created a simply gorgeous result but still hit those percent markers for ultimate knitting enjoyment. This one is top down with the most interesting parts on the cuff, you can take that new project excitement and put it directly into Cables, Lace and Nupps. The heel is a standard flap heel, I feel like they go pretty quickly so you can get it out of the way before you lose momentum.
The the lower part of the sock has a transition chart to move from the cuff cable pattern to the foot pattern.This is the 41-75% (not actually, I think it is more like 20% of the actual knitting but you get the idea). The transition chart is most of what you already have completed and you can see the easy road ahead.
And now the 75-100% let's be done already! So I designed the foot to have a simple repeating section with stockinette on the sole. This way you can bring it to knitting group where everyone can ooh and aww over the cuff section while you expertly knit the foot without even glancing at the chart. Sneaky no? lol
Scarlet Arches is the latest pattern in a brilliant collaboration with Sarah Hollandsworth of Yarn Geek Fibers. I thoroughly enjoyed using her Super Geek! Sock yarn for this project, it has incredible twist that really makes the cables, lace and nupps stand out. It has 75% wool and 25% nylon for great wear and warmth and her subtly dyed colors are luscious.
The actual design was inspired by three stitch patterns I came across, since I couldn't decide on just one I ended up combining them. My most favorite part was the nupps (bobble type things) placed right between the lace and the cables. It reminded me of arches of bleeding heart flowers, or scarlet runner beans up a trellis. The trouble was I had a heck of a time working the nupps in the round, it was just... cumbersome. I knew that I didn't want to make the nupps into bobbles (because then you are flipping the knitting back and forth working on the rightside and wrongside> there is nothing I dislike more than an "in the round" technique that makes me flip to the wrongside) So I needed to brainstorm a way to get those 5 made stitches knit together in a manner that was easier than actually knitting the 5 together.
The solution is laying the active yarn over the left tip and lifting the 5 stitches over one by one with the right tip, works like a charm and so much easier than knitting the 5 together.
This pattern has both charted and written instructions, my test knitters loved knitting their socks and I hope you do too!