My sister has been visiting this week, and we've been knitting like fiends -- on socks of course. (She learned how to do a short-row toe!) Yesterday, Jason took the day off to be able to spend my birthday with me, and we all decided to go down to Half Moon Bay in the hopes of getting a nice little ocean breeze -- so of course we also had to stop by Fengari, the little yarn shop downtown, where Jason suggested I get something for myself for my birthday.
I got a couple of skeins of the new Kafe Fasset self-striping sock yarn, three skeins of Noro cashmere (it gets cold on the San Francisco State campus, so I need a warm scarf or something), a skein of emerald-green Malabrigo for Emily, and two books -- the "Favorite Socks" books from Interweave, and "New Pathways for Sock Knitters" by Cat Bordhi.
I'd seen "New Pathways" last week when I got together with some friends to hang out and knit, and I instantly coveted it -- I love learning new ways to construct stuff. I've mused, as one does, about different ways of making socks, but Cat Bordhi actually sits down and figures out how. Apparently this book is the first in what is going to be a series of "New Pathways" books, which I think is a really exciting prospect, because this book alone presents eight new ways of constructing a sock, and all of them are clever and intruiguing. I couldn't resist trying out the "Sky Architecture" learning sock pattern, and while I of course made some changes -- subbing my decreases for Bordhi's, arranging my needles in a way that made sense to me -- I essentially followed her directions and feel confident that I have the concept down.
There are a lot of cool sock patterns in this book -- at least one that I'd like to make in each different architecture -- and Bordhi gives tips for those of us who are likely to add our own stitch patterns and designs to these architectures. I appreciate that. I also really like the schematics which illustrate the essense of how each type of sock is constructed.
My main criticism of the book is that it doesn't seem to have decided whether its audience is experienced sock knitters, or beginners. The title is "New Pathways for Sock Knitters," which suggests to me that it's audience is people who already have experience knitting socks and want something new, but the book itself explains everything, and seems to assume that the knitter might never have knit a sock at all. Experienced sock knitters -- the people I think is this book's likeliest audience -- will probably find the patterns overwritten.
Overall, though, I think I'll have a lot of fun with the book, and I may have to abandon my second Monkey for now, in favor of one of these new patterns. Yes, I have the attention span of a goldfish when it comes to knitting. Oh, and by the way, the yarn in that photo is something I spun with the Fiber Fiend hand-dyed fiber I got at Stitches, in the "Willows" colorway.