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January 22, 2007

Shoo Vanity, Shoo!

nona's feeling a tad -- just a tad -- bit disheartened over her knee-highs.  Don't worry, sympathetic reader, it has nothing to do with the knitting, the needles, the yarn, or the stitch pattern -- all of which I love.  No, this small hovering black cloud is the result of -- gasp -- vanity!  I love working on my stocking, but every time I stop to gaze at the thing it looks way too big.  Yet when I try on the gigantic beast, it fits tautly around my shapely and sporty calf.  Good gracious!  My calf cannot be that big!  Shoo vanity, shoo!  I'm loving this stocking and don't want anything to spoil my pleasure.

I'm loving my stocking and have started the calf shaping.

I'm currently in the middle third of the stocking leg -- the part where all the action occurs -- and am decreasing the calf stitches down to the ankle stitches over a series of decrease rounds.   Care to hear all the juicy details of how?  Read on my inquisitive friend, read on!

When last we met, I had cast on for my stocking, had work the first third of the leg, and was poised to shape the calf.

Shaping the Calf
In the middle third of the leg I need to decrease from 110 stitches (10 repeats of the Lace Cable stitch pattern) down to 66 stitches (6 repeats).  This decreasing needs to be done over the middle third of my stocking, giving me 13.5 / 3 == 4.5 inches to decrease 110 - 66 == 44 stitches.  Since I'm going to decrease 2 stitches per decrease round, I'll need 44 / 2 = 22 decrease rounds to get the job done.   With 4.5 inches to work with, this gives me 4.5 x 10 = 45 rounds to work the 22 decrease rounds.  45 / 22 = 2 (rounded), telling me I need to work the decrease round every 2 rounds. 

Next, I need to determine where to decrease the 2 stitches in each decrease round.  Typically this is done on either side of a "seam" stitch running down the center back of the leg.  My stitch pattern did not gracefully accommodate a seem stitch, so I'm using the 6 stitch cable portion of the first Lace Cable repeast to be my "seam" stitches.  I'll leave the 6 stitch cable intact and decrease one stitch on either side.

The result:

When the stocking leg measures 4.5 inches, shape the calf by decreasing 2 stitches every other round 22 times.  The first stitch is decreased in the 7th and 8th stitches of the round -- leaving the first 6 stitches for the cable intact -- and the second stitch is decrease in the last 2 stitches at the end of the round.  66 stitches are left when all decreasing is completed.  Continue on these 66 stitches until the stocking leg measures 13.5 inches. 

January 22, 2007 in Project - Elizabeth Z., Project - Socks | Permalink


The sock looks great! I have the same feeling about my calves. I've been designing a toe-up knee high, and it looks disproportionate even though it's not. The pattern is lace, which shrivels when I take it off my leg, but on the first sock, I inserted a bit of elastic in the top edge, which doesn't shrink somehow, and makes the top edge look gigantic!

Posted by: Heather | Jan 22, 2007 1:14:51 PM

Just remember, Nona - real women have curves!! :) Best of luck on finishing the knee highs.

Posted by: Alison Jacobson | Jan 22, 2007 4:14:16 PM

The stocking is looking cute (and plenty skinny)! I can't wait to see how it turns out.

Posted by: Sarah | Jan 22, 2007 4:29:12 PM

The knee highs look great! Remember, everything laying flat looks BIG. I often tell this story when remembering funny stories about my mom. It was shortly after I'd had my baby and was still sporting a few extra pounds. I wasn't huge mind you, but still. I was sewing myself a some pants. Stretchy ones. Don't ask. I felt comfy wearing those things at the time. Well, I was just holding the darn thing up to look at them before hemming when my mom walked in and said, "Good Lord! Whose are those? She must be huge!". She felt bad about it when I told her they were mine. We did laugh about it, eventually. And I still do.

Posted by: Anne | Jan 22, 2007 5:34:29 PM

It's better than having stick-straight calves, no? And thanks for the detailed explanation. Sometimes I have to literally chart out these things as they don't make intuitive sense to me.

Posted by: stefaneener | Jan 22, 2007 8:17:41 PM

wow...I love that stitch pattern! Your own?

Posted by: Lori in Michigan | Jan 23, 2007 5:51:31 PM

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Posted by: williams jersey | Aug 17, 2011 1:03:22 AM

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