Sunday, November 16, 2014

dusty is a lousy model

One of the big requests for a second project by the beginner knitters in my classes has been for fingerless mitts. I have found that even knitting in the round on a circular needle is a bit of a mind-bender for most beginners, so double-pointed needles are right out.

It shocks the mind that, sixty or so years ago, the first knitting project tackled by most high school girls was argyle socks. Talk to women of a certain age about knitting, and that's a common refrain: the last thing they knit was argyle socks. Usually right about the time they are discussing how difficult they find knitting in the round on a circular needle to be. This boggles my mind, because argyle socks are not an easy thing to knit, and certainly not a beginner sort of project. I have never attempted them, in part because I don't have anyone in my life who would be interested in wearing them, but also because they are a lot to get your mind and hands around. Although they are knit flat, you have to manage a crazy number of bobbins wound with various colors of yarn. Obviously not a travel project, and since portability is a key component of almost everything I undertake, that also knocks them out of the running.

From Bear Brand Hand Knits for Men circa 1952

But this didn't stop teenage girls in the forties and fifties. It was the done thing to knit them for your significant other, so knit them they did. Some with more success than others, I suspect, but it is yet another comment on the lengths to which teenage girls will go. At least then it was the relative innocence of socks.

So back to my present-day fingerless mitts problem... I decided they needed to be knitted flat and then seamed. All three pairs of samples have been knit, and I managed a quick photo shoot on Thursday, but photos of the unisex pair didn't look quite right. I asked Secondo to help me, and being the kind cooperative soul that is usually is, he readily agreed. We needed a prop... Not pinecones or a coffee cup. Thanks to Gale Zucker I now know: No. Done to death.

So we asked Dusty to assist.

The first challenge was getting him to look at the camera. I would call him, he would look up at the person who was petting him.

Or at the car driving by on the street. Neither of which, of course was me. This dog is not the sharpest tool in the shed.

Then he got completely out of control and started barking wildly, pretending that the person wearing the gloves was trying to pull his ear off.

Though upon second look at least the knitwear in that last shot is in focus.

My final shot of the session, taken accidentally and discovered when I went to review the photos:

Apparently all he wanted was a picture of himself, with no knitwear in sight.


  1. LOL. BTW, my Mom was one of those girls knitting argyle socks. There must be something genetic about that because Number 2 son asked me a couple of days ago if I can knit him argyle socks to wear when he is curling. Do you know of any argyle sock patterns?

  2. Beyond me why people can't knit on dpns. I learned on them when I was about six! also on straights. Oh well. And I think Dusty's not interested in playing second fiddle to a bunch of mitts, this is a prima donna!

  3. This pictures are hilarious! Looks like Dusty got the spotlight he so craved. Nice mitts, too :D

  4. It is funny to see those old patterns. I didn't think it could be difficult to do socks on dpns when I was a kid and just did them! I still use dpns a lot. Can't get the hang of that magic loop!

    I never did knit Argyles, but they were definitely very high profile in the pattern department.