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Neldoreth Socks.

Yarn: Novita Pikkusisko #010 off-white
Needles: 2.5 mm
Size M

These were my third Socktober socks. I was searching for sock patterns on Ravelry when I came across this pattern and it ticked every box for me. First of all, I was looking for something to knit with fingering weight yarn. I also wanted to knit something that was quite minimalistic but still elaborate, with no fair-isle knitting and no lace. I wanted to knit the socks in off-white Novita Pikkusisko I had in my stash; I had previously used the same yarn for another pair of socks - my Rumpelstiltskin socks - and wanted to use it again. I really like the white Rumpelstiltskin socks because they are not your typical woolen socks but look very delicate. They can be worn even with a bit fancier outfit like when you are visiting people and I wanted another pair of socks like that.

The second reason why I loved this pattern was that I'm a sucker for traveling twisted stitches and everything even remotely Tolkien. The introduction text of the socks gave me some chuckles: the designer confessed thinking about elves every time he saw twisted stitches weaving in and out of each other -  it's good to know that there are other people like me. I thought of elves and Tolkien and Rivendell immediately when I saw these socks, even before noticing the name of the socks and realizing the designer had drawn inspiration from Tolkien's Silmarillion. So there was no other option for me but to cast on for these socks. And boy, do I love them!

Somehow I got into my head that these socks would be a good project to try and learn to knit two socks at a time. I've always suffered from a really bad case of second sock syndrome: it's really hard for me to cast on for the second sock after binding the first one off my needles since my inspiration is already somewhere else and I would like to get on with other projects. These socks weren't probably the easiest ones to try to figure out the TAAT method, but I managed to get them done nonetheless. In the hindsight I probably should have started with a sock pattern that was specifically designed to be knitted TAAT, but I usually never do things the easiest way anyway. I had some headache over rearranging and moving stitches around to get to the heel flap and then again with picking up stitches along the sides of it, but I did puzzle it all out in the end.

I don't know why I have never tried knitting two socks at a time before. I guess I've always thought it looked really hard and complicated, but actually it's not. It's so much faster than knitting first one socks and then trying to retrace your steps to make the other one look identical. Not to talk about the aforementioned  second sock syndrome and trying to pep yourself up to start (and finish) the second one of the pair. The person who came up with the idea of knitting both socks at the same time is my new hero!

Every now and then I had a feeling that these socks took ages to knit; I found myself wondering how come the cuffs weren't further along or why it felt like the gusset decreases just kept going on and on and on. I started to get frustrated before remembering that I'm knitting the both socks simultaneously and I wouldn't have to repeat the whole process again the way I'm used to when knitting one sock at a time. The realization made me happy every time.

The only modification I made for these socks was that I left out the third pattern repeat from the cuff: I only did 2 whole repeats of the main cable and then repeated the rows 1-9 once more as instructed. I think the length of the cuff is just right without the extra repeat.

As much as I love the look of traveling twisted stitches I think I'm going to take a small break from them for a while. After knitting these socks and before them the Stricken socks I feel like I've done enough of them for the time being... :)


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