Sunday, May 31, 2015

For the love of Faux-isle

Arne and Carlos for Regia; colourway "Summer Night" 
If you follow knit-bloggers or are active on Instagram, you'll probably be feeling like these Arne and Carlos sock yarns are just everywhere at the moment.  I've seen dozens of posts featuring the beautiful self-patterning fair-isle in gorgeous Scandy-colourways and was pretty keen to get my hands on some to try for myself.  

Although not normally a fan of faux-isle yarn, I must admit I adore everything about this yarn for a number of reasons. Regia has always been a favourite sock yarn of mine.  It's got a sturdy fibre content with the inclusion of 25% nylon, knits to a decent mid-size gauge, and is good on price point too.

The self-patterning yarns do give you maximum impact for minimum effort too.  I had many converations on the train with people fascinated by how the pattern was emerging, and almost disbelief when I told them it was no knitting magic skill but just the yarn.  The most I did towards the patterning was to wind a bit off before starting the second sock so I could manage to get them matchy-matchy.  Still, impressive apparently so who am I to argue?

I worked them toe-up, starting with a Turkish cast-on and then following on from my pledge to keep trying new things, I decided to try the Fish Lips Kiss Heel.   I had been wondering about this heel method for sometime, as it had been mentioned of several of the podcasts I follow and people were singing it's praises.  

It is very simple to work - don't let the 16 pages of pattern notes put you off - and it fits my heel rather well.  I have rather skinny heels and ankles (as can be seen in the first photo!) and to date I haven't had good results with the fit of short row heels in the way I find a heel flap fits me.  This heel still struggles a little to address this, however the detailed instruction within the pattern notes on how to determine when to place the heel has resulted in a more accurate foot measurement, and that has definitely helped in this instance.

I will be interested to see how these wear in comparison to a slipped stitch heel flap, as my feeling is the stocking stitch heels may not be as sturdy along the "seam"?  As mentioned the yarn is true sock yarn, so I think it has been given the best chance possible and I remain hopeful. This is a limited edition colourway, so I am keen to have these socks last.

The sock drawer is looking decidedly healthy again now, but they are such good projects for the train so I think I'm just going to keep knitting them and start a little stockpile for gifts.  There is no shortage of sock yarn in the stash, and there are only so many socks and shawls one person needs, right? 

Do you ever have a quandary of the need for knits and the need to knit?  I'd love to hear all your methods of managing it, if you do?


Sue said...

The socks look great. I havent tried any of those colorways as yet. I havent tried the flk heel either but have had the pattern for quite a while. Perfect weather to be knitting socks too.

Jules said...

These are fabulous! Love! And your notes on the complexities of getting socks to fit make me so happy... there's so much beauty in your work. I want to knit these now!


Caffeine Girl said...

I had not heard about this yarn, but now that I have, I think I must give it a try myself. (Note to self: Must get on Instagram.) I love self-patterning yarns, but this one is a step-above.

I am hesitant to try any new heel. The traditional slip-stitch heel flap works so well!