Saturday, August 15, 2009

Sock Summit Details & pictures

I had fun in the market (yarn & books), but the reason I signed up was for the classes. Here’s too much info and pictures from Sock Summit.

Anne Hanson’s Sock Design, all day Thursday

The homework was to make several swatches in the project yarn and pick a pattern and needle size you wanted to use in a pair of socks. I misunderstood and used leftover sock yarn. Thrifty me. I used bigger-than-normal needles (US 2) because I didn’t want to knit forever on the swatches. So… I should have used the sock yarn I was going to use in my next pair of socks, and should have used the needles I would normally use (US 0). The class was still useful. We got as much 1 on 1 attention from Anne as we needed. She worked with me until she said she could see the light go on over my head. What I learned: How to modify stitch patterns so they fit into the size sock you want to make. It never occurred to me that I could pick just part of a stitch pattern as filler and it would look like it was meant to be. I guess if you are the designer, then is meant to be :-)

She used Knit Visualizer to demonstrate stitch pattern manipulation. If I were a designer, or did a lot of charting, I would certainly get Knit Visualizer. It’s a powerful, versatile, and useful tool.

The best way to take a class from Anne would be to take one of her longer classes, so you would have time between classes to work and think.

Abby Franquemont & Denny McMillan’s Spindle Spinning Basics, Friday morning

I learned to spin singles on a spindle. Abby and Denny explained twist and it’s energy. They didn’t try to put too much into a short class, which means we covered plying very briefly, but it was covered. This was a fun class and the teachers and teaching methods were good.

Set a World Record, Friday afternoon

Wahoo! 935 knitters participated to set the Guinness World Record. We knit together for 15 minutes. This Oregon Live video is fun. We had to use straight needles, so I used my new, purchased just for the world record, Lantern Moon needles. Very nice. They almost make me think straight needles are good. I worked on a baby sweater for the Chico Friends of the Library Fall Craft Faire.

Charlene Schurch’s Top-down Socks That Use Up All the Yarn, Sunday morning

There are three ways to ensure that you have enough yarn when working top down socks: 1) buy an extra skein of yarn; 2) make cuffs, heel, and toe in a different yarn; and 3) do a provisional cast on at the ankle and work the foot – then pickup at the ankle and work up to the cuff. FYI, Charlene figures that the cuff, heel, and toe are about 20% of the weight of a sock. She spent most of the time explaining option #3. We learned several different provisional cast ons. We learned several different and stretchy bind offs. We learned the pros and cons of using a provisional cast on. It was a worthwhile, very worthwhile, class.

I love Charlene’s books and taking a class from here was good, fun, no nonsense knitting. I’d do it again any time.

Luminary Panel, Sunday afternoon

What a treat! Everybody on the panel was inspiring, with the possible exception of Pricilla Gibson-Roberts (who sounds and acts so much like my Texan mother that I had an emotionally negative reaction to her). They talked about how knitting has changed from product to a process focus. They talked about women in business. They talked about people of color and why they are such a Sock Summit minority. (Side story: When somebody asked one of the coffee-selling vendors if they had ever seen so many white women in one place, he responded, “Not since the Lutheran convention.”)

We sang Happy Birthday to Elizabeth Zimmermann, whose 99th birthday would have been Sunday if she had lived that long. Panelists talked about Elizabeth’s influence on them.

The thank yous from Tina and Stephanie were gracious. I wish I had gone to the opening night reception so I could have heard more of the story of how Sock Summit came to be.


It was worth the long train ride to and from. I would do it again (not the train ride, but the Sock Summit). Here are some of the blurry photos taken with my iPhone. Sure wish I had gotten pictures of Melissa B., Don & Mike. Look at all these smiles!

Holly and Nigel:
Nigel and Holly at the Market

Me, Nigel and Duffy:
Me Nigel Duffy at the Market

Saturday was a day off and a trip to the Portland Art Museum (Escher was main attraction).
Saturday was a day off Escher Window at Portland Art Museum

Duffy (blurry) spinning:
Duffy Spinning

Awntie Mary at the Luminary Panel (center in white):
Awntie Mary at Luminary Panel


  1. Yep, the "Lutheran Convention" did it for me. What a hoot. Glad you had a good time at the sock summit. Renate

  2. it was so good to meet you in person! great pictures. thanks!

  3. Thanks for the pictures Diane. Yes, a good time was had by all. I have not yet downloaded my photos, so must do that soon.

  4. I didn't even have a Texan mother and Priscilla made my hair stand on end....grrr, you could tell the moment she would interrupt and start on a long tangent that eeryone wished they could somehow stop her!

  5. LOL, yep Priscilla was definitely the bottom of my list of people when I heard her speak - not only the voice but the content too. Yarnharlot was more than polite - I was impressed by her restraint. I would have been pulling out the very appropriate shepherd's hook.