But instead of working on my friend's socks, I cast on a pair for my Olympic Knitting challenge. Turns out, that was exactly what I needed to do. Working on those socks got me my knitting mojo back, and I've been burning up the needles ever since.
And now for the too-small socks. I ordered a kit from KnitPicks that came with patterns and yarn for seven pairs of ankle socks. I wanted something different and to practice knitting patterns from charts without committing to huge projects. However, from the kit's description, it wasn't clear, at least not to me, that all the socks are toe-up and two at a time on circular needles. I've never done toe-up let alone two at once on circs. After some trial and error and scribbling, I managed to convert the pattern to one sock at a time on DPNs, and I figured out how to cast on toe-up.
Unfortunately, despite checking my progress as I knit, I cannot get the sock on my foot. It's not because I bound off too tight, it's that the whole dang sock is too narrow. It's plenty long enough, but I can't get it over my heel. Obviously my gauge was off and the needles were too small. Le sigh.
Instead of making another too-small sock to match, I've decided to declare it a practice sock. My cast-on was wonky, and I know that there are some errors in the heel, which involved turn-and-wrap instead of short rows.
So I've cast on a new sock on larger needles, and so far things are going much better.