Sunday, March 07, 2010

Sugar Plum Thrums



Or, "Toe-Up Toe Socks for Toe Shoes"

Pointe Shoes hurt. There are no two ways about it. When I danced I padded my shoes with fluff and soft found objects. I wrapped my toes and wore Toe Socks. Toe Socks were the cut off heads of old socks who had lost their mates.
My preferred padding Before & After

Sugar Plum Thrums are the best of two worlds. They fit snuggly into the shoe and keep the padding from traveling down to the toe. The majority of the padding is placed over the knuckles. There is none at the back of the foot.
These Toe Socks are so comfy cozy you may not want to take them off. Well, maybe just to admire them.
The fleece padding makes the sock take the shape of a pointed foot. So cute!

This pattern follows the formula for two knitting mainstays; Toe-Up Socks and Thrummed Mitts. The instructions are written to appeal to dancers and Mums of dancers who may not be used to knitting these items.

Parents note: I know what I'm talking about. I studied ballet for many years at both R.A.D. and Cecchetti credited schools. My feet would have been flat but for my early start in dance and as a result pointe work was a bit more difficult for me. These Toe Socks would have been a boon!


Materials:
Sock or Fingering Weight Yarn -approx. 100m
-Lucy Neatby's "Celestial Merino Dream" Superwash merino shown.
2.5mm double pointed needles (DPNs) set of 5.
Two Handfuls of Fleece. The type is not important, but if you have a choice, go for a sheep breed with a long staple (long hairs).

Make Thrums ahead of time. Twony for scale.

Interweave has a good guide to making thrums. Refer to photos in this pattern for size. I advise making a whole bunch of thrums in one go. It is annoying to get into the swing of your knitting and then have to pause to make a thrum.
Interweave also has a good tutorial for knitting the thrums into your work.

The instructions for rows with thrums are written as follows:
(example)
4. (row number)
K1, Thrum, K2, Thrum, K1 (instructions for stitches on dpn #1)
K1, Thrum, K2, Thrum, K1 (instructions for stitches on dpn #2)
Knit (instructions for stitches on dpn #3; knit every stitch)
Knit (instructions for stitches on dpn #4; knit every stitch)

Inc: Knit into the stitch below, then knit the stitch. Knitpicks has a tutorial on this increase here.

Pattern:
Cast on 8 stitches over two DPNs using the Figure 8 method (easier) or Judy Becker's Magic Cast On (nicer:link).
Knit 2 rows on these two dpns.
Photo shows simple figure 8 cast on

1. Divide as follows:
With a new dpn, inc, K3 (1st dpn has 5 stitches)
With a new dpn, K3, inc (2nd dpn has 5 stitches)
With a new dpn, inc, K3 (3rd dpn has 5 stitches)
With a new dpn, K3, inc (4th dpn has 5 sitches)
20 stitches total, over 4 dpns.

2.
K2, Thrum, K2
Thrum, K2, Thrum, K1
Knit
Knit

3.
Inc, knit to end
Knit to last stitch, inc
Inc, knit to end
Knit to last stich, inc
(6 sts on each dpn)


The Thrums count as stitches. The next row will be an increase row.
4.
K1, Thrum, K2, Thrum, K1
K1, Thrum, K2, Thrum, K1
Knit
Knit

5. Work as for row 3 (7 sts on each dpn)

6.
K3, Thrum, K2, Thrum
K2, Thrum, K2, Thrum, K1
Knit
Knit

7. Work as for row 3 (8 sts on each dpn)

8. Knit each stitch in round.

9. Work as for row 3 (9 sts on each dpn)

10.
K3, Thrum, K2, Thrum, K2
Thrum, K2, Thrum, K2, Thrum, K2
Knit
Knit

11. Work as for row 3 (10 sts on each dpn)

12. Knit each stitch in round.

13. Work as for row 3 (11 sts on each dpn)

14.
K3, Thrum, K2, Thrum, K2, Thrum, K1
K1, Thrum, K2, Thrum, K2, Thrum, K3
Knit
Knit


Knit into the thrums as if they were normal stitches. Give the fleece a tug after you knit into the thrumed stitch.

15. Work as for row 3 (12 sts on each dpn)

16. Knit each stitch in round.

17. Work as for row 3 (13 sts on each dpn)

18.
Thrum, K2, Thrum, K2, Thrum, K2, Thrum, K2, Thrum
K2, Thrum, K2, Thrum, K2, Thrum, K4
Knit
Knit

Here ends the thrumming section.
Note that there are no thrums on the back side.

19. Knit each stitch in round.

20-22
K2, P2 rib
*You may choose to slip the last stitch of the 1st dpn to the 2nd dpn and the 1st stitch of the 4th dpn to the 3rd dpn to make the ribbing easier to manage.

Cast off in rib pattern.
Turn inside out. Weave in ends and give all thrums a sharp tug downwards.
Now Bourrée.
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