In the past, I've not been a fan of sock-knitting. Also, in the past, I have done only top-down socks. Easier to get started, but the ever-present frisson of will-I-have-enough-yarn not only to get to one toe, but to finish a second sock that matches the first?
Before our road trip down to Tennessee, I bought Wendy Johnson's toe-up book and a skein of Dream in Color Smooshy. Between here and Paducah, Kentucky, home of the National Quilt Museum, I started, re-started, and started again. The goal was a wide-ish toe and a sock that was snug but not too tight. I put it aside while in Tennessee and worked on a shawl, then came home and re-instituted the pursuit of a toe-up sock knit by someone who knits in a loose gauge but has small feet.
Yesterday, I decided to make a fresh start with the second ball of yarn and a new beginning. I'm definitely closer - a toe-up sock that borrows Joan's Favorite Toe method of increasing, working 1 round, increasing and working two rounds twice, and increasing, working three rounds, twice. We Shall See.
And the National Quilt Museum? Amazing. On the way down, I saw a quilt with images of Darfur, including a woman in tears: a white background with very subtle stitching that created shadows of images of women and children fleeing the scenes of tragedy. On the way back home, we stopped at 4:40 pm on Memorial Day, sweet-talked our way past the woman at the desk who said the museum was closing, and saw more beauty, including a quilt called Buckskin: the color of a well-worn buckskin from the Wild West, with elements that shaded from deep purples through iron-reds, and the most beautiful, subtle stitching highlighting the piecing.