I put knitting away for the first two weeks of the semester, but now I've picked up the Norwegian Stockings again and I've made significant progress on the second sock. I started out as a very tight knitter, and that tendency definitely came through on the first stocking. By the time I was half-way through the first one I was able to relax a bit, but the damage had been done. You can see here the difference between the first and second sock:
They look like they were knit for different sized feet! I eventually loosened up on the first sock, right about when I decided to pick up each yarn as I needed it instead of carrying one in each hand. So I haven't quite picked up all of the intricate details of this new technique, but I'm enjoying the process.
This should give you some idea of how tight my knitting was on the first sock. I'm wearing the first sock in this picture, with some very stressed out stitches:
And here are the stitches while I'm wearing the second sock:
Ah, much better. For a while I had a grand scheme which involved knitting an extra sock top, cutting and picking up live stitches in the first sock, and then grafting a new top half to the old bottom with the proper colors for each stitch. Danger. Excitement. This grand scheme has, however, been rejected. At this point I have decided to either (A) frog down to the point where my stitches loosened up, and then knit back to the top as if I had begun from the toe, or (B) frog all the way down and start over. The attractiveness of option (A) is not having to knit a sock from the complete beginning. The problem is that I'm not sure how well I will be able to line up the patterns between the rehabilitated first sock and the second sock. The attractiveness of option (B) is being able to fix all of the mistakes I made the first time around and ending with a nearly identical pair of socks.
Now that I've loosened up my stitches the stocking will fit around the circumference of my calf, and so these will officially become knee socks. Here's one last laugh for you.