My lacy leaves are coming along well. The Wall Street Journal recently reported on “sandals” which were actually made like sneakers with huge holes in them. Popular with men who are shy about showing their toes, these are sandals in only the broadest sense. Just so, a lace stitch done in sport-weight wool is only lace in the broadest sense.
There are two kinds of leaf laces. One is leaf shapes tessellated with yarn-over filigree between them. The other — and the one I am making is one of these — has stockinette leaves embossed onto a reverse stockinette ground, with yarn-overs forming the veins of the leaves. The variant I am making has these leaves in pairs, cascading down the instep of the sock. I like the way this looks in sport-weight wool. But this is still basically a warm, wooly sock, not a fragile lacy thing.
Imagine my surprise when I went to the Big Discount Craft Store, then, to replace a mislaid dpn, only to discover that they had no knitting needles smaller than a 5. It was not that they had sold out of all the smaller sizes, but simply that they do not carry them. I am knitting warm woolies on 2.5s. A 5, for me, is a good heavy sweater needle. What are people using to knit lace? What about light summer things?
I’m going to the LYS tomorrow (they were closed last night) and I am sure they will have what I want. But does this mean that only the serious knitter makes lace any more? That the chunky yarn movement has so thoroughly taken over popular knitting that even socks are now made with 3 stitches to the inch? #2 daughter has an alternative explanation: she thinks that people have become very tight knitters. They are all using 5s for fine yarns because they are so nervous that they get 10 stitches to the inch on 5s. She blames it on the president.