Pattern: Spiral Boot Socks by Veronik Avery, IK Summer 2007
Yarn: Toxic superwash corriedale, 3 ply, approximately fingering weight, dyed by Hello Yarn (more details on the spinning are here), 515 yds.
Needles: multiple sizes -- US 1/2.25 mm and US 2/2.75 mm dpns from Brittany, US 1.5/2.5 mm dpns from Knit Picks
Started/finished (this is why I love Ravelry!): 3/12 on my way to Portland/4/14/08.
Comments and modifications: Where to start? I spun this yarn hoping to end up with some subtle striping, and it worked out better then I ever imagined once the yarn was knitted up. I knew from the beginning I'd need to do a bunch of modifications since 1) I wanted to knit the socks toe-up so I could use all of the yarn and 2) the pattern schematics indicated a top leg opening of only 11 inches. Since I spent the better part of three days this winter trying to find a pair of knee high boots that would close around my "shapely" calves (18 inches!), 11 inches was not going to cut it.
My gauge with this yarn on US 1/2.25 mm needles was about 7 sts/9 rows per inch so I did my standard toe increases up to the number of stitches called for in the pattern and tried it on. Everything looked good, so I forged ahead. I simply worked the charts as they are printed in the pattern for the length of the foot. When I had about 6.5 inches of foot done, I started increasing one stitch on each side of the heel stitches every other row for the gusset. Once those were done (14 increases total) I turned the heel as in the pattern directions and then worked the heel flap in sl1/k1 rib just as I did for the Firestarter socks.
Once the heel was done, I started working the leg patttern with US 1/2.25 mm needles. I did 15 repeats before increasing one stitch before the YO. 15 more repeats and then increased one stitch after the YO. Note: this is not what was called for in the pattern, but I didn't read closely enough to catch the mistake until I was almost at the top of the leg. So I didn't bother fixing it. This increase in stitch number as you go up the leg creates subtle calf shaping that works pretty well.