TdF designing

I've been hard at work on mental designing* over the past year or so. Lots of socks. Some mitts. A lovely square neck pullover. But the actual putting down on paper and in yarn of my mental ideas has been somewhat lacking, since there are only so many hours in the day, and so many patterns out there already (damn Ravelry!). But there's an idea that's been stuck in my head for over a year now that I think is ready to come to frutition, and I'm going to share that process (partly because it helps me figure out what I'm doing and gives me some pressure to make progress, and partly because I have no pictures to show you today).

Four years ago in May, I was somewhat frazzled, extremely underwhelmed with parenthood, and stuck at home on maternity leave. We don't typically watch a lot of TV, but we broke down and got cable, in part so I could watch the Giro d'Italia at home. And then the Tour de France. And then the Vuelta in September, with ample exposure to Phil and Paul during the classics, the Tour of Georgia, etc. It was a cycling-filled few months, and repeated for the next few years until OLN dropped off of basic cable and then switched it's name. That was about the same time that Lance retired and they stopped really televising any cycling in the States.

The current design project is four pairs of cycling socks in honor of the Tour de France. One for each of the main jerseys (Maillot Jaune, King of the Mountains, the Points Jersey) and one for the Lanterne Rouge, who doesn't get a jersey, but probably should, just for sheer persistance. I've been charting out patterns and playing with swatches for a couple of weeks now, and yesterday I fell down and ordered a cubic buttload of Cascade Fixation to do the actual knitting of said socks. I'm hoping to get the patterns done and available by the Prologue, which gives me not very much time**. Five months may seem like a gracious plenty, but this is four pairs of socks to chart, test knit, and write up. Yikes! Not to mention another pattern I want to knit/write up for submission in June, and a pattern already written that I absolutely need to get up on Ravelry this weekend.

Anyone out there want to do some test knitting? Bonus points if your feet are small (6-7) or medium (8-9) as opposed to my large (size 10) clodhoppers. I'll provide pattern and yarn, you knit them and let me know where my arithmatic skills deserted me. Leave me a comment or shoot an email to porpoiseknitsATgmailDOTcom if you're interested. These will be ankle socks, so factor that in to your knitting time estimates, but the first pattern won't be ready for at least a month.

Now everyone be quiet while I go fight with Excel. Your cooperation is greatly appreciated.

* For instance, last night I paused my episode of Alias so I could make a sketch of the cabled turtleneck sweater Sydney was wearing, with the absolute goal of writting up a pattern for it. It was gorgeous.
** Appropriately enough for Lance's return, Le Tour starts on July 4th***.
*** And, given that we're going to be in the UK, we seriously might get to go see some of it. Squee!