Mary-Heather Cogar is not only an outstanding model but a wonderful designer too. Last year, she designed a soft, feminine and flattering Promenade pullover, and she followed that up with this season's Avivah socks. In this post, Mary-Heather describes her designing process. This is a cross post from her own blog.
I'm in a rare phase in my crafting where I have no pressing deadlines for secret projects and am actually in the mood to finish up a few works-in-progress. Since I'm about to cast off my current portable project, though (more on that soon!) I brought out this pretty Miss Babs Windsor to start a pair of Avivah socks (my pattern from the Spring 2011 Twist Collective) for myself:
I love that color! Since I don't have progress pics yet, I thought this would be the perfect better-late-than-never time to blog about my Avivah pattern.
I submitted for Twist with a desire to make a sock pattern that would have a very spring-like, sweet look and feel. I knew that I wanted the main focus of the sock to be a single motif up the entire foot and front of the sock, so I swatched and charted until I'd created a trellis of twisted stitches which framed climbing eyelet rosettes. This stitch pattern could be carried on longer if desired; there are separate charts for the neatly closing toe and cuff parts of the trellis. The socks are worked from the toe up, and have a short-row toe and a tidy gusset heel.
It was also important to me that this motif neatly-but-organically flowed into the deeply ribbed cuff, but as this design is garden-inspired (and my favorite gardens always have a bit of a wild look about them, at least in places), there are some rosettes on the back of the leg, as well - rambling roses, bursting forth from the contained garden trellis.
The yarn I used for the Twist sample socks is Miss Babs Windsor - a beautiful, squishy soft, handpainted semisolid blend of 80/20 superwash merino and nylon. I always love to fondle the beautiful range of semisolid colors that Miss Babs creates when I see her booth at fiber festivals, so getting to work with the yarn for Twist was exciting - there were so many gorgeous colors from which to choose! The Twist socks are worked in the Sugar colorway, which is a lovely pale pink that is perfectly but not overly sweet.
The name was the last thing to come for this pattern - until a few days before the issue went live, we were working with another pattern name that means "rose garden." Unfortunately, the name was a touch too similar to another recent Twist Collective pattern name, so we started brainstorming other names that evoked springtime and gardens and flowers. Avivah is a beautiful Hebrew name that means Springtime, and I happened to work with a woman named Avivah once - she was smart, and bubbly, and so sweet and fun, so my associations with the name are really good. I thought the name would be perfect for these socks, and thankfully Kate Gilbert agreed!
It is always so fun to see projects pop up for my designs on Ravelry, and the biggest advantage to my delayed blog post about this design is that there are a few more finished Avivah socks to admire through Ravelry projects!
All the photos in this post except for the first one are copyright Jamie Dixon - she did the photoshoot for Twist Collective right here in Albuquerque. :) Marnie blogged about the shoot and the trip that she and Kate took to New Mexico; it was so great to see them here - maybe Jamie and I should try to convince them to come out to the 'burque again soon! (I'm not sure that our 100-degree temps are much of a draw right now, but hey, no humidity!)
Twist Collective is consistently full of thoughtful, beautiful designs, and I was so honored to once again be a part of this publication!