Last Thursday I was at Anna's place, knitting on the foot of my (toe up) Pentre Ifran sock. Grace, Anna's six year old daughter, asked me what I was going to put in it. I told her "a foot",a nd explained that this sock starts from the toe. "Oh" she said, looking doubtful and wrinkling her little nose, "is that the right way to do it?". And my answer is "probably not". I'm knitting this sock because it's beautiful. Yes, it's toe up, but I don't want to be bound to one method of knititng socks. The Sherman heel and toe, which are Brenda Dayne's method of choice… lets just say I don't like them. I had to completely reknit the toe twice, and it's still not smooth or nice. I took more care over the heel, but it was hard going, and then transitioning to the heel patterning seemed like a great deal of effort. Also, I hate that Jenny's Surprisingly Stretchy Cast Off is also Jenny's surprisingly wavy-edged cast off.
This is not a reflection on Brenda Dayne or her pattern writing. I looked up other instructions, and found them impenetrable. The details on the pattern are exquisite, particularly the way the pattern and the ribbing intersect.
So, what to do? I'm going to reverse the chart and knit the second sock top down. This way I can have the wonderful Pentre Ifran sock, without the agony of knitting it toe up.