The stitch pattern is improvised, beaded rib with beads. I'm making up the sock pattern as I go along, with inspiration from multiple sources. The beaded cast on technique is given in Mrs. Beeton by Brenda Dayne. The combination of beaded rib and beads was inspired by the beaded rib sock in Sensational Knitted Socks by Charlene Schurch and by the Rowan 39 cover sweater, Jinny by Amanda Crawford. I'll probably use a modified version of Charlene's distinctive garter clocks, too. This Valentino bag and Alice Korach's old bead knitting workshop are kicking around somewhere in the mix, too.
The yarn is a favorite, Cherry Tree Hill Supersock Solids in colorway Loden, with some Bead It 10/0 Rnbw Grn beads for a bit of bling. Rnbw Grn beads look somewhat flashy by themselves, but add a delightful bit of brightness once knit in. They sit up nicely on the purl fabric and shouldn't cause any leg irritation. My sock pal doesn't seem to have super sensitive skin, so I'll carry the beaded rib down the instep, leaving the sole plain stockinette – all without beads, of course.
Stringing the beads is slow work and I'm not looking forward to doing it for the second sock. Maybe I have the wrong kind of bead needle? After breaking a couple, I gave up and started using a needle threader to get the beads onto the yarn. It's an awfully tedious process to place a few beads on the threader, place the yarn in the threader eye, slip the beads, remove the yarn, repeat. Not to mention I've broken two threaders. If you know a better way, please do tell.
The false starts involved Sockotta, which I thought perhaps may be more suitable to my sock pal's climate fiber-wise. But I didn't like the way the swatches pooled, in precise checkerboards of turquoise/yellow and red/blue [yawn]. And after a few weeks of blogstalking I see that my pal indeed has/makes/wears wool socks. So that's settled: wool it is.
Every sock oughta see a bit of the world. So far this one has only gone to SnB, but some adventures are ahead!