The meticulously written pattern made perfect sense, even in my bleary state, and the designer's video tutorial was very helpful working the double helix heel. Although I own a ridiculous number of yarn bobbins, I couldn't find any, so I used mini clothespins to tame the four ends of
There's a lot of needles in play because I couldn't bring myself to provisionally bind off per the pattern.
The heel initially made me think of festive peppermints and spiral cookies, but delirious run-on thoughts about Heelix the Cat in the Hat kept intruding. Also nautical and Where's Waldo? musings. That was unexpected, although perhaps it shouldn't have been – the construction technique possesses a certain jaunty Seussian magic.
The double helix heel is very firm and small – significantly smaller than a standard short-row heel or an afterthought heel – so potentially a problematic fit on my Frankenfeet. As written the finished sock would be too tight at the heel and too baggy at the ankle for me. I used stebo79's brilliant modification: added a vestigial heel flap to the top of the heel, then provisionally cast on for a standard leg worked upwards and for a standard gusset and foot worked downwards to give my sock sufficient heel depth without excessive ankle ease. This hybrid approach could be used with a short-row heel, too... oh, the possibilities! Why didn't I encounter this sooner?
Initially I planned to knit the leg and foot in solid black, but at some point I started worrying about Not Enough Yarn, so I frogged back and added a hand-dyed charcoal. I tried wide stripe and skinny helix stripe schemes before settling on a 2-row stripe (with jogs) to sorta echo the double helix heel. At the cuff I tried another Jeny Staiman unvention, Jeny's Surprisingly Stretchy Bind Off, which uses two or three times more yarn than some BOs, evidence of its greater stretchiness. I like the way it allows the ribbing to ruffle, too.
Amid these happy knitting discoveries, I made an important tummy discovery. Lactose is not my friend when I'm not feeling well, so I avoid drinking milk. I now know that certain purportedly healthful and restorative concoctions (including some popular with cyclists) made with whey are 'way worse. Whey 'way worse. I'll spare gentle readers the details.