Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Socks, finally


This is the first pair of socks I’ve finished in well over a year.  That’s hard for me to imagine, given that some years I’ve made twenty-five pairs.  I guess I ran out of steam for making socks when they wouldn’t all fit in the drawer, but now they’re all starting to wear out at once, so I determined to finish these.  I’m not sure what to wear with this color, but that’s not really the point, right?   The label from this yarn has been lost so long it might have been written in Aramaic, but I’m pretty sure it’s Harmony sock yarn from the Woolen Rabbit in the colorway “Iris”.  That color is no longer available, but a whole tempting lot of other new colorways are, so I don’t dare linger there.


I love having a brand new pair of socks—there’s nothing like that feeling when you come indoors, chilled through on a rainy day, and put on your warm, clean socks.  That’s the best feeling ever, so cozy.  Handknit socks are the very coziest, in any season.


I have sock knitting pretty well figured out by now, so I don’t use a pattern anymore.  I just choose a needle size based on what the yarn seems to require, cast on 60 stitches (almost always, although if the yarn is on the thick side, I might use 56) work an inch or two of some kind of ribbing, work rounds of stockinette until it seems long enough, make a heel flap, turn the heel, decrease for the gusset until I’m back to 60 stitches, work rounds of stockinette until it fits my foot (and I’m not shy about trying it on, no matter where I am, to see if it fits) then work the toe, kitchener the remaining 24 stitches, weave in the ends. 

Knowing all this about making socks without having to follow a pattern means I can go off and do whatever I want, stitch pattern-wise (compensating for stitches that stretch or pull in) and I’ll still get something that looks like a sock in the end.   But I almost never do that—I like plain socks the best.  Those plain rounds of stockinette are so comfortable to knit, mmmm.  I love it. 

It feels good to get that done.  Onward!