06 October 2006

Socktoberfest Week One: A Sock-Knitting Memory

I had been knitting for years and years before I ever got around to knitting a sock. I'm not sure why -- I guess I simply wasn't interested in socks until recently.

But eventually the sock-knitting bug bit, and I decided to try a pair. I got some Wool-Ease in worsted weight for the adventure:

It's an off-white, with little strands of grey in it. I thought it looked like a sheep's fleece. Oh, these socks were destined to be cozy and wonderful!

I knit them up while watching My Big Fat Greek Wedding on DVD. I used a very basic pattern, mostly stockinette.

I tried them on. Egads, they gave the impression that they weren't socks at all -- instead, it looked as though I had fat ankles covered with pasty skin and lots of unshaven leg hair (those little strand of grey). Okay, my skin really is pasty, and my legs typically unshaven (although the hair isn't quite that dark), but my ankles most certainly aren't that fat!

As it happened, the socks soon developed a wicked hole in them. I discarded them, and assumed that the hole was a funtion of Wool-Ease not making good socks. No more Wool-Ease for me!

But, alas, it was many a skein of sock yarn before I realized that the yarn I liked to purchase to make socks often bore no resemblance to the yarn I liked to have in the socks I wear. There were some winners in there (notably Cascade Fixation), but there were also a distressing amount of losers. I have most of the skeins still hanging around, hoping to re-purpose them for something else. (I'm not quite sure what -- they'd make great Barbie pullovers and cardigans, although at this point I have enough yarn to knit sweaters for every Barbie in the metro area.)

I finally discovered that I really did like the yarns everyone raved about, like Lorna's Laces and Regia. This should have made for many happy pairs of socks flying off my needles. But, alas, I also realized that the sock patterns I liked to knit often bore no resemblance to the type of sock I like to wear. I like to knit lacey, interesting patterns. I find wearing fussy socks with little holes all over them really really annoying. Sigh. At this point I had amassed quite a collection of sock patterns in books an magazine, most of which were for socks it would drive me nuts to wear.

It would be great if I figured out how to make gift socks, but the whole sizing issue paralyzes me. I feel like I need to make plaster casts of the recipients feet to I can constantly try the socks on the model. It's a performance-anxiety thing.

The road to sock-knitting has been a rocky one for me. But, aha, if my kids should decide to take up sock knitting I have plenty of yarn and patterns for them to forage!

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