knitrospective – socks

For this knitrospective I wanted to look at my journey in sock knitting.

When I first started getting serious about knitting I read quite a lot of blogs, I did not (and still don’t) have a knit group so everything I learned was what I found out for myself online.

My current “vanilla socks”

I really didn’t have any fear when it came to trying new things or starting a different kind of project, after all it is just yarn and the worst that can happen is that you rip it out and start again. I did that back then and I still do it now. I have even put terror into a group of people at work, when while knitting at lunchtime I decided that the socks I was working on were not right, so I just pulled out the needles and ripped. Why continue if you know it’s not right.

Quite early on I decided that I wanted to knit socks, because it seemed like the thing to do and the idea of hand knit socks really excited me. Everywhere I was reading about “plain vanilla” socks and I thought that this was some magical universal pattern, a secret amongst knitters. I searched the internet, looking for the plain vanilla sock pattern, but nothing had that name. So I found a pattern that sounded simple enough and gave it a go. Only after knitting those socks and more internet research did I actually find out what plain vanilla meant, and that for each person these can end up being completely different. I now have my plain vanilla’s – 56sts, 2.75mm magic loop or 2 circs, toe-up, short row heel (knit from the other end of the ball if I don’t want to break up the striping pattern), short cuff.

But it does take a while to get to that point with socks, discovering the preferences of the toe shape, cuff length, heel shaping is all very personal and only becomes right with trial and error. I also like to explore new techniques and heels to see if there might be another way I would prefer.

Below are my very first pair of socks. They are pilled, have a hole in the cuff and are not even the same size. But I love them and I use them as bed socks. I don’t know what pattern they are knit from (done before Ravelry), I know I knit them on double points, but I clearly had inconsistent gauge, maybe even different stitch counts and didn’t understand that I needed to alter the stitch count in order to get socks that fit.

I have since knit eleven pairs of socks that I have listed in Ravelry. And I think at least another four pairs that were knit prior to Rav and gifted. I would not call myself a pro sock knitter, but I do like to always have a pair on the needles and will continue to add to my sock drawer.

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