I’ve rediscovered the joy of knitting socks…hooray!
I don’t know why I stopped, but I started again over the Christmas holiday when the seasonal cold germ dropped in, uninvited, and ground everything else to a halt.
I was rummaging pathetically around in the studio looking for something to do which required no flash of inspiration, no tracking down of supplies, no complicated instructions to follow and there in a little bag I found…the yarn…the pattern…the needles…and one completed sock just waiting for it’s mate to be knitted up – perfect!
I’m embarrassed to say that just now whilst looking through the archives to find past sock adventures I discovered when I made the first one of the pair…2011! We were taking Aimee to Uni when I made the first sock and in the time it’s taken for me not to finish the second one she’s graduated and is well on the way to being a qualified teacher! Oh dear…
Anyway, not only has this lone sock been matched with it pair, but I whizzed out for more yarn when I was feeling better and I’ve just completed a second pair. To add to the mix my friend Kit arrived with a little cheer up bag containing…pink and green socks, so I’m well on the way to replacing all the ones which have succumbed over the years to the four legged sausage shaped ‘moth’ which makes holes in soft furnishing and garments willy nilly.
So what’s so good about knitting socks?
Well, the little pattern I use is probably the most basic one you can find, it came free with a ball of sock yarn a while ago. And when you’ve used it a few times it sort of lodges in your head, and you can trundle away, following the plot of Broadchurch or The Killing (with subtitles) without getting flustered.
It’s a bit fiddly to start off with, casting on 60 stitches and dividing them between three DP needles and getting that first rib row set up, but then you are off. Once the rib is done you’ve got rows and rows of straight knitting, and because you are in the round, every row is a knit row and you still get stocking stitch!
I like to use the self striping sock yarn because seeing what colour is coming next gives you something to aim for, ‘I’ll just finish the blue, or the pink, or the green’…
Turning the heel is an event, (you should have seen the first one I ever did!) but once you see the logic of where you are going it’s a little challenge in the middle of the project to keep you on your toes. and then you are off again, round and round until the toe arrives, a simple little decrease which makes an elegant seam each side.
And then…the wonder that is Kitchener Stitch! It’s a fabby way to end your sock, weaving in and out of the stitches with your needle to make new knitting stitches so you can’t see the join. It took me ages to get to grips with it so don’t shudder and turn away at this point, it can be done, believe me. I can be heard muttering ‘Front – Purl off, Knit. Back – Knit off, Purl’ a little mantra to keep me on the straight and narrow.
And then, when you’ve finished, and tenderly pressed them (about the only time I like to get the ironing board out!) you’ve got something warm and delightful to enjoy yourself or to give as a very special present. What a joy!
If you feel like joining in with a little relaxing sock knitting therapy one of my favourite online ports of call is The Sock Yarn Shop, where the most difficult thing is choosing! This what I’m hankering after at the moment…
Are you a sock knitting fan, or have I inspired you to have a go? I do hope so… If you are looking for some help, the Sock Yarn Shop recommends this set of tutorials.
I’ll be back soon with Happy Friday. I’m going to try and get it posted on Thursday evening to give more people a chance to join in so look out your happy photos or jolly moments and get ready to link up…see you soon…x