Thursday, October 05, 2006

Socknitting History

Lolly posted a questionairre so that we Socktoberists might share our personal socknitting histories. It was a nice stroll down memory lane to answer these questions.
  • When did you start making socks? Did you teach yourself or were you taught by a friend or relative? or in a class?
I began knitting socks just a few years ago when I was a new knitter. I taught myself from the booklet Knit a Dozen Socks by Edie Eckman. I made a test sock using the Basic Sock pattern from the book using some pink worsted weight Red Heart. I made the leg and foot short because I was just practicing. I was amazed with the heel turning. It didn’t make sense as I read it, but just followed the directions, and was thrilled that it worked. When it came to work the toe, I got the numbering of the needles wrong. This means that only a twisted foot (and incredibly short, too) would have been able to wear it.
  • What was your first pair? How have they "held up" over time?
My first pair was the Basic Sock from the same book. They were knit from Woolease Sportweight, and they are still alive and kicking.
  • What would you have done differently?
I had transferred the instep stitches on the first sock to waste yarn while turning the heel. As I was still quite new to knitting and didn’t really understand how to read my knitting, I ended up knitting all of those across the top of the foot twisted. As I got further down the foot I knew something was different about those stitches, but only later knew what I had done and how to not repeat such a mistake. I remember wearing the socks for what was probably the first time when we were visiting my husband’s Aunt Beth and Uncle Joe. In true Aunt Beth fashion, she pointed to that row of twisted stitches and asked, “What happened there?” Aunt Beth was a trip. It’s a good thing I had gotten to know her before this incident, or my feelings would have been really hurt.
  • What yarns have you particularly enjoyed?
Cherry Tree Hill is so wonderful, as is Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock.
  • Do you like to crochet your socks? or knit them on DPNs, 2 circulars, or using the Magic Loop method?
Yes, I do have a past as a hooker, but I never crocheted socks, and don’t think I ever will. I began knitting socks using four dpns. I usually knit socks 2-on-1 using the Magic Loop method. This is my preferred method. If I use dpns for socks now, I use five rather than four.
  • Which kind of heel do you prefer? (flap? or short-row?)
I’m a short-row gal. I had tried this type of heel, but after getting Simple Socks Plain and Fancy by Priscilla A. Gibson-Roberts, I was really won over. Sometimes I substitute the short-row heel in place of the flap-type. I did this with Pomatomus.
  • How many pairs have you made?
I can think of at least 17 pairs, not counting all of the baby socks (I prefer making little socks to most all bootie patterns) of which I’ve probably knit a dozen pairs, and then there was also my mini sock phase, although they were never knit in pairs.

Much of my Socktoberfest has been filled with the Sock Wars. Celebrate the kill with me. I've actually killed twice. After much harrassing, I was able to get an address for my original target, Sarahkat. Although she does not appear to be participating in Sock Wars, I still sent the socks to her.
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