October 3, 2006
For Socktoberfest, Lolly has asked some questions. I'm answering them here because I'd like to include some pictures. I added a few other questions in there too.
* When did you start making socks? Did you teach yourself or were you taught by a friend or relative? or in a class? I started making socks in September of 2005. I was self taught by various tutorials on the web. I wasn't very happy with the crocheted socks, so I re-taught myself how to knit. I do have the Crocheted Socks! book and the Sensational Knitted Socks book. I bought those after making my first socks.
* What was your first pair? How have they "held up" over time? This is a picture of my first knitted pair of socks. I did these on dpns and they're made from Regia Strato yarn. The crocheted pair was made out of Knitpicks palette and developed holes pretty quick. This knitted pair is still going strong.
* What would you have done differently? I would have cast on less. These socks are loose.
* What yarns have you particularly enjoyed? Out of the yarns that I've tried, I like Fleece Artist and Cherry Tree Hill for their springy-ness. I like Opal for their colors and durability. I like Knitpicks Parade for their quick-to-knit sport weight and durability. I also like Regia for their price and durability.
* Do you like to crochet your socks? or knit them on DPNs, 2 circulars, or using the Magic Loop method? I've tried crochet, but didn't like it. I found the bumps uncomfortable. My favorite knit method is two at once toe-up on one circular. I prefer to use 2 circulars for fair isle. I like using dpns, but the circulars make the socks more portable and the needles are less likely to fall out of the socks.
* What kind of cast-on do you prefer? I love the turkish cast-on. It's possible to get perfectly identical socks if you make the slip knot in the same place for both socks.
* Which kind of heel do you prefer? (flap? or short-row?) I prefer a short row heel. I've never been fond of the look of a flap heel.
* How many pairs have you made? I have made 23 pairs total, but not all of those were for me.
My usual "method" is a turkish cast-on using 12 wraps around the needles. I increase 4 stitches on every row until there are 20 stitches on each needle. Then I increase 4 stitches on every other row until I get to whatever number I need for the sock pattern--usually 32 or 36. This gives me a more rounded and less pointy toe. The short row heels are done down to 12 stitches before picking it all back up again. I usually knit until the sock leg is as long as the sock foot and then add some ribbing at the top.
Sock knitting has been a lot of fun for me. With two kids around, it's hard to start a longer knitting project and keep it going. I will mostly like be making socks for a while. I love that there are so many variations--plain, cabled, lace, fair isle, etc. There are so many different yarns. I would like to try argyles, but I'm not sure that's going to happen during this Socktoberfest. There are too many other things on the to knit list.