the sock situation

once upon a time i knitted socks. i was taught to knit socks by some people in canberra and i loved the whole concept of it, little sections that changed quickly, the magic of a turned heel, a little sewing at the toe. lately, i ventured into toe-up construction, and the magic loop method, and was pleased to be learning new things about socks.

then i caught shawl flu. it started with the first aestlight, then another one, then icarus, and estonian designs, and now im contemplating a major shetland project. for me, a side effect of shawl flu has been the loss of sock mojo. it was revived briefly recently with my first shipment from the yarntini self striping club, but even that has stalled, and the lovely diamond ganseys i started when i first got wendy johnsons toe-up book seem, well, kind of blah:

the major problem with this situation is that most of my stash is sock yarn:

i have been collecting it for a while, and there are some real treasures in here, beautiful vibrant colours, yarn of the highest quality, and i have a queue of patterns in my head to go with them. but i cant justify buying anymore until i use up some of what i have. so yesterday, i made a kind of personal sock club. i chose my 6 absolute top favourite yarns from the basket, lettting myself freely take whatever ones i wanted to knit with most:

hmm, anyone see a theme there?! they are, zigzagging from left to right, top to bottom: malabrigo sock in ‘tiziano red’, lornas laces shepherd sock in ‘pilsen’, socks that rock lightweight in ‘kaw kaw’, colinette jitterbug in ‘morello mash’, knitabulous sock in ‘sacred forest’ and patonyle in ‘that good red’.

it doesnt matter that they’re all kind of similiar colours, and mostly luxury yarns to boot, because i can replace all of them, and probably will at the bus depot markets in may and then in bendigo. so it makes sense to use the ones i really want to knit with, and to match them with projects i really want to make. i have matched them with patterns that keep going around in my head, and are best just knitted and not thought about anymore. So the malabrigo becomes ‘rick’, the lornas laces becomes ‘no purl monkeys’, the str becomes ‘hedera‘, (and yes that would be three Cookie A patterns); the jitterbug becomes ‘wasabi peas’, the knitabulous becomes ‘moutain fold’ and the patonyle becomes ‘embossed leaves’.

im getting exhausted just thinking about it. the other thing, these are all for me. i tend to give a lot of socks away, but not these ones. i have bagged them all up and they will be chosen at random:

starting as soon as i have finished at least one pair of the ones i have on the needles now. however, there is one proviso. i do like to give socks away, and i do so love the yarntini self striping, so the plan is to intersperse all that red with some more earthy colours:

self striping just gets knitted plain, so these will all be done toe up and magic loop for car/travel knitting. thats another thing thats changed about my sock knitting. i used to swear by DPNs and cuff down, and while there are some things i dont like about toe up (for example, i am never doing another short row heel, ever, and how do i make the cast offs not so tight?!), but in terms of ease and convenience, magic loop has a lot to recommend it. is this some kind of knitting heresy, do you think? (i can feel Cookie A scowling at me now).

at any rate, i am slightly more in control of the sock situation today. what about you?Β  are you running your own sock club? or did shawl flu get you too?

k xx


About DrK

researcher, knitter, dog lover View all posts by DrK

18 responses to “the sock situation

  • justthreadtwiddling

    What beautiful yarns. I, too, have a large stash of sock yarns. Since most are washable I am using a lot of it for baby clothes. But I also have the shawl flu, especially since I enjoyed Stephanie Japel’s “Design your own Shawl” class. So my stash of laceweight is larger. I also plan on a featherwieght for myself. Now if there were only 48 hours in a day.

  • shellauw

    Well, I’ve got the cardi on the race, but I’m itching to get back to some plain vanilla socks. I even caked up my count sockular yesterday. Maybe in two weeks I can enjoy some sock knitting again….

  • jp

    Loving the Yarntini self-striping gorgeous colours.
    Must reinvigorate my sock knitting too

  • sue

    Your personal sock club looks as though you love reds at the moment, but the next selection are just as lovely. I think I should just knit self striping yarn into plain socks too as I can never really see the pattern if I do one with them. I hope your sock mojo returns so you can finish some of them before Bendigo!

  • gidgetknits

    Love the colours! I’m now itching for some fair isle sock knitting… I have seen owl sock patterns…

  • missfee

    I am hopelessly addicted to socks and now always have some on the needles.
    As I come to the end of a pair of socks my brain is plotting the next pair.

    I love socks and beware a visit from me as your yarn stash looks most inviting…..

  • bellsknits

    this is a post I could have written. Do you know the last time I did a pair of patterned socks? August last year! It’s been two pairs, no three pairs, of plain since then and that’s it.

    I love your choices. Some of those are on my list too. Nice kick off to your own club!

  • 2paw

    Are you sure you’re not RoseRed????!! Lovely sock wool I have a big stash too, though mine is green of course. I must knit cardigans this year, cardi, cardi cardis!! It is nice to know you can replace your wool and I did like clicking through to see all the patterns!! Which will be first?

  • Rose Red

    Yes, are you sure that isn’t MY personal sock club!! Tee hee! Great colours, great yarns, great pattern choices!

    I like the sewn bind off for toe up socks, but will give the tubular bind off another go, and also “Jeny’s surprisingly stretchy cast off” which is supposed to be great. But toe up magic loop rocks! Not heresy at all!

    • drkknits

      i did laugh out loud when i saw them all there and i got a flash of a certain plate on a certain coffee table, but i cant help it, they’re just the ones that speak to me right now!

  • 1funkyknitwit

    I have the yarn, books and blockers but I’m yet to start the socks. I too have the shawl flu which you may as well add all accessories to that if I really must confess πŸ˜‰ ~ BUT I really do want to start my first socks & for me it’s just idea of picking ‘A’ pattern to start with??… too many choices!

    I love your yarn choices & I shall be looking forward to seeing them completed… maybe I need to make a start myself πŸ™‚

  • Ailsa

    I wish I liked knitting socks, but it just doesn’t do it for me.

    It’s the complete proof of how much a process knitter I am. I LOVE and knitted socks. I am wearing some right now. But knitting them? Not so much fun for me.

    I love knitting cardigans and shawls. But do I wear them? Not on your nelly. They get a single outing, tops.

    Your personal sock club looks gorgeous – am very flattered that Sacred Forest made the shortlist too.

    Camp = 5 nights from today..

  • Giselle

    I have three sock patterns (and yarns) that I am desperate to cast on. On one, I can’t get gauge (so I ordered more needles), the other two: I’ll need a lot of time to make sense of the instructions (it’s one of those books where you need to go from one post-it marked page to another to try and understand what the author is talking about) – I think I’ll add a fourth pattern: completely plain basic socks, but probably in that lovely Colinette Jitterbug! In Cherry!

  • Sarah

    If I were you I’d use the sock yarn for shawls if that was what I really fancied knitting – stll I think the excitement of your own personal club should help you along

  • Leonie

    Ah sock clubs. That would be a wonderful thing to have but I am woefully short on sock yarn. Might have to rectify that at Bendi. Sock knitting has been my go to for watching swimming lessons for the last 6 months and it has been fun.

    I like your diamond ones lots!

    Magic loop has been a lifesaver a few times in this house when children have decided to “help” mummy and pull the needles out of the knitting. Started using dpns but for ease of travel and safety around children magic loop has become a way of life, of course I had no idea it had a name when I first did it, it just seemed to make sense at the time, it took about 6 months before I knew using a circular needle in that manner had a name!

    Can’t wait to see what your personal sock club brings you first.

  • GeekKnitter

    I loathe short-row heels too. Can’t ever seem to get the holes to disappear.

    I’m a great fan EZ’s sewn bind-off. It positively EATS yarn, but it’s nice and stretchy.

  • Tam

    I love the ‘DIY sock club’ idea. I read about YarnHarlot’s one recently, and I’ve got my sock yarn ready to go, at the start of next year. I have things to finish, and other plans for this year πŸ˜€

    I like Fleegle’s toe up gusset heel and EZ’s sewn bind off. Also using a circular caston instead of Judy’s Magic cast on, because I can’t seem to get the edges of JMCO right Ü

    You’ll have to have a group photo of the Red Sox πŸ˜‰ when they’re all done!

  • Anna

    Your stash is drool-worthy. I need to actually finish something before I can really justify expanding the stash too much more, but oh, my, it’s tempting!!

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