They are not perfect, but they fit, and today I finished sock number two. That gives me my first finished pair of hand-knit socks.
Many years ago, when I lived in New Hampshire, I took knitting lessons from a lady named Anne, of The Wool Room. I can’t find any recent info about the shop, and Anne was up in years way back then. Tiny, local shops in New England work more by word-of-mouth than website. But my time living in that area gave me great insight into hand-crafting and becoming self-sufficient.
My lessons were about making hats. My first attempts at knitting hats were sloppy and a bit crazy, but it was fun. My neighbor took lessons with me, and she decided to knit socks for her husband. I often wonder how many pair she has made since then.
Personally, I never had the desire to knit socks. Until recently. They seemed too difficult to make, and then to wear them on your feet where no one really notices… why? I couldn’t figure out what all the sock-knitting fuss was about.
My mind is changed. I want to branch out and make clothing which is useful rather than the typical cowls and scarves I’ve been making for years. Plus, how many scarves does a person need?
Suddenly I was ready to try making socks. But I needed an easy pattern to follow. After searching online, and eventually trying one free pattern that didn’t work out, I picked up my Knitting for Dummies book. I hadn’t flipped through it’s pages in years. I wondered if it had any sock knitting information. Oh yes, it did. I chose some Madeline Tosh Vintage yarn (Rocky Mountain High is the color) from my stash and cast onto my DPNs.
Although the socks are called “basic”, I still had some trouble. Eventually, thanks to YouTube, I got through my first sock. Wow…I was thrilled.
Because I’d had trouble with another pattern once I got to the gusset area, I chose to make my Basic Socks with a short rib section just in case I ended up having to rip it all out. Since I seldom wear socks at all here in Florida, these will be more like slippers for me.
The gusset part of the pattern that called for me to “pick up stitches” got confusing. Suddenly I had no empty needles to use! Something was wrong. I went to YouTube and watched an experienced knitter explain this part of basic sock-knitting. Her “pattern” is not exactly like the one I followed, but I got the general idea of what I was supposed to do.
Once all the stitches were on my 4 needles, I shaped the gusset, which decreases stitches to the correct size for the foot section. For this you need to know how to SSK (slip, slip, knit) and K2tog (knit two stitches together).
I will never wear these socks with shoes as they are a bit thick. I did wash them in the machine, to see how they held up. They came out fine, but a bit fuzzy, so I will hand wash from now on. It’s a good idea to hand-wash fine knits no matter what.
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