close knit: the neighborhood yarn shop

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Still Hot? Make Socks

As the temps creep up again, so many of us are off to the coast, the mountains, the pool, or just any shady spot we can find.  I know it feels too hot to knit, but there are plenty of little projects that can still satisfy your twitchy fingers in these few precious months of summer.  My suggestion?  Socks.

I am not really a sock knitter.  I don't crank out a pair each month.  I don't love to play around with lace, cables, or crazy Cat Bordhi construction techniques.  My stash only includes a half-dozen or so skeins of pretty sock yarn.  (This is ridiculous to a die-hard sock knitter.)  However, when my toes get cold in November, I sure wish I had spent more of my summer knitting energy on socks.

There are so very many ways to take yarn and needles and make socks: double-pointed needles, magic loop, using two circular needles, even doing two socks at a time!  I am a fan of double-points, but a friend of mine is trying two socks at once on one circular needle.  Mind blowing, and more than a little inspiring.

Photo from Laura.  Thank you!
When I do knit socks, there are a few key things that I like to do.  First, I usually knit toe-up.  My people have large feet, and I'd rather run out of yarn on the cuff than the toe, although I have been know to use a contrasting color for toes and heels in a pinch.

I also lovelovelove the tubular cast on or bind off on the cuff.  I like a nice 1x1 rib at the top of my socks, and it looks so clean and finished.  The added flexibility is also key for me, and it's worth every little bit of extra effort.

Finally, the short row toes and heels.  I tried this long ago on a pair of socks for the husband, and I was sold.  The method I use apparently originated with Priscilla Gibson-Roberts, but the photo tutorial from Alison Hansel is what I use for a reference.

So, even though I don't usually knit socks, there are several on my radar this fall.  It's likely that I'll incorporate some of my favorite techniques into these patterns to make them just right. 

Photo from Star Athena
You know I love stripes, and the Laurelhurst socks really caught my eye.  Stripes and a little bit of lace...just right.

Photo from Interweave
Check out the Happy-Go-Lucky Boot Socks.  The polka dot pattern is created with a cool slip stitch pattern that uses just one color per row.

Photo from Laura Chau
I have been planning some Delicious Knee Socks from Laura Chau for a while.  I have the perfect mustard yellow sock yarn waiting patiently.

Photo from Interweave
Ann Budd's Tyrolean Stockings from and old Interweave look so comfy.  Knit up in Aran weight yarn, I might actually get these done before the rain hits.  Time to cast on for at least one pair this week.  I know it's all sandals and flip-flops right now, but my toes will thank me when it's boot weather again.

1 comment:

  1. I've never made socks before, but these pics are very inspiring! They would all be cozy on a cold Michigan winter day!