Knitting: Christmas Man Socks

At some point last year I realized Christmas would be infinitely better with hand knitted socks on the mantel, rather than some bright and annual oversized stocking that carried little meaning. I've always felt a little love goes a long way when tucked into the process of creation and given to someone special., and in the holiday season I find most of my happiness is directly tied to the happiness of others, it's the joy of gift giving, the fun of making treats, the pleasure of eating a delicious duck and potatoes roasted in its fat (arteries so clogged now, help me).

And so the chance arrived when I stayed in Seattle for the holidays this year and let go of tradition a bit.

These socks knitted up so quickly that I felt inspired to just keep knitting, more and more and more. Turns out I love knitting socks with sport-weight yarn because it moves infinitely faster than typical sock yarn-- the first sock was finished in 2 days!

Cascade 220 sport, 1.75 skeins of yarn, knitted on size 2.5 needles I think and used the pattern for adult size medium, 6 stitches per inch sock in the book Getting Started Knitting Socks (Getting Started series).

You see, the last time I made socks for this man they were specified to his exact foot measurements and I thought that would just be fine, a custom-fit sock that would wear well. Sadly, it seems a little on the large side, so what gives? Firstly, those socks were made of superwash wool which actually tends to droop and lose shape a bit because of the way wool is processed (typically a chemical process strips the wool fibers of their scales/grabby surface which thus inhibits the felting process-- no scales, no tight woolly masses of fiber). Secondly, who wants socks that fit on their foot perfectly being just the same size? Nobody! We like our socks tight, wrapping our feet in warmth and staying in place. We don't want slouching socks sliding into our shoes throughout the day, or a loose knitted fabric rubbing against our heels and inevitably giving us blisters. This is a logical thought that I stumbled across while browsing at a bookstore, in this lovely tome: The Knitter's Book of Socks: The Yarn Lover's Ultimate Guide to Creating Socks That Fit Well, Feel Great, and Last a Lifetime. It might be my new sock bible.

PS. Pardon my low-quality pictures for next little while. I seem to have lost my little camera and need some time to potentially stumble across it before I go out and buy a new one. Sigh. I searched everywhere and no luck.


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