Friday I decided I hadn't been knitting enough, and that the things I had been knitting were largely crap (this is, in fact, true; I am a few inches into an enormous aran sweater that I will never ever wear, and have a few feet of a tiny-gauge seed-stitch scarf that I hate more than I can say). So I decided I would do something new and different -- a fair isle baby sweater! I have never steeked, and I'd like to try it out on something small and defenseless.
Anyhow, I knew I had some Dale BabyUll somewhere in the house, so I dove into my under-bed yarn storage facility, and I did indeed find some BabyUll. I also found five pairs of socks in various stages of construction:
- Half a toe-up sock in red Lang Jawoll;
- One-and-a half twining cable socks from a pattern in Knitting on the Road in a pink-and-navy colorway of an unknown yarn;
- One complete plain sock in a dark bluish-greenish Trekking (I could identify this one because the other unused ball still had the label on it);
- A pair of Regia faux-fair-isle socks, one with afterthought heel, one with no heel at all (never got around to the "afterthought" part), both full of mysterious crunchy holes;
- And a pair of loon-patterned socks that need new toes because the old ones have gone a bit holey.
The last sock I started was the toe-up red one, and if I recall correctly I started and quickly abandoned it in fall of 2004, when the Red Sox won the pennant (it was going to be a commemorative sock). So I have not knit socks in about two and a half years. I have not knit socks since I moved to my current apartment (my roommate, also a knitter, was shocked -- "I thought you just didn't like knitting socks," she said when I dragged them all out from under the bed). I have not knit socks since I started my current job. In short, I have not knit socks in a damn long time.
What happened with me and socks? I think it was a combination of a lot of factors. I don't really wear wool socks all that often -- I'm the kind of person who's usually too warm when everyone else is comfortable, plus at work I usually just wear tights in winter (maybe I should knit myself a pair of tights or thigh-highs -- those I might get some use out of). I was also maybe more than a little disheartened by the mysterious holes that developed in the toes of the loon socks, even though they'll be easy enough to fix once I get down to it. And last but not least, I only have one set of 2mm needles, and anything bigger than 2mm is too loose for a sock for me (I like my socks firm and I'm a loose knitter), so I couldn't conveniently work on more than one pair of socks at a time.
What's become of the socks? I ripped out the red half-sock and the dark blue-green sock. They were boring, and I had no interest in finishing them. I threw away the crunchy, holey Regia socks. I don't know what went wrong there, but it's not worth fixing. I'm holding on to the loon socks and I have every intention of re-toe-ifying them in the near future. And the twining cable pink-and-navy socks are my great success story! I ripped back to the beginning of the heel flap so I knew where I was and then I finished them. One of the ankles is a bit floppier than the other one (curiously, since I probably did the ankle of the second sock pretty close to when I did the first sock), but they're pretty and totally wearable (and given that we're having an unseasonably chilly April, I may actually get to wear them for real, and soon).
Hooray for socks!