I have never knitted socks. Many of the bloggers I read knit beautiful socks seemingly every month, whipping them off their needles like hotcakes off a griddle. They've always seemed to me, along with sweaters, like one of those things that 'real knitters' do. For them socks serve the purpose of being both practical and fast projects, and to be honest probably also a great excuse to buy that gorgeous skein of sock yarn. Hmm. Can't be all that bad can it? Thus I decided to attempt to add this knitterly skill to my repertoire.
Well here's my first sock! I finished this a couple days after Christmas and am a few inches into the second one. I'm determined to avoid the dreaded second sock syndrome and get these done by the end of the month. I may still go back and modify the toe decreases (again) but then again I may not. Hehe did you hear that? I'm already talking like a sock pro. 'Modify the toe decreases' indeed.
I am certainly learning from this experience. The phrase 'turning the heel' has held a special kind of mystery for me, but now that I've done it the concept has gone from mystery to magic. It's a triumph when a few rows into the gusset you realize "holy cow, it's actually starting to look like.... a sock!" Also, socks are one of those things we take for granted that just fit. We buy socks at the store without needing to think about size in the same way as we painstakingly try on jeans or sweaters. Turns out, there's some finesse to fitting hand knit socks that I did not appreciate such as: "don't make the cast on too tight or you'll never get it on" and "knit as many rows as you need before the toe decreases". Apparently some people just know how many rows they need for their feet. I had to keep trying mine on as I went.
I started simple with a free Ravelry pattern called 'Hermione's Everyday Socks' mainly because it seemed clearly written but also because, let's be honest, if anyone could get me through a sock knitting experience it's Hermione Grainger. The texture pattern is simple enough that the variegated yarn I'm using doesn't compete with it and it's easy to memorize. Of course, I referred to the pattern religiously through the heel and gusset sections, but overall a pretty simple knit. Maybe this sock thing isn't so complicated after all!