Why I Love Socks
A knitted sock cuff on double pointed needles
I love the idea of making socks because they are so practical. No matter what time of year it is, you can always use socks. Socks also let you experiment with color and I love playing with different colored yarns or watching the pattern in a variegated yarn emerge as I complete more and more rows.
I made my first (and so far only) pair of socks last year and was so proud of myself when they were finished, not just because they fit and looked so pretty, but also because they were my first project with double pointed needles. I’d always looked at double pointed needles with a bit of trepidation. It was hard enough keeping stitches on regular needles, but now these? With no ends? And four needles at once??? It was enough to make a person run back to their safe little crochet hook that only holds one stitch at a time.
But you know what? The more I worked with the double pointed needles, and the more I looked at how my sock was progressing like magic from the center of this unfamiliar framework, I started to grow quite fond of the double pointed needles. So much so that after the socks were done, I went looking for more DP projects and made a few hats as well.
I think one of the things that helped me appreciate the usefulness of the double pointed needles was the type of needles I chose to use. Instead of the slippery plastic or metal, which I did try at first and found myself dropping them all over the floor, I went with wood. Soft, silky bamboo. The bamboo needles held my stitches secure and they felt sooooooo good in my hands, I didn’t want to put them down. That’s one sure way to finish a project in record time!
So, why haven’t I made another pair of socks in a whole year? Well, I attribute it to the lonely sock syndrome. The downside of making socks is it’s a pair, which forces you to make one and then another. Usually by the time the first sock is finished you’re itching to work on something new, and the idea of starting up a duplicate of something you just finished makes you walk the other way every time you see your knitting bag. Or maybe it’s just me. I’ve never liked “assembly line crafting.” I tend to be more of a one-of-a-kind creator and quickly move on to another project. So making socks was new to me, and I had to persevere through that second sock so they would be DONE. And like I said, it did help that I fell in love with the bamboo needles and my yarn.
But if you’re like me and dread that second sock, there is another way to make a pair of socks. It’s the two-socks-at-once method that uses two circular needles. Learning this method is on my 2012 knitting to-do list. Wish me luck! If you try it before me (and you probably will), let me know how it works out for you.