Sometime early last year I came across a post on Instagram where someone had shared a picture of their newly completed socks using the Winwick Mum sockalong pattern.
Now sock knitting had been in the back of my mind for quite a considerable amount of time, although something I had not really researched how to get going. Out of curiosity I hopped on over to the Winwick Mum Sockalong Facebook group and stalked all the gorgeous makes and took on board the support and advise offered on a daily basis for quite a long period of time.
Then September last year the time had come to…………. take on the sock challenge!!
My youngest baby had started school and I needed a new challenge to keep my mind busy. I had, had 10 years of having company at home on a daily basis and this was going to be a big shock to the system!
So armed with some Hiya Hiya 2.5mm 9inch circular needles (how funny mixing metric and imperial measurements) and some Stylecraft Head over Heels sock yarn and my adventures began.
I headed on over to the Winwick Sockalong area of the website which gives you a step by step guide on how to construct socks. I started my gauge swatch and I was off. Now these socks were no speedy knit. I started my socks on the 1st September 2017 and it took me until the 8th December 2017 to finish (aided by me having to put my feet up following my trip down the stairs I mentioned here) Since they have been finished though they have been keeping my toes super cosy and I even had to purchase a new pair of shoes to show them off!
I then started on my second pair using the Pink Flamingo sock yarn from West Yorkshire Spinners. My first ‘sock’ was completed in a lot quicker time. 30 days to be exact! I felt like a knitting queen!! Then I got struck by Second sock syndrome which is very common in the sock making world! To this day (14th April) I still only have one sock in this colourway but it will be the next thing to be cast on I promise!
Now what I can say is, it was not because I could not be bothered, no it was not. The reason behind my SSS (second sock syndrome) was because I had shown my first pair to my lovely Grandad and he declared there and then he needed a pair for his Birthday in February. I was super chuffed that he had asked me. I always like to make people gifts as it gives me a reason to buy yarn or fabric and not feel guilty about it.
Construction of a sock to me is a great combination between mindless knitting and needing to knuckle down and concentrate.
knitting the rib, leg section and the main foot part are just spirals of knitting joy. Just remember to keep a note of those rounds! I have a little spiral notebook which is keeping my sock making details nicely so I can get a second pair that (almost) matches. The pattern also has a slip stitch heel flap which I just love how it looks! I am constantly amazed with each new thing I learn about knitting and the different stitches you can create, the satisfaction of turning the heel and the fact that with each new sock I produce it looks even better than the last gives me a super warm fuzzy feeling . Practice really does make, hmmmm can I say perfect? We all make mistakes but you know what I mean right!?
Now let’s talk about the decreases required. I love the sleek diagonal line you get from gusset and toe decreases but I can not do it with anyone around. This is the whole reason my sock knitting gets delayed as I have to lock myself away in the Crusic Room and I can not have a single distraction. No children in the house, no podcasts on, Oh I love the Very Pink Podcast by the way! and no husband walking in to play his beloved Vinyl collection. I need complete and utter silence. I just like to add this is the only time I don’t want my husband around I love the fact we have a little work/hobby space we can share.
Kitchener stitch, which is the term used for grafting the toes together is one of those ‘Marmite’ things. You either love it or hate it! Now when I came to my first sock I was actually petrified following I had heard so many bad things about this technique, but now I have kitchenered (7 socks so far) It has now clicked. I have also had to unravel them a few times which I have found sometimes making mistakes is the best way to improve your knitting as you can really start to see how the stitches are working and how to fix them.
Now I am going to share a couple of picture with you. My Grandads lovely big size 11 socks! and the pair I managed to knit in secret and surprise my husband with on his Birthday. He had no idea I had made them and I am pleased to say in his words “they are the most comfortable socks he has ever worn”
So until next time