Sunday, February 18, 2007

"I'LL NEVER KNIT SOCKS" - did I say that?

I have a love-hate relationship with knitting socks. This is my story.

I started knitting in August of 2005 & really hadn't bothered knitting anything other than scarves for the first few months. I was at a knitting get together in November and a few of my new friends were taking a sock class at our LYS. I was intrigued because I saw those Pipi Longstocking knee socks in my Stitch N Bitch book & thought they were the cutest things ever. On a whim I signed up for class too. Keep in mind - I had never knit on DPNs or knitted anything but a rectangle. Plus I didn't know how to purl. It didn't occur to me that knitting socks might be hard or that at my skill level I probably shouldn't be in that class. You can imagine how thrilled the teacher was with me and it showed.

I ended up not being able to sit near my friends during the class- it was packed & seating was limited. The only DPNs I owned were size 5 - I didn't even think about buying a different size. I picked out a pretty yarn that I liked that was worsted weight - what the heck did I know? Do I have to tell you how awful this turned out? I am a tight knitter anyway & knitting worsted on size 5s was pure hell. Here was the other issue: homework. I really hate knitting on a deadline / being told what & when to knit. So the homework aspect of class didn't thrill me & I attached that to the project.

So I finished sock number one & told myself that was it - I was done. I met several other knitters that didn't knit socks & refused to knit socks (you know who you are) and we all talked about the sock knitters. We said that sock knitting was like a cult. All of the sock knitters want all other knitters to knit socks & we wouldn't be sucked in. We wouldn't drink the spiked "sock knitter" kool aid. Now, I say all of that in jest because some of my best friends are pure sock knitters. I have 3 friends that amongst them have enough sock yarn to open a store, a really really good store too! I just didn't get the appeal and I threw out all of the objections that I'm sure every sock knitter has heard more than they care to:
* You can buy socks for $2 a pair at the store
* They are knit on double points
* Those itty bitty needles drive me nuts
* My personal favorite - I don't wear socks

Fast forward to this past November, a year after my first nightmareish sock class, We got a group of local knitters together & asked our resident teacher for a socks on 2 circs class. I could see the benefit of knowing how to do this for sleeves, hats, and many other circular projects so I signed up. One of my friends pointed out that if I knit the same sock from my beginner class that I’d end up with a pair and be done with socks forever! During this class I figured out all of the problems I listed above with the original class. Everyone else in the class was using pretty sock yarn on smaller needles & I was jealous. I vowed to knit ONE pair of socks on appropriate needles & cool sock yarn. Coincidentally I had some Sock that Rock in Mist colorway in my stash. So here is my progress so far. Then Patrick whined – something about me knitting for everyone but him & not having any house socks, so I started these basic socks for him in Wool Ease, but on appropriately sized needles.

So, after that super long story - I know you are wondering, why did I fall under the sock spell? Did I drink the Koolaid? Have I been brainwashed? Was it peer pressure? Welll.....probably a little bit of all of those things mixed with public enemy #1 - THE YARN IS GORGEOUS. It's just beautiful. There are so many main stream & indy sock dyers that it's insane. And you can get a yarn fix for $20. Way cheaper than yarn for a sweater, shawl, or in a lot of cases even a scarf!

So that’s it! My very long & highly uninteresting sock story. To be honest I was just tired of answering all of my peers giving me shit because I am knitting on a sock at meet ups so I figured I would explain myself. As for my objections? Let me help you out….

* You can buy socks for $2 a pair at the store – You can also buy a sweater for $10 on a sale rack & a scarf for $5 at Walmart – what’s your point?
* They are knit on double points – ummm, no they aren’t, they are knit on circulars.
* Those itty bitty needles drive me nuts – yeah, well, get over it.
* My personal favorite - I don't wear socks – I’m currently rethinking my fashion plan. And I can wear them with my ugly Birkenstocks. And I’ll be making some that I can wear with my flip flops pretty soon. So I COULD wear socks if I wanted to.

Damn the Koolaid!


Tasha said...

I did NOT whine....I simply stated a fact. (Patrick)

Knitting Rose said...

T - you are too funny. I love that you have decided to join the cult. I was never going to knit socks - I thought they would be too hard and be stupid. I do understand all the objections and LOVE your answers for them. Esp - the response - "get over it". priceless. You are so right about the yarn. It is sooo much less expensive (per piece) than any other -but there is just sooo much PRETTY yarn!! It is the draw. That was the only reason I got sucked in as far as I have... and you KNOW how far that is! I am glad you drank the koolaid - you now 'get' us...

Lynn said...

OK, this is one of those "you know who you are" knitters. I guess we should never say never! (currently working my second pair of "Monkey" socks from with the yarn that sock enabler Becky gifted me!)
I'll probably be using circulars too before you know it!

Liz G. said...

Another "you know who you are" knitter here - never ever wanted to do them - but now my sock yarn stash is growing out of it's little bitty container and I have even considered destashing almost everything else to make room for more! Oh...and I love to knit the socks, too, now that I know that the evil dpns don't have to come into play! ;)