When I discovered the world of knitting on the web a few weeks ago I was struck by the number of references to knitting socks. Socks? Yep - people were knitting socks. Lots of them. And there was a whole industry in special yarns just for socks.
I scoffed. I mocked. Why on earth would anyone knit socks? I've been knitting since I was 5 and apart from specialty Christmas stockings for Santa to stuff with goodies I've never even considered knitting a sock. I mean - they are pretty readily available and pretty cheap. Weirdos. That's what I decided the sock knitters were.
But somehow, as I read more blogs and message boards the idea didn't seem quite so ridiculous. (This either demonstrates my flexible nature or my follow the pack mentality - you decide.) I started to see the advantage of the portable sock as a project. The simple sock as back up knitting for those moments when you feel like doing a stitch or two, but don't have time to settle into a knitting sess.
And the yarn did look cool. So colourful! Colours I'd NEVER in a million years consider in a sweater or cardigan seemed sensible for socks.
So I bought some sock yarn. And cast on my first pair. (Double pointed birch needles - 5 inch.)(If I was going to knit socks I wasn't going for any of this two circulars or magic loop business.)(Traditional. Socks demand traditional.)
Anyway, I cast on my first pair and loved the fine yarn on the small needles. Knitting on 4 needles has always made me feel like a 'real' knitter. It just looks like what a real knitter would be doing. (And non-knitters NEVER believe that it isn't any harder than 'regular' knitting so it inspires awe in all who watch.)
So I was converted. Socks were fun to knit. But would anyone wear them? (I doubt I will.)(I'm not much of a sock wearer.) Blogs and message boards were full of people crushed under the demands of their friends and family for hand knit socks. Me - well, when I mentioned hand knit socks to anyone and how I was knitting lots of socks which hadn't yet been claimed by any feet I got non-commital nods of sympathy and a quick change of topic. Somehow I seemed to be living in a sock black hole where NO ONE wanted hand knit socks.
This was a problem as my new found sock interest meant I had managed to accumulate in 2 weeks more than 8 balls of sock yarn, -- with another 5 on order.
But luckily, as so often happens in my life, my best friend CC stepped in to save the day. There we were in Starbucks, gossiping, sorting out the world, me knitting on another sock doomed to languish in my yarn basket forever for lack of willing feet... when she said "what are you making?" "A sock," I replied. And then she said those magic words "I'd love some wool socks."
Not only that she has 4 children! Each with 2 feet who also all want socks! WooHoo!
That is why she's my best friend. (Well, not really, but it's the number one reason this week.)