I have a confession to make: I don’t like hand-knit socks. I thought I was the only knitter to feel this way, but I recently discovered that I’m not alone! Socks take a certain amount of patience to make, especially with small children around that like all the multiple thin, pokey sticks and think nothing of pulling one out regularly. Once I finish with one and I’m feeling all accomplished and proud, I realize that I’m only half way done and have to start the process all over again.
And after weeks of knitting while little ones slept and while the husband drives everywhere, I have this beautiful pair of socks that I just know will fit better than any store-bought socks and will keep my feet so warm and cozy. Only I pull them on over my feet and they don’t live up to my expectations. The cast-on is too tight, which makes it difficult to pull over my heel. The ankle is slouchy. The instep is too large. The foot feels a bit short. Disappointment.
I wear them anyway, proud of what I’ve accomplished, and gladly accept compliments and brag about how amazing my hand-knit socks are, but secretly curse them.
But I’m a glutton for punishment and take full responsibility for my shortcomings. It must have been the yarn I used, the pattern that I followed, my technique, my lack of knitting a gauge swatch (which is another post all in itself!) So what do I do? I try again. And again and again. I’ve convinced myself that there must be a perfect pattern and perfect yarn to make the mythical perfect pair of socks and I’ll just have to keep trying until I find the combination that works!
So in my latest efforts, I decided to ditch sock yarn and go with a washable worsted weight, thinking it would take less time and less stitches. I chose some Cascade Paints that I had hidden in my stash. And since my issues seem to be ill-fit, I wanted a simple cable to tighten up those pudgy areas. I decided on the Spanish Dancer pattern. I declared this pair to be for my mama’s birthday since she was the one who gifted me my first sock yarn, needles, and pattern a few years back for Christmas.
They took less than 2 weeks to knit. Upon finishing the first sock, I cautiously tried it on expecting the worst. Gasp! It fit! The cables did exactly what I hoped and made it snug around the ankle and nice around the top of my foot! My toes didn’t feel squished and curled! Could it be!? Excitedly, I knit up the second sock! I had my friends try them on for size and fit, and they has similar reviews! SUCCESS!
I proudly wrapped them up and presented them to my mom on her birthday. She made my knitting heart thump and promptly kicked off her shoes, put them on, and raved about how wonderfully they fit! I think I found a keeper of a pattern and will be knitting more socks!