Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Does Sock Yarn Count?

Of course, we all know the answer to that-but I was referring to when you measure your stash, because if it does, I am in deep trouble! While I am still on a Sock Summit high (and we all know I did not attend but was there in spirit), I decided to sort my sock yarns into hand-dyed and the 'other kind'. Only a year ago, the 'other kind' was just fine with me but that was before I ventured into the world of hand-dyed sock yarn and even did some hand-dying myself. Now the only yarns I deem acceptable for me to use in my sock projects is 'hand-dyed' and Sock Summit just fed that notion. So today I sorted, and not counting the dyed roving sitting there waiting to be spun into sock yarn-but that is another story, I have 22 different dyed-by-hand, absolutely gorgeous (OK, one is not so gorgeous) sitting in my stash. Each one ready to be knit into socks. And that doesn't count the 2 pairs that are on my needles as I type-so that makes 24. Which if I am counting correctly and if I knit 1 pair of socks every month is enough to last me 2 years! Actually, that is better than I thought-I probably missed some here or there. Of course, I do not knit a pair of socks a month because (a) I am not a fast knitter, (b) I have other projects - like lace scarfs and bulky-knit sweaters and teapot cosies and... - on the needles at all times and (c) I do other things in my life besides knit. The other question is, what am I going to do with the 11 balls (each one can make 1 pair of socks) of perfectly good 'other kind' of sock yarn I also have sitting in my stash.

You may also notice a trend in the colors of the yarn - you might notice that shades of brown and other earth tones tend to predominate. There are 2 lonely skeins of shades of blue - they are for socks for my DH. There is also 1 skein of rich Christmas colors which will some day be my very own special socks for that holiday season and there is a strange looking white/bright green/orange/brown - this colorway was named 'Fallen Leaves' and is not what I expected it to be - but it may knit up better than it looks in the skein. And here is the kicker - I spend hours searching the web for MORE hand-dyed sock yarn to buy - and SS09 didn't help there because it provided me with the names of lots more websites to visit to find more hand-dyed sock yarn - I sense a vicious cycle here - one I don't sense a solution to. But, it is a good problem to have because just looking at all of this beautiful yarn makes me smile and feel happy inside.

An update to the saga of the Penllyn socks : I have cast-on sock # 4! This is the 2nd sock in the pair I am knitting for my cousin. And I discovered something with sock # 3 (2nd sock in the pair for me) - if I knit 2 rows of ribbing (I am using top-down Magic Loop on this sock - toe-up is a different story) before I join in the round it is much easier for me to join without twisting and when I finish and weave in the ends all I have to do is quickly seam up 2 rows and it looks just fine. I have always found the first row I knit after casting-on and joining in the round is problematic for me - I just make a regular mess of it and usually frog 2 or 3 times before I am on my way. So, if you have that same sock bugaboo - try it, you may like it.
PS. I am knitting on the legs of my SS09 2-at-a-time-toe-up socks and I only have about 5 more inches to go until they are complete! I love knitting socks!
PPS. I am at 31" before blocking on my Cat's Paw scarf and already deciding on a pattern and yarn (Jamieson's Shetland Spindrift) for my next lace scarf - I love knitting lace!

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