Have I told you how much I love my handknit socks? If not, be assured that I do. Very much. So much that in 99.9% of the time I’m wearing socks, they are handknits.
The other times? Well, even I can admit that when it’s nearing 100 F outside it’s too warm to wear wool on the feet. And the only reason I resort to store-bought socks during those times is that I have yet to knit myself a pair of cotton socks. Wearing socks in summer occurs so infrequently. Because flip flops and socks don’t belong together.
But back to the glories of handknit wool socks. I like that they fit my feet perfectly. I like that they guard against blisters. (My shoes, no matter how well-made or how broken in they are, always rub blisters. I guess I have Princess feet.) I like that I made them. I like that they can be whatever color and pattern I want. I like that they keep my toes warm. I like that I can customize them.
I like that they last several years longer than store-bought socks.
Case in point: Here is a recent photo of the toes of my blue cheer socks, completed in March 2012.
You can see there on the tip of the right one, the beginning of a small hole. Friends, if that had been a store-bought sock, the hole would have developed after only one or two seasons. I don’t know what my shoes/toes do to my poor socks while I walk around all day, but that is always where the hole develops. I’ve been wearing this pair of socks every week for nearly five years. That’s a darn good run. (Pun intended. Younglings may want to look up “darn” in the dictionary to get it. It’s not what you think.) Speaking of darning… I think that’s what I’ll do to help this pair go for a bit longer. I’ve got plenty of the original yarn left over. The rest of the sock is doing just fine – no other holes or wear spots to speak of, and they still snap right back into shape with every wash.
Meanwhile, I added a new pair of handknit socks to the growing stash in my sock drawer. These are also delightfully cheerful and warm. Knowing that I am extra hard on my sock toes, I added a bit of texture there to help these last even longer. Basically I worked the same pattern as for a slip stitch heel flap, but on the top and bottom of the toe section. The result is a slightly thicker section of fabric that should take longer to wear through.
I’ll let you know how they’re doing in five years. Time to cast on another pair!
For the Knitters: