Socktoberfest 2006: You got questions…I got answers

So here, a little late (better than never, right) are my answers to Lolly’s Socktoberfest questions:

When did you start making socks? Did you teach yourself or were you taught by a friend or relative? or in a class?
I started making socks in 2005. I taught myself, with the help of Knitty’s sock-knitting tutorials. Now that Neighborhood Fiber Company is up and running, I hope to design lots of sock patterns to support our yarn!

What was your first pair? How have they “held up” over time?
My first pair…I think I ripped out a few. Finally (FINALLY!) I finished the blue socks that I wrote about last week. Pitiful that it took me so long to finish them, but I had a lot of other projects going. And for some reason, the “sock-knitting bug” didn’t bite me the way it bites other knitters. Not a life-altering experience. But I liked making them.

What would you have done differently?
I would have started knitting socks sooner! For some reason, I was terrified of double-pointed needles until last year. Suddenly I gained courage, and they started to make sense. Now I love them…LOVE them! I almost cried when I broke a US #1 ebony needle while knitting some gloves for my husband.

What yarns have you particularly enjoyed?
I’ve used Dale Sisik, Koigu, Karabella 8, Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock, and a few others. I love the feel of Sisik and Karabella 8 for “indoor socks.” Neighborhood Fiber Company–the hand-painted yarn company Karida and I launched this year–also makes sock yarn…lush as Koigu, with gorgeous saturated colors. I’ll post some photos of socks made with our yarn one of these days…

Do you like to crochet your socks? or knit them on DPNs, 2 circulars, or using the Magic Loop method?
I love DPNs, but for convenience I’ve been using the Magic Loop (one circular). Doing the gussets on one circ is a real pain, though. I might end up using two circs for “traveling socks,” and DPNs for the ones I make at home. I’m not a big fan of crocheted socks (or crocheted clothing, for that matter…sorry!)

Which kind of heel do you prefer? (flap? or short-row?)
I like a nicely turned heel with a flap. I like the design possibilities. Short row heels leave me a bit cold, but they’re great for quick knitting and toe-up patterns.

How many pairs have you made?
Oh, I don’t know. A few? Several? I didn’t keep count. Like I said, I tend to rip things out if I’m not happy with the way the yarn’s working, if I realize I don’t like the pattern after all, or if I get bored with them. Since I stopped using other people’s patterns, I’ve found sock knitting much more energizing. I’ve completed two pairs in the past two months…along with the million and one other knitting projects I have going.

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