Slightly odd socks

iPhoto tells me this was taken July 5.

iPhoto tells me this was taken July 5.

It turns out that maybe the best way to finish a pair of plain socks is to cast on an intricately cabled sweater. These socks have been on my needles since April. They were my backup knitting: something I could knit a few rows on here and there when I needed a break from whatever else I was working on, or we were spending an afternoon with friends, or I thought I might finish my book on my way home from work and maybe I should tuck my knitting into my bag just in case. And they were perfect.

The first sock languished at the toe decreases for a while (they’re easy, but not totally mindless) and then I finished it up and cast on the second sock back in June, when I thought I might need a stretch of plain stockinette. And then the second sock just sat there with two inches knit until my recent cabling issues. I wasn’t in any rush to finish them, but then after turning the heel on the weekend, I decided I was pretty close to done should maybe just buckle down and finish them off.

After the weekend.

After the weekend.

There has been a twinge of fall in the air here this week, and it has been getting decidedly cool at night, two things that should make me want to finish a big sweater, but instead drove me to knit socks. I can’t explain it.

The two skeins knit up really differently. The first sock barely pooled at all (except around the gusset, which is to be expected), but the second sock flashed like crazy. This is why hand painted yarns are fun.

The two skeins knit up really differently. The first sock barely pooled at all (except around the gusset, which is to be expected), but the second sock flashed like crazy. This is why hand painted yarns are fun.

What I can explain, though, is why they don’t quite match. This goes back to casting on when I needed something plain. I had most of two skeins of this Koigu KPPPM (#P123), so I went for it. Two skeins of Koigu will make me a pair of plain socks almost exactly (that is, minimal leftovers). I knit these socks at 9 sts to the inch, because without the benefit of nylon the tighter knit makes them last longer, so they’re dense, and I have big feet, but one skein per foot is perfect. I, however, did not have one full skein per foot, and instead of altering my standard sock pattern – say, knitting a 5-inch leg instead of my normal 6 inches – I just went on autopilot and then ran out of the first skein just before the toe of the first sock, and then ran out of the second skein in almost exactly the same spot in the second sock.

I had some leftover Koigu (colourway number forgotten) kicking around, so I just used that. They don’t quite match, but I don’t mind so much. I have a soft spot for surprise toes (toes of a different colour, whether just one or both) and when the yarn is this wild and not-matching anyway, I don’t mind at all.


Pattern: Basic 68-stitch cuff-down socks
Yarn: Koigu KPPPM #P123
Needles: 2.25mm
Mods: Besides the toe, none. These are knit more tightly than my normal socks, which is why there are more stitches. Notes are here on Ravelry (thank goodness, because I couldn’t remember the exact numbers of things by the time I got to the second sock!)

Oh, and yes, even though I meant to go right back to Burrard, I may have slipped accidentally and cast on for more socks. Simple Skyp Socks have been popping up all over the place and now I know why.

Knit in Dragonfly Fibers Djinni Sock in the Admiral Benbow colourway.

Super addicting. (Knit in Dragonfly Fibers Djinni Sock in the Admiral Benbow colourway.)

11 thoughts on “Slightly odd socks

  1. introvertedknitter

    I too find that if i am faced with something a bit more…challenging that I may end up finishing up socks. I love the idea of surprise toes, I will have to try that next time I start to run short on yarn. In terms of Skyp socks, I have had a pair on the needles since last Christmas (to be fair they are for the husband, who is a giant) but I am glad to to hear they are branching out in terms of exposure. I’m excited to see how yours turn out. Best of luck!

  2. Sara Crafts

    That “surprise” toe is endearing and before I read through your post, I thought it was completely intentional! It made me want to add a little surprise to one of my socks, too. 🙂

  3. Audry

    You’ve fallen down the Skyp hole. Welcome. I found them super addictive and quite comfortable to wear. And the yarn you’ve chosen is paired perfectly with that pattern.

    1. Angela Hickman Post author

      Thank you! I loved this colourway in the skein, but I think I love how it’s knitting up even more. And that combined with the pattern is making these socks very hard to put down.

  4. Cameron

    Cozy socks! I love the surprise toe.

    I just cast-on an Alice Starmore cabled sweater for my dad, and a Linney sweater for myself. I thought that would be a good balance of cabled and stockinette, but I think socks would have been a smarter choice. Working on two sweaters at once, I don’t think I’m going to see an FO for awhile…

  5. Heidi

    I just adore socks like that – that’s what’s so cool with socks as they can be quirky. By the way socks are also my default knit when I don’t have babies to knit for.

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