Monday, January 6, 2014

Learning Curve

The first time he visited me after I went away for college, my dad handed me an envelope that contained $200. He told me to treat myself and do something fun with it. After considering some of my options, I drove to the LYS near campus and bought my first set of DPNs, a copy of Favorite Socks, and 2 skeins of Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock Multi. I had decided it was time to become a Knitter (For Real), and it was time to make my first pair of socks.

It took me about 2 weeks, but I finished one sock. I distinctly remember grafting the toe, trying it on, and running down the hall of my dorm to show my friend that I had made a sock. A sock. I was still mystified by how it happened, but it had happened. I've never suffered from Second Sock Syndrome, so thankfully I started my next one right away and finished within a week.

These are in no way the best socks I've ever made. The yarn is great quality, but I know now that I'm not a fan of pooling. The pattern is Cable Rib Socks, which was enough of a challenge at the time but would be normal KIP work for me now. Doesn't matter. I have an emotional attachment to these socks (and the horrible pictures) and will never get rid of them.

After about 2 years of light use, I got a hole on the toe of one of the socks. I didn't know what to do about it, so I tied knots in the loose ends of the yarn and retired them to the bottom of my drawer. It was one of those, "Oh, I'll mend that when I have a chance" kind of projects that I put off for, oh, 4 years. I finally decided this week that it was time to learn how to darn.

Good news: I can now wear my socks again. Bad news: seriously, the toe looks ridiculous. It's my first pair of socks, though, so I guess it makes sense that these are my guinea pigs for new techniques.

Here's the toe after untying the super sophisticated knots and trimming all of the loose ends. You can sort of see the D-shape of foundation stitches I made around the hole. Fun fact: did you know it's not easy to make this look pretty when you're using a variegated yarn? Lesson #1.

Okay, stop laughing. I know. I know! I should have been a lot more careful about the section of yarn I chose to fix this, since it sticks out like a thumb. Or a big toe. And yes, the craftsmanship is a bit...shoddy.

But look! All of my toes stay inside the sock now! I'd say that's a big improvement. Hopefully my next darning attempt will be a little more presentable.

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