Out With the Old, In With the New…Socks

The last pair of socks I knit for myself were Hedera in a lovely skein of Araucania Ranco Multi sock yarn.  I gushed about the colors reminding me of tie-dye, and how much affection I felt for the yarn in general.  It knit up beautifully, and I enjoyed wearing the finished socks very much.


But slowly, every so subtly, they started to change.  To get a little bit fuzzy.  I try to combat the inevitable fuzziness of handknit socks in two ways: I always buy superwash or washable sock yarn, and wash my socks inside out in cold water and lay flat to dry.  This has worked wonderfully to prolong the life of all my other handknit socks.  But something was awry with my Arucania socks.  I started to doubt whether or not the yarn was in fact washable and looked at the label of a second skein I have hanging out in the stash.  Yup, it says it’s washable, lay flat to dry.  So why do my favorite socks look like this?

Felted socks.
Felted socks.

At first I tried to pretend this wasn’t happening, and I would dutifully stretch them out as much as possible before putting them on my feet.  I’m not going to lie: they didn’t fit well at all, nor were they comfortable.  But I was in denial for quite a while.  Somehow I’ve come to terms with reality and have retired these beauties from my sock drawer.  Any suggestions for alternate uses?

And on to the new…Happy 2009!  I am determined this will be a wonderful year, aren’t you?  To help get myself off on the right foot, I cast on a new pair of socks this morning.  For this pair I am using Holidays yarn in ‘bubble gum’ and following the Waving Lace socks pattern from Favorite Socks.  Here is the pretty little scalloped cuff:


Here’s to a wonderful year full of lots of great knitting, friends, and new adventures!

See you in about 10 days, assuming I actually get to leave the airport this time…

11 thoughts on “Out With the Old, In With the New…Socks

  1. Good luck in your travels. That bubble gum pink is absurdly cheery and optimistic. Must be the outlook for 2009!

    Sorry about your Hedera. They are still beautiful, but in a different way. Maybe you should frame them as art?

  2. Oh dear, sorry about the Hederas, they are quite pretty! You said you are stretching them out before trying to put them on…could you use (or make if you don’t already have) a pair of sock blockers to dry them on so they fit and then just use them as house socks?

  3. The before picture is beautiful! I can see why they were your favorite socks before they started to felt. I also support the framing idea. And I love the new pink socks! That pink is the kind of color that just makes you happy whenever you put the socks on.

  4. Hmmm…. I have a felted Auracania sock as well. Just one, but dismay washes over me every time I see it. I, too, am now vigilant about using only superwash sock wool. Happy Travels!

  5. Oh dear! Felted socks are NOT what a girl wants to see when she opens the drawer! I say keep them in your knitting space so you can see them, and knit up a new pair using different sock yarn!

  6. So sorry about your felted socks. I would be so upset too. Love the pattern though and you should try them again with some real superwash yarn.

    You asked in my comments about 2-at-a-time socks. I followed the book’s instructions very carefully and it took me about 3″ from the start before I started to get the rhythm of how they work. They are very fiddly at the start and like everything else, it just takes some practice. For the second pair, I still had to have the book on my lap for the cast-on and to get me going around in the right direction! Hope your trip was good. Liz

  7. I think Araucania (recently?) changed the wool in its sock yarn–the skein in my stash says hand wash, but a skein I saw in the store said machine washing was ok. So maybe you have an old skein and a new skein?

    And I second the mitt suggestion.

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