Wednesday, 15 November 2006

I think this sock is a little too big, don't you?

A little while ago, I started these socks for my uncle. He deserves socks partly because he is almost impossible to think of Christmas presents for, and mostly because he loves that I knit. He likes to tell me two stories about knitting in my family. The first is that when his grandparents arrived in South Africa from Lithuania, his grandmother earned their living by making clothes. She made baby clothes and patterned sweaters, and whenever my great-grandpa saw someone wearing a Fair Isle jumper, he would follow them along the street, memorising the pattern stitch for stitch until he could go home and write it down for my great-grandma who would add it to her collection. The second is that my grandmother, who is legendary in my family as a wonderful knitter, could never work out how to fix her own mistakes. My grandpa didn't knit at all, but whenever she made a mistake she would hand him her knitting as he got home from working on musical radio or playing the trumpet in a nightclub, and he would fix it straight away and hand it back to her.

For these socks for my dear uncle I wanted a simple, straightforward pattern, one I could neither quarrel with nor change my mind about halfway through, and settled on Thuja, which has the added benefit of claiming to be quick. I chose this yarn as the manliest I could find at Stash, and the best substitute there for the Artyarns Supermerino. Then for some reason I now can't remember, I did some calculations and came up with a number of stitches which might fit Hossein Reza Zadeh, but not my slip of an uncle.

Retrieving the sock stub from the knitting basket today, it occurs to me that this isn't the right yarn for a pair of uncle socks either. I know he likes the colours because the sock fell tactlessly out of my bag when I went to visit him one day, but the yarn is too squooshy and bouncy and squeezable to be turned into a pair of socks. Especially ones that will get a lot of wear on stone floors and inside hiking boots. Plus, I don't think I like knitting socks with yarn this fat after all.

So peeps, what do you think? Do I abandon the Thuja sock altogether and find some yarn for either socks like these or an even simpler sock, a very plain one with a few strategically placed stripes like those of the Gentleman's Sock in railway stitch (minus the railway stitch. Time and skills are of the essence people), or do I turn the yarn into something else entirely for my uncle?

I have already considered and rejected wristwarmers.


Elinor said...

I'd go with Thuja, especially if you're feeling pressed for time - it's a fast knit!

Ashley said...

I think that yarn looks like it would make a swell hat, and hats are very speedy.

knittingphilistine said...

I'm with Ashley on the hat...unless, perhaps, your uncle actually *needs* a fancy knit beer koozie,

Rachel said...

Looks like you've got yourself a great vermouth bottle cozy there. Does your uncle happen to drink vermouth? Just kidding. I don't get the point of those drink cozies at all.
Anyway, I personally like fat squishy socks for wearing around the house without shoes when it's cold, would your uncle wear socks like that? If so you could just rework that yarn into a pair that would fit.

Elli said...

That's a tough one...I think the hat idea is a good one. Or maybe fingerless gloves? Otherwise a very simple pair of socks in a lighter-weight yarn if you can get your hands on some easily. But do you have the time? It sounds like your uncle would love just about anything you make him though.

Hmmmm...I'm not much help here, am I?

Marie said...

What about a cozy, squishy-soft scarf? The yarn would look lovely in some sort of ribbed pattern. Fast to knit and as practical as socks. :)

Steph said...

You could just make a simple 2x2 rib sock, it's my favorite kind for bf. He has pretty skinny legs, so I always use 68 sts on US 2 needles (he like his socks to fit very tight, maybe 72 would work too.)