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Epiphany

Self-discovery can be a disquieting, disturbing thing. Those suffocating moments when excuses, finger-pointing, I'll-think-about-it-tomorrows, and all the other carefully woven protective veils fall away, and you force yourself, for the first time, to look at things as they really are? Tragic, really - there are realizations that turn the world into a suddenly cold and shelterless place, that rock the very foundations of identity! For, how can you move on, if you never really knew who you were? All goes dark in one terrifying moment.

I don't think I like to knit socks.

I know, I know - it's even worse than you imagined.

I've started dozens of pairs of socks in my life, but finished only three. Three! For a long time, I blamed it on a perpetually missing tapestry needle, and thus no way to graft toes closed (never mind that they cost 80 cents). When that wore through, I shrugged, said "Everyone gets second sock syndrome," and knitted merrily on other things. When that excuse started to show its age, oh, sock knitting hurt my hands (curiosly, the only kind that ever did). I wanted to knit socks, I wanted to be a sock knitter! I would stop at nothing to preserve the illusion.

Lies, all lies, I see that now. It's time to stop hiding, to see the truth - I just don't really care for sock knitting. I hate the fiddliness of heel construction, the cramped canvas, the forcing of fit to make a pattern work. And besides, I hardly ever wear 'em - if I'm not in heels, I'm barefoot. What's the point?

Three single socks, socks I'm admitting here and now will never, ever see mates:

Embossed Leaves sock

Pattern: Embossed Leaves Socks, by Mona Schmidt for Interweave Knits Winter 2005
Yarn: Spirit Trail sock yarn
Yardage: about 150 yards
Yarn Source: Maryland Sheep & Wool 2006
Needles: 2.25mm (US 1) Brittany birch DPNs
Gauge: --
Modifications: needle substition

Raindrop Lace Sock

Pattern: Raindrop Lace Socks, by Evelyn Clark for Fiber Trends
Yarn: Claudia Handpaints sock yarn in Calypso
Yardage: about 150 yards
Yarn Source: All About Yarn
Needles: 2.25mm (US 1) Brittany birch DPNs
Gauge: --
Modifications: needle substition

Cabled Sock

Pattern: My own
Yarn: Claudia Handpaints sock yarn in Jungle; Dale Baby Ull
Yardage: about 125 yards each
Yarn Source: All About Yarn
Needles: 2.25mm (US 1) Brittany birch DPNs
Gauge: --
Modifications: --

I feel so free!

Comments

...but...but... the cabled sock is so beautiful!!!

What about the other knee sock that you claimed was "hidden" under your knee-high boot? Were you fibbing then, were you?

Good for you - non-sock-knitters unite! ;) I keep trying to like knitting socks myself, keep casting on for a sock, then giving up halfway to the heel. Too small, too boring, and as I live in California, I have only about 3 weeks a year when it is cold enough to wear socks. Bring on more cute tanks tops, I say!

What about the other knee sock that you claimed was "hidden" under your knee-high boot? Were you fibbing then, were you?

Why, that was one of the three! Mini-Argyles, Norwegian Stockings, and Jaywalkers. The hidden sock was really ugly - the testing ground for some pattern ideas.

Oh Eunny! You taunt me! Why do you have to show the beautiful cabled sock (of your own design) and make me covet it! i think you should make the second sock and write down the pattern while you are at it :)

Your exposition of unmated socks makes me kinda want to show how many sleeveless sweaters i have....

what about the other jaywalkers? are those ever going to be finished?

I'm with you! I actually hate it. I'm terribly at knitting with DPNs in general and usually end up stabbing myself.

However, the cabled sock is lovely! I wish there was a one sock something to do with it . . .

I'm glad you came clean. For penance, heh, please write down the pattern for the intriguing cabled socks and give it away for free;)

That is so funny! Are you at least going to rip those out and reclaim the lovely yarn? Or perhaps a nice shadowbox is in order, you know, for the memory of days gone by... when you used to knit socks.

Your single socks are awfully purty! But if you don't love it, you don't love it.

Good job coming clean - my theory is that you wanted to be a sock knitter because the yarn is so lovely. You can safely move on, though! I've always wished I had the ability to knit shawls, but that's what I've had to leave behind.

Gotta work in your gifts, right? :)

I am SO with you on this one. Maybe if socks played a bigger part in my life in general I would get more excited about making them, but they never have and never will. Your cabled sock is very nice, by the way. But whatever - life is too short to spend knitting something you won't use!

Those cabled socks are amazing! Is it just a really deep cable, or is the cable pattern in a different color than the background? If so, can you please explain how you did that????

Sorry for so many questions, but you've really lit a fire under me with that one!

I think it's really important to knit what pleases you. Congratulations for coming out of the closet! So, what will you do with your orhaned sock yarn? Mittens?

Ever since I picked up my first set of DPN and knit my first sock, I've been addicted. Maybe it's the warmth that my always cold feet crave, maybe it's the perfect fit I can achieve that no store bought sock can, or maybe it's my awe, everytime, I turn the heel or form the gusset that keeps me coming back. Or maybe it's because I still haven't figured out if I like toe up or cuff down better. Anyway, I love the cable socks. Very intricate design...I have a weak spot for cables.

That cabled sock is so beautiful! I hate knitting pairs too, but have yet to admit I hate knitting socks. I have only 3 single socks...long way to go. Fortunately I don't mind wearing different socks on each foot!

Well, more sock yarn for the rest of us I guess! I hated socks before, but for some reason, I'm really liking them now. Who knows, I may hate them again in a while!

I love that cabled sock. The color difference really makes them pop.

What about the Argyle sock? Did you end up with 2 of those? (my ultimate all time favorite sock so far!)

Hmmm. No socks. Interesting. Well, whatever makes you happy. You're too talented to knit things you don't love. And you know, you can always change your mind later.

Glad you've set yourself free.
I have an idea...why don't you send your unpaired socks and that unused sock yarn to me and I'll figure out what to do with 'em (wink, wink).

Such lovely socks--especially that cabled sock, but I understand where you're coming from. Do what makes you happy, that's what knitting is all about.

In the three years I've knitted, I have about 6 pairs of socks done and almost that same amount undone. I've been trying to get myself to finish my second Pomtomaous sock for the last two weeks.

I still haven't finished the second sock of the first pair of the Six Sox KAL either!!!

Still when I actually sit down to knit socks, I like knitting them, and I still think heel turns are magic, so I will press on.

Didn't you knit some AMAZING knee socks? Like knock-me-on-the-floor knee socks?

I find that knitting socks hurts my hands much more than other types of knitting too. I think it's because I'm usually knitting at a tighter gauge for the yarn than I normally would.

THANK-YOU! That cabled sock is beautiful. I don't know if I would actually knit it though. I'd probably get my mom to do it for me. She's a sock freak. ^_^

That cabled sock is really fantastic! Hey, you've identified an area you just don't enjoy. Why fight it?

Wow, that cabled sock is stunning! It's perfectly okay if socks aren't your thing... you are an amazing knitting designer in so many other aspects... go with what you love!

There's no need to keep lying to yourself especially if you don't enjoy it. So I'm glad you came clean. I'm sure your mind and your fingers are much happier. At least now you have 3 spare stockings for Christmas!

Okay, you don't have to! But I NEED that cable sock pattern...I promise to knit two of them!!

But, But, but.... the argle socks? The cabled sock? Don't leave me hanging! If you are going to leave the Cult of Sock Knitting, you should pay penance by writing up those patterns! Then I PROMISE, us sock knitters won't ever ask for anything else ever ever again. (I am going to be thinking about those cabled socks all day)

Socks are my favorite knitting project! I'm absolutely drooling over that lonely Embossed Leaves sock! (I could give it a loving home for you - wink) I say knit what you like though. If it isn't socks, then who really cares....you need to knit for yourself! :)

Try the toe-up sock. Short rows. Very, very easy. Much less fiddly than traditional heel and toe construction. Added bonus: no Kitchener. :)

I congratulate you for being so brave! Self-discovery, that's not for the faint of heart! But I feel sad for those beautiful pairless socks... send them for me and I'll finish them for you! :-)

phew! if the great eunny doesn't like knitting socks, then it's ok for me not to! my friend's been trying to get me to knit socks, but i just can't seem to bring myself to even cast on for one...i'd rather use sock yarn for other stuff, and i don't think i'd ever wear handknit socks, truthfully.

Wow - those socks are fantastic! I really love your cable pattered sock. So pretty.

They look great but I understand. I came to the same type of self-discovery. I like socks only because I like the availability of pretty sock yarns but I don't like making intricate socks. I've decided that I'll only ever make plain old stockinette socks with a tad bit of ribbing. It's the most the sock world will ever get out of me.

I'm with everyone else - I LOVE the cabled sock! What a tease.

I really agree with you, though... the only times I've had a desire to knit socks were seeing your knee stockings, the Pomatomus socks, and just now - those cabled socks of yours if there were ever a pattern for them. Sock patterns are pretty, but I don't wear socks often, and when I do have to wear socks, I'd hate to ruin pretty hand-knit ones! I haven't really tried much to knit socks, though, so I don't really know how well I'll enjoy it. I think I'm a sweater knitter, myself.

I quite understand. My self-discovery about sock knitting fortunately came before sock number 1 was finished. I started this elaborate Austrian cable knee sock, borrowing the general idea of a sock pattern elsewhere. About 4 inches into it I realised that I wasn't having any fun, and decided to make it a short sock. Then, about halfway through the foot, I found I REALLY wasn't enjoying it, and made it a child's short sock. Having completed that, I couldn't bring myself to start its partner, so instead I bought some clay and sculpted a foot-shaped vase, put the sock on that, and gave it to a poor, unsuspecting in-law as a Christmas present. I will not attempt socks again. Maybe.

Wow, it took a lot of courage to put that out into the blogosphere. I'm not quite there, I just think that I haven't found the right sock pattern yet. Plus my issue is with the pairs, when I finish the first sock I feel done. That may also be why I have so many sweaters that only need to be seamed.

Oh, I ache inside. That cabled sock is so beautiful. Would you at least write the pattern up for those of us who have succombed to the evil addiction of sock knitting? PLEASE??!!

Good for you! Nothing wrong with not being a sock knitter. I'm not either!

Well, you're the first knitter I've ever heard say she didn't like socks, but there's got to be at least one, right? And I must say I have no need whatsoever to knit those incredibly gorgeous, gossamery, insanely complex shawls out of yarn the size of sewing thread (I'd much rather look at the pics of yours, thankyou). It takes all kinds. :)

Meanwhile, what can this mean for the pattern for the argyle knee-highs? I feel panicky now...

I've always avoided putting my disinterest in knitting socks out there for fear the sock-fiends might come after me in the night. I totally agree with you! I attempted one sock, and had no interest in either finishing it or starting any others.... I guess some of us are just not sock people!

Oh, I don't particularly like knitting socks either and, frankly, the cult of sockitude around the internet freaks me out a little. I keep doing it because I like wearing them, but I only knit plain stockinette ones on 12" circs and then only at the movies--ribbing at home, leg in one movie, heel at home, foot in another movie, toe at home. Depending on what's in the theaters, it can take months to finish a pair, but so what?

i feel the same way but have been completely afraid to say it! isn't that crazy? yes, they're portable, and yes, sock yarn is so fabulous. but i just don't get a kick from finishing them. phew, that does feel better.

I've got the same problem. I've come to realize that the only solution is either to stop knitting socks or lose a leg. I guess giving up the sock-knitting might be easier. Your socks still beautiful though!

okay, just because you're not going to knit socks anymore doesn't mean you're not going to give us all the pattern for that unbelievably gorgeous cabled sock, though, right? right? please!?

Though I love knitting socks I can say : good for you! Knitting should be fun and if you don't enjoy socks, you shouldn't knit them! We all like to knit different things!

I for one like all your designs so I don't care if it's not socks, but I'm still hoping you will put up the argyle sock pattern! And maybe the cabled one you are showing here? I wouldn't mind test knitting it if you really prefer not to knit the second one!

Love!

No problem if you don't want to knit socks. I don't want to knit lace. That doesn't make us bad people -- or even bad knitters. Just opinionated knitters.

However.

You cannot let those poor singleton socks remain in their despairing singleness and solitude. If you don't want to give them to me (and there is absolutely no reason why you should), maybe you should have a contest, give them and their remaining yarn as prizes, and make someone, or three someones, very very happy?

I don't like knitting socks either, though I have only attempted one pair. I was almost done my first one, but it looked really messed up, so I frogged it.

The socks are beautiful. You should frame them! It won't matter then if you have the pair or not; people can appreciate them for the singleness.

Thank you so much for posting this! You have unburdened what has become a deep dark secret of mine! I'm determined to finish this second pair of socks that I started last year, but a good friend has pledged to keep me away from the sock patterns indefinitely. We'll find another use for those gorgeous handpainted sock yarns -- like shawls!

eh..knitting socks is highly overrated.

Much too boring and over too quickly. You should join our Apathetic Sock Knitters Club.

Does this mean that we don't get a knee-high argyle sock pattern? :(

Even if they will never have mates, they're grrrreeeaatt!!!

I was knitting up a sock rather similar to your celtic knot work ones, but I had changing background colors. They are still languishing as I decided that I really hated two handed fair isle with the purl stitches thrown in on DPNs. Talk about fussy. It drove me batty.

Cheers,

Miriam

Thank god there are others out there! I where socks as little as possible and when I do I prefer the fugly tube sock with the two stripes at top.

Amen, sister! I'm with you! I can't make sense of sock knitting - it seems so much work on such small needles for two small items of clothing that won't stay up properly.

You're really good at it though. They're all so good looking especially the "embossed leaves sock".

You're still gonna pass on the pattern for those beautiful cable socks and the argyle ones though, right??? You design an amazing sock for someone who isn't really into it :)

i have a single sock (intarsia in the round) which shall never have a mate. i call it my 'solstice sock', and hang it on the fireplace during the holidays.
i do like to knit socks, but have 2 singles right now, where i've misfiled the rest of the yarn, so i can't finish them...

Even if YOU can't do the cabled socks, can we?!?! I'd be all over a pattern for that.

Well... to paraphrase the immortal Popeye, you are what you are. And if you're not a sock knitter, you're not a sock knitter. No shame in that!

(Besides, this leaves more sock yarn for the rest of us. ;-)

Sounds like you should package up the socks, the patterns and the remaining yarn and have a contest for those who do like knitting socks. The only caveat to this would be that some of us might be too intimidated to undertake the challenge of finishing a Eunny project, especially the cabled socks! Congrats on the epiphany (love that word). Maybe you can use residual sock yarn to make some more lovely lace projects. You excel at lace. Happy knitting!

My mother is making up for your distaste of knitting socks, since that's ALL that she ever does.

You go girl! Burn those bras and ditch those second socks! This is the new millenium, and women can be plumbers and secretary of state and stay-at-home-Mom's and knit however damn many socks we want! Harumph!

Okay, but seriously? That's how I feel about cuff-downs. I would rather bite my own ear off than knit 'em.

Toe ups, though....

The cable sock is terrific, though....

Hmmm... heel construction is too fiddly for you yet you can knit 400 miles of lace with a microscopic string on size "nothing" needles with 87 row lace repeats?? :-P It really takes all kinds to make a world. LOL! As a very avid sock knitter I humbly request that even though you're giving up KNITTING socks that you would please continue to DESIGN them. Particularly I'd love to see that cabled sock pattern. I see I'm not alone in this. That sock is a MASTERPIECE!

Your knee high argyle socks made me want to run out and sign up for a sock class for the sole reason of knitting them. Other than that, I haven't been able to bring myself to try a sock.
If you ever offer the pattern for those argyle socks, this non-sock knitter will eagerly try them out. I join the ranks of those begging for this pattern.

Personally, short row heels are the trick for me. I hate those flaps-and-gussets. THey look weird and fit weirder. :-) Even if you never knit the second cabled sock, perhaps you'd post the technique for the color A cable over the color B background?

Hurray for You!!!! (and me too as I don't feel so alone now.) Confession is good for the soul they say and as we say at our house TTMO (time to move on!)

I think my disinterest in sock knitting (and wearing) comes from receiving luscious and scratchy handspun socks from my grandmother in Germany. They were too thick and oddly fit. Now the mitts and scarves were often used. (All are still lovingly preserved to this day and woe betide the errant moth that may come our way!)

So rejoice in your new found freedom!

P.S.--Hints on DC area LYS please. We're going to be there in early July.

OK, retire if you must -- but you MUST leave us with that cable sock pattern. That is GORGEOUS. Pretty please with organic honey on top?

Knitting what you love is really the most important thing. It is supposed to be creative - which you most certainly are - and fun. But about your lovely socks...send me the single socks and the rest of the yarn, and I'll finish them :)

Everything you knit is beautiful.

ohhhhhhhhhhhhhh that cable sock is gorgeous! Don't suppose there's any hope of getting that pattern is there???

I can understand why you don't like socks, I'm not a huge fan myself, but I wear them constantly, so I knit them occasionally.

But could you PLEASE make the cabled sock pattern available? I'd so spend money on buying it...

I love knitting socks. But to each her own. Why knit something you don't like knitting? I will say that all three of those socks are lovely, however.

I'm with you on the sock thing. i don't have much call for brightly colored knitted socks in a city where everyone wears "sophisticated" black (hmmmm). And I'm persuaded people look at my feet last, so if I want compliments on my knitting (I do, I do!) I need to wear it about my face & shoulders. But I do love sockweight/fingering and bamboo needles, so lately have been using it a lot for lace.

Congratulations for the self-reflection and honesty.
Do you have a use in mind for the three lonely socks? (Yule stockings come to mind for my house...)

honey,
If you don't knit the mate to any other sock, you need to finish that last sock. it's beautiful.

I didn't like sock knitting for a long time...having to deal with all those needles was messing with my head.

Gee, that's just too bad about the socks, but wow me and the rest of the gals and guys would really like to have that cabled sock pattern. (Some of us might climb over the bodies of your dead socks to get to it) tee hee.

Ohh, Eunny, those socks are all so beautiful! I'll buy them and the leftover yarn off you and finish the pairs if you like! (I have no idea if they'd fit me, but they are too beautiful to throw away!)

Christmas Stockings don't need mates!

you should do the 2-at-once method...magic loop or 2 socks w/ 2 circs. when you are finished you are FINISHED!!!! :)

Well, it's good that you understand what you like and what you don't. Shame though. You have some gorgeous single socks.

Oh my gawd, I love the cabled sock! Have you published the pattern anywhere? I would love to knit those!

I do hope you finish all those pairs. They are going to be so pretty!

My epiphany was that I hate to WEAR hand-knit socks, therefore it is of no earthly use for me to knit them! I get soooo bored reading nothing but sock knitting posts...thank you thank you for a grand revelation!

Ahhem! I seem to remember Wendy saying a similar thing for a long time! :-) Have you read her blog lately??? Never say never! :-)

All three socks are lovely, but that cabled sock is AMAZING. You must take pity on us and finish its mate...

I'm in love with your cable sock, like so many other people, but I understand. Give me a curvy sweatergirl sweater any day...

Or a spindle. I kind of like those too :-)

The leaf sock is gorgeous. Take bids on them; we'll finish them. Or - are you going to rip them out? I hardly ever wear socks either. Not even sure why I'm making a pair right now. Might be because I'm moving to MN soon.

Hi Eunney,
I am going to ask what many others have asked... for the cabled sock pattern. Its gorgeous. :)
I would pay tho, if you wanted thats fine with me :)
Sharah

I can totally deal with your decision to never knit another sock...but that doesn't mean you don't like writing pattern's, right! I want...errrr I NEED...that cabled sock pattern! I've never seen a more beautiful pair of socks!

long time lurker first time poster :)
LOVE your blog and your original designs are just fabulous. Sorry to hear that you have made the firm decision to not like making socks (my personal obsession) but will so let that slide - your sweaters are amazing and you really need to sell the pattern for the two-tone cable sock - i'll buy in a heartbeat - and i am not one to buy patterns easily! :)

Have you thought about selling that cabled sock pattern? i really do LOVE IT!!

The cabled sock is so beautiful! Will you put the pattern on the internet? Pleeeeaaaase!!! :-)

Oh, but Eunny! WHAT do we have to offer or do in order to get a pattern for the cabled sock? Pretty please? Sugar and whipped cream with a cherry on top?

I think that whatever you enjoy knitting at any given point in time is what's perfect for you. No need for confessions -- just knit away on what makes you happy. Isn't that what this whole hobby is supposed to be about?

Oh my goodness, I'm in LOVE with the cabled sock! I am not into sock-knitting at all, so much so that I have never, ever knit a single one because I just don't fancy any of the socks out there. Maybe if I made them all knee-high instead of ankle (I hate hate hate ankle socks (AKA regular length socks, which come up to your calf if you pull them up but they invariably fall to your ankles)!). But I've never attempted a sock just because I really don't like any of the patterns I've seen enough to knit them. But oh lordy, if you offered the pattern for those cabled socks, my sock wardrobe this winter would surely consist of entirely cabled socks!!! I'd definitely pay for the pattern, and I'd pay more to have a knee-high option, since I'm entirely un-knowledgeable of how to turn any old sock pattern into a knee-high...

OK, that lonely cable knit sock. UNBELIEVABLY GORGEOUS! I note you may have come around to the sock knitting thing....if you ever write that pattern up I would LOVE it!

A fly in the ointment... Effemia

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