I’ve started on my first Fibreshed garment. A pair of socks.
Started is perhaps too big a word. I made a swatch which tested my gauge, but it also made people worry the fabric would be too scratchy for socks. Had I blended the yarn with too much Shropshire?
I knitted about two inches of fabric in the round as a prototype. My intended sock wearer gave the prototype a test run. Perhaps he’s one of the tough older generation, perhaps he didn’t take this too seriously. Whatever the reason, he’s happy with the texture so we’re going ahead!
Another concern that fellow knitters brought up is that my sock pattern might not be the correct size. So I googled how to size socks. Oh my, has that brought the nerd out in me! I found an awesome sock pattern generator that writes a pattern according to your measurements and gauge (only available in inches, so I convert to metric).
I was so impressed by this article on fitting socks that I bought the author’s book on the subject. So far, I’ve learnt that these things extend the life of a hand knitted sock:
- Good fit: resists abrasion, which would wear away at the yarn
- Gentle washing: especially because there’s no nylon in these socks
- Wear in shoes: wearing as slippers increases abrasion
- Use tightly twisted, multi-ply yarn and knit densely: makes for a stronger fabric
- Maybe use sock blockers: because my yarn is 100% wool
Luckily, my intended sock wearer has conventionally sized feet, although his heel protrudes more than average. I’m not sure yet what I ought to do about that. There’s also instructions on how to reinforce heels, so I might adjust my approach more as I read further.
I’ve already knitted up and pulled out about four times, I expect I do so several more times before I’m done!
A post script on connections
I recently got to meet Nicki of one Year one Outfit in person for the first time! We’re planning two talks to introduce Fibreshed and #1year1outfit to Melbourne. It’s exciting to work with Nicki, as she’s the person who inspired me to start researching the Melbourne Fibreshed in the first place. Of course, I asked if I could see her outfit from last year, which is even better in real life 🙂
I’ll update the Fibreshed Melbourne facebook group with details on the talks when we’ve locked them in. Hope to see you there!