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I used to read a lot of knitting blogs and knitting socks had just seriously taken off in the early 2000s. I used to watch as bloggers would knit themselves pair of socks after pair of socks and wonder how many pairs one person needed. They would casually say that woollen socks wear and the heels go first and some would even say they threw their socks out when they got holes. I guess back then my Crohn’s Disease was pretty made and as I ran a constant fever, I didn’t wear the socks I made for myself that often. Mine didn’t seem to wear out – I guess cause I didn’t wear the ones I did make for myself but also because I gifted a lot of pairs that I made.

I have noticed the heels do wear first. But the fate that my hand knitted socks seem to perish to is the shrinking of the washing machine. No matter how careful I think I am being, socks get into the washing! I had a lovely ribbed pair I made from Socks that Rock in something like Ruby Red which shrank soon after I made them. I gave them to my sister a couple of months ago – she has much smaller feet but I don’t know if she wears them.

My latest tragedy is the discovery this week of this pair’s shrinkage/felting. (Thumb included for sizing) I’m sad to see these go and feel they deserve a bit of a eulogy. These were knitted from my very first, and most prized, skein of Vesper Self Striping from Knitterly Things – hand dyed, self striping and all the rage probably in 2003. When she’d upload new skeins to her shop, you had to be online and buy them immediately or else they were gone. I think I never managed to buy the colourway I secretly longed for but I really really wanted to try the self striping thing so I bought what I could. This skein. Prized but yet I can’t remember the colourway (ha! Excellent email filing tells me it was “Sweetwater” and I bought it in 2006) and the colours are not quite my thing so I rarely wore them.

And now they are gone. I loved you socks, for the experience you offered. I’m sad they’re gone but on the other hand, they were fun to make, I did love wearing them and now … now I don’t need to feel so bad about making myself another pair to replace them.

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  • By Sean the Bookonaut on 24 August 2011 at 4:53 pm

    I have a pair of holeproof explorers that are 20 years old this year.

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