My third and latest knitting project is this pair of Rye Socks from the Simple Collection by Tin Can Knits. In case you don’t know the series, it’s a collection of 10 free patterns aiming to build up your knitting skills from zero to… something higher than zero. You start off with a scarf or cowl, move onto a hat (I made the Barley Hat already) and then progress through socks and mittens to sweaters and intricate shawls. Of course, you can pick and choose whatever you like. The instructions are fabulous and the patterns appealing.
Anyway, I decided to make the Rye socks using double-pointed needles again. The pattern recommends using worsted size yarn, and I’m guessing this is because it’s a bit of an easier weight for beginners? Not sure, but it makes sense. I decided I should knit up a swatch really and ended up with the following dilemma:
In the end, I took advice from some sage instagrammers and tried swatching at a smaller needle size again. I was mostly concerned I would end up with crazy stiff socks, but the swatch seemed okay (if quite thick), so I just carried on like that: same yarn, same pattern, much smaller needles.
Being my first pair of socks, I learnt loads of news things and made plenty of mistakes. Often I didn’t notice them until much later on, so I just left them alone. You’ll see some (ahem) pattern variation, which accounts for most of the errors. My main error was that the socks are rather big. I did try them on as I went and thought it wasn’t a bad fit, but they’re definitely too loose. Since they’re thick, I was thinking of them more as house socks anyway though, so they’ll do just fine for that purpose. They’re certainly cosy! Edit: my husband just tried them on and they fit him perfectly! Early Christmas present then…
The design is a rib knit at the top to start and then stockinette stitch everywhere, apart from a row of garter stitches straight down the front. It’s a simple, but effective design and great for a novice like me!
I enjoyed doing the heel turns. I can see why they have a reputation, but I literally just followed the instructions to the letter and they turned out fine. It did seem a bit weird while doing it, but it worked! Yay!
Picking up the stitches after turning the heel took a little getting used to, as did the Kitchener Stitch at the end, but the instructions really are thorough – and there’s always YouTube if you need extra video help! I think I did look the Kitchener Stitch up for the first sock, but I’ll be blowed if I can remember which video I watched.
Clearly I need a fair bit of practice at these skills, but I really did enjoy working away on them while we were on vacation and I’m looking forward to getting started on another pair. This time I think I’ll use thinner sock yarn though, and see how I get on. I didn’t bother blocking since 1) I read it wasn’t too necessary with socks and 2) my yarn had acrylic in it anyway since I figured being able to wash them might be beneficial, so no point. Next time I… might…
Check out The Simple Collection series if you’re interested in trying yourself – it’s great!