I have always knit my socks tightly to produce a dense fabric (9 sts./inch). I've almost always cast on 72 stitches for a ribbed or plain sock. It was my default sock recipe: 2.25mm circ. / c.o. 72 sts. And I haven't worn a hole in a sock yet.
But I decided to loosen up and knit a pair of plain socks with a 68-stitch cast on. Still using a 2.25mm needle, these socks have a gauge of 7 sts./inch:
They are actually a bit roomy for me, so Bill has already claimed them for himself (yes, just since this morning -- he's been wearing them all afternoon).
Yarn is Scheepjes Invicta Coloris (wool/nylon; colour 1704); there is still quite a bit left (enough for ankle socks?) from the 100-gram ball. I love these colours. (I don't know if anyone will remember this, but when I was still in Taipei I saw a pair of socks made from this yarn on a blog and put out a call for someone to send me some. A kind Vancouver blogger indulged me. [Where did you go,
Paper Smiling Tiger Erica?])
It looks like I could go down to a 64-stitch cast on at this gauge. I just want to see if these socks -- which, at 7 sts./inch seem just a little bit loosey-goosey to me -- wear as well as the more densely knit socks I've made in the past. If they do wear as well, I'm going to stick with the looser gauge. Not only does the knitting go faster, but the yarn goes further. (Think of it: if I am knitting 8 fewer stitches per round than usual, I'm getting a whole extra freebie row after every eight rows!)
How do you knit your socks? Dense and sturdy? Or loosey-goosey? Do you wear them out? And then do you darn the holes?
Monday, February 06, 2006