View Full Version : Sock Block
07-08-2008, 08:31 AM
No, I'm not talking about the thing you put your socks on to block them. I'm talking about a mental block. My 34 year old stepdaughter has been helping us out by taking care of our sick dog during the day. I know she likes wool socks, so I thought I would knit up a few pairs of PRETTY wool socks for her to wear to work. I got her measurements and settled in with some discontinued Magic Stripes yarn, did a basketweave pattern on the leg, but made a huge mistake and had to frog them. About this time she asked what color I was making (blue/tan stripe) and said they would be good for hunting socks, down inside her boots! :noway: I have amassed a huge sock yarn stash of nice/pretty yarn for dress socks, casual socks, and just plain fun socks. She's going to take my hard work (about 2 weeks of it) and hide them in her boots for hunting! I can't do it. I can't even force myself. It's like knitting an aghan and having it end up as the dog's bed. I just can't do it. She has seen the socks I made for myself and tried them on, so she knows I'm not knitting socks to be hidden away!
07-08-2008, 09:00 AM
You want to make her a nice gift, right? Well, when knitting for someone else I find I need to step away and realise that even though they might not use the gift the way I want them to, I am still doing something nice for them and theoretically it's theirs after I give it to them and they can do whatever they like with it.
My DBF and his dad and brother and uncles etc. go hunting and I know that they cherish their hunting gear. It's important to keep them warm and comfortable while they're out there and wool socks do a great job at this. So maybe the fact that she wants to use them for hunting means a lot to her.
I just knit socks for the DBF's sister for her birthday and I know there's a chance she'll lose one or ruin one somehow or perhaps just never wear them. Does it matter? No, because they're hers now.
07-08-2008, 09:12 AM
She can buy hunting socks at Bass Pro Shop, just as she's been doing. When knitting for men, you go in knowing they're going to be dull and utlitarian. I guess I'll hunker down and make a hunting pair and a pretty pair and forget about it. I know she likes the socks I make. She went wild over them and said I should sell them for $30 a pair. I think it goes back to the thing of non knitters not having a full appreciation for what we do and how our heart is in every stitch. She could say she'll use them as dust mitts and it wouldn't bother me any more than the hunting does.
07-08-2008, 09:15 AM
I know she can buy them at Bass Pro, but if you make them they're special! If she likes your socks she knows how nice they are and she must think they'll be good for hunting. You should take it as a compliment.
07-08-2008, 09:16 AM
I tend to agree with knitgal. The girl obviously loves hunting, so make her a pair of hunting socks! You know that she will wear them. Then later make her a pair of girly socks and wrap them up really fancy. At least this way you know she is going to wear them and enjoy having them.
07-08-2008, 10:04 AM
I'm with Knitgal on this one.
Beauty and utility are not separate things. When your daughter is out in the cold and muck, a pair of thick wool socks are worth their weight in gold. They'll insulate her feet against the cold, protect them from boot blisters, and keep her toes toasty even if she gets water in her boots. That, to me, is beautiful. And if your daughter has actually asked for them, they'll make her happy. Even if nobody else sees them, she'll love them.
Take a look at the socks at highcountryknitwear.com , a Colorado company run by designer Pat Feeley. They're simple, elegant, and designed specifically to make feet feel good inside boots.
PS: You could always make her hunting socks in a pretty color that Bass Pro doesn't carry, or do them in a Fair Isle pattern for extra warmth.
07-08-2008, 10:41 AM
I have had great success OVER DYING magic stripes.
the blue/blue/tan/white/red (denim) Looks great over dyed a dark red or green (dark green)
the jelly bean? (blue/hot pink/red/lime green/white) over dyed a nice deep (but not really dark) blue? beautiful
you can over dye the skeins.. or wait and finish the socks..
take the scraps --use them as tests for what color to over dye.
i find its best to take a color already in the mix, and bring the other colors 'in line"
the jellybean socks, (seen here (http://golden-apples.blogspot.com/2007/07/blues.html)) became dark, and medium blue, with violet, blue violet, and dark teal..---
and unless you love the colors of the Lion Brand magic stripes (some are OK, but some were, i think hidious!) you can have a summer project overdying a few skeins!
07-08-2008, 10:49 AM
Let me further explain my concept here. She has plenty of hunting socks.
I have a problem with cold feet at work. Acrylics make my feet sweat and then colder. So I went in search at the stores for dressy wool socks that I could wear with my slacks in the office. Retailers in Georgia don't think women need such an item, so there's none to be found. I learned to knit them or continue to suffer from cold feet. My stepdaughter is a teacher and this year will be teaching in two schools and out in the cold off and on during the day to commute back and forth between them. I thought she would benefit from dress wool socks as I have. Hunting socks was the furtherest thing from my mind. My idea was to make something special that she couldn't get any other way.
07-08-2008, 10:51 AM
Wearing pretty sock inside of boots is like wearing pretty undergarments. You know they are pretty, you are the one who sees them and they make you feel feminine. So I would knit her some pretty hunting socks.
07-08-2008, 11:02 AM
Sorry SandraS - I have to agree with everyone else...I'll bet that she can't buy pretty hunting socks at Bass Pro.
07-08-2008, 12:49 PM
Does she really put on her socks just before she puts on her boots to go out the door? She doesn't get dressed first -- socks included -- and then finish getting ready and the put her boots on last? And take them off first at the end of the day? (I can't imagine clomping around the house in hunting boots!)
I don't think that they would always be hidden where SHE can't see them.
I understand that this was not your original intention when you first thought of making the socks; it may be that she knows she would not wear them to work and that it would be pointless for you to make them for her, (I know I'm VERY picky about my work socks; not so much about the socks I wear any other time), while hunting socks would get a lot of use, as well as pleasure in having comfortable feet. :)
(I also think that hunting by nature is very uncomfortable and having luxurious socks would be a fun "dirty little secret." ;) )
I think that no matter what kind of socks you make, as long as they are something that she would wear, they will be something special that she can't get any other way. :thumbsup:
07-08-2008, 01:12 PM
I'm going to have to go with the others here. Even if they don't show to others she is going to love them while hunting. I don't know what the schools where your daughter teaches are like, but if they are anything like the old, drafty building I teach in, socks no matter how toasty aren't enough. For me to keep warm in my classroom (and I'm in North Texas, not like it's North Dakota cold here) while teaching I have to wear opaque cotton tights or even cuddleduds under just about everything I wear, and I'm not a cold natured person. So for me socks are an impractical clothing item for work. I'd go for the hunting socks.
07-09-2008, 09:52 AM
I think if the issue is putting a lot of work into a pretty basketweave pattern that will go unappreciated in hunting boots, and she's expressed that that is what she will use them for...I'd go for a more utilitarian hunting sock that's easier to knit and designed for that purpose.
I agree that many people don't realize the love and effort that goes into a handknit gift!
However, in turning it around, the gifts I love most are the ones given with no strings attached. I find it stressful to be given a gift that I'm expected to use in a certain way, particularly if another way would make the gift wonderful for me and the way the giver wants me to use it doesn't work for me.
Given the option, I'd just as soon not even have a gift given to me, if it's not give free of expectation. (Which is probably the rationale behind so many knitters refusing to give gifts to certain unappreciative people!)
07-09-2008, 10:07 AM
I think if the issue is putting a lot of work into a pretty basketweave pattern that will go unappreciated in hunting boots
Unappreciated by whom?
07-09-2008, 10:53 AM
Call me selfish, but knitting is all about my pleasure. It's about the only thing I do that's just mine. Making things that others appreciate gives me pleasure. I've reached a compromise in my mind over the hunting socks that she will like and I will enjoy knitting. I need a good pattern to keep me going and she wants warm hunting socks. So, I'm doing a spiral rib to make the project interesting and she will get socks she can wear hunting or with jeans. I'm also considering a short scarf or headband in the same yarn. I'm also making a pair in the high school colors for her to wear to football games. Now to find some superwash wool that's appropriate. All my sock yarn is wrong for hunting socks. It seems we can have a room full of stash, but any new project requires something we don't have!
I'm still a little disappointed that my original thought was rejected. Wool hunting socks can be bought while dress/casual wool socks for women can't.
07-09-2008, 11:16 AM
SandraS I really think you are missing the point. I understand what you are saying about the thought behind what you were going to make her. And the fact that you were trying to think of a way that she could use them shows the love that's going into them.
And I really think this is a time that it IS the thought that counts. But your idea and hers are different. One's not wrong or better, just different. There cold be many reasons that she would rather use them for hunting. But isn't it the fact that she WANTS to use them. I think she does know what you are putting into them by the fact that she wants to use them.
You said that making something for others that they will appreciate gives you pleasure. But I think you are missing that she DOES appreciate them.
07-09-2008, 12:00 PM
I don't believe I said she wouldn't appreciate them. And perhaps my original concept got lost in translation when I told her I wanted to knit some wool socks for her. She thinks of wool socks as hunting socks and doesn't realize they can be made with fingering weight yarn and attractive designs. But a non knitter will never fully appreciate or understand what goes into any knitted gift, nor do I expect they will. What she does understand is how much I appreciate her helping us with our sick dog and this is my way of thanking her. End of story.
07-09-2008, 12:19 PM
Well, you never know where she may end up wearing them - one day she may wear them hunting since they'll keep her feet so toasty warm - the next time she may wear them to the ball with her glass slippers - won't they look great and be shown off to all that night!!
07-09-2008, 12:56 PM
Once she puts on a pair of socks that were made to fit her, using her measurements, I just might end up making more socks than I bargained for. And not just for hunting!
07-09-2008, 01:07 PM
I think once she sees the socks you knitted for her she will see that the wool socks were not what she was thinking at first...even if she does still think that, then I think once she wears them she will see the difference and they will be wore more than for hunting socks...I always tell everyone once you try a knitted sock you won't go back to store bought socks :rofl:
07-09-2008, 01:15 PM
She tried on a pair I made for myself that were knitted out of Kroy 4 ply, so sort of on the thicker side. I wear them with dressy mules under my slacks. But I have some fingering weight she knows nothing about. And don't get me started on my wool/silk blends. ahhhhhh. She won't get any of that until she converts!
07-09-2008, 01:23 PM
I gave my sister the second or third pair of socks that I ever made. They were made of self striping wool and she said she intended to wear them to my nephew's hockey games to keep her feet warm. Nothing more has ever been said about them. This was about 3 years ago.
I began a pair of "Monkey Socks" in April that I intended for myself. When I was part way through knitting them I decided to give them to the same sister for her birthday. These were a little fancier than her first pair and I thought she could show them off. I gave them to her unwrapped 2 weeks ago. She hugged them to her face and gushed about new hand knit socks. She went on to tell me how special she feels when she wears the other socks I made her. She said she feels very loved, special and wanted when she wears those socks. They warm not only her feet but her heart and soul as well. This feeling comes from knowing someone put so much time and effort into making them.
She could wear these socks in hunting boots if she wanted and I would make her more socks. She does not knit but she sure understands and appreciates the work involved.
You may be underestimating how your intended recipient will appreciate the hand knit socks. If you knit for your own enjoyment then make her a nice pair of hunting socks and a fancier pair. You will double your enjoyment,
07-09-2008, 01:24 PM
:rofl: I'm sure she will...
Mom has made 2 pair of socks but she won't wear them...instead she has them hanging on her wall along with what I have made her...says they took to much time to be put in shoes (so I have the opposite problem sort of 'cause I made them for her to wear not to hang on sock blockers) :rofl:
07-09-2008, 02:10 PM
Oh, I've had that happen! An acrylic baby blanket was displayed and not used. The mom said it was too nice. It's acrylic! It will wash! But it hung over the side of the crib. She loved it too much to use it. At least it wasn't stored away for safe keeping.
A side note on my sock project....this is my STEPdaughter. She was raised by my DH w/o a mother, so there's always been some tension between us. She's a little competitive, sometimes jealous, and I have to tread lightly. We have a tendancy to push each other's buttons, and have to be respectful of each other in order to keep the peace. So, a hunting she will go.........with handmade socks.