Everyone is Getting Socks for Christmas

The sock bug has bit me. One minute I was totally fine, thinking about how I should really get around to starting my Rhinebeck sweater. Then one quick trip through the Maryland Sheep and Wool festival later I find myself surrounded by sock yarn.

It started with regret. At Rhinebeck I fell in love with some kettle dyed sock yarn by Into the Whirled. By the time I was ready to purchase it they were sold out of the colorway. No worries, I thought. I’ll just buy it online later. Friends, let me tell you: at no point in the last seven months has that colorway appeared on the website. I stalked every update. I hunted. I cruised the Ravelry forums for folks who might be offloading theirs. No luck.

As I entered the Maryland Sheep and Wool festival I had one goal in mind: get my hands on this yarn. With a budget of $100 I knew I had to stay focused. It is very, very easy to spend $100 at a fiber festival. It is not particularly difficult to spend $200. At least I didn’t buy a sheep, right? Imagine how many socks I could make if I had my own sheep!

When we reached the booth I was ready. I found my colorway, and a few others to go with it. I was under budget, and feeling very good about myself.

It was shortly after this moment that I made a huge mistake. I went back to a booth I’d lingered at earlier (The Fold, in case you were wondering). They had some Socks that Rock in a lovely pink and black colorway. I held it and said to a friend “I can’t decide if I should get this or not.” My friend looked at it and said “well the colorway is called Buffy, so you have to.”

It turns out that Blue Moon Fibers knows their audience very well, and released twelve Buffy themed colorways in honor of the 20th anniversary. I somehow managed to resist the urge to buy all of them.

Now I’m looking at sock patterns on Ravelry. I’m trying to keep it simple – I knit a pair of colorwork socks followed by cabled socks and refused to knit any socks for a while after that. Hermione’s Every Day Socks are about as fancy as I’m going to get this time around.

Socks are addictive. Sock yarn is an easy impluse buy. In many ways they are the perfect project: they’re portable, they’re fairly simple, they only take one skein of yarn, and people are always impressed you know how to make them. Buying a sweater quantity of yarn is a commitment. Buying a skein of sock yarn is like a fling. You can try something new without breaking the bank. And if it doesn’t work out like you’d hoped that’s fine, you won’t really see them once you put your shoes on anyway.

The Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival is an annual fiber festival at the Howard Country Fairgrounds in Maryland. Below are some of photos of the event found on Instagram (I was too busy buying yarn to take any pictures).


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