Socks: A Story Of Not Getting Gauge

[ravelry]

I’ve blown out the heels in 4 pairs of socks since the weather turned colder this season, and so I have been very determined to make myself some socks this year. Sadly, those feet in that picture are not mine. You see, I knitted up the toes of these socks and measured them for gauge, deciding at once that I would dig out my copy of “New Pathways for Sock Knitters” and make another pair of the Simple Coriolis socks. (The pair I made back in ’08 had been my favorites until the heels blew out.) I measured, I thought, carefully, and knitted away, faithfully following the charts which Cat provides in the book. When the socks were looking rather a bit large, I told myself that it was because Cat likes her socks to be roomy and comfortable and so didn’t build any negative ease into her calculations. I told myself that this was no big deal because, after all, the old pair fit me fine and I loved them. I knitted through the increases and made the heels and about a half an inch of the leg before I decided that they were looking “a little” long and that I should probably try them on.

They were a good 4 inches longer than my feet.

At first I couldn’t figure out what had gone wrong. I mean, I followed all the directions! But then a thought occurred to me and I took out my measuring tape. Sure enough, my gauge was off by half a stitch. HALF! But that half stitch meant the difference between my size and ginormo size.

I was disappointed, yes, but luckily socks are like hats: if they don’t fit me, they will fit someone somewhere. Even better, when I had my husband try them on, they fit him as though I had him in mind when I cast them on. Which was good, because I didn’t want to frog all of that knitting. And there was a lot of knitting. Did I tell you his feet are size 13?