A Sheepish Little Blog.

Wool and whimsy in the frozen North.

Free April 10, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — knitbytes @ 10:10 pm
Tags: , , ,

I finished the swap socks at exactly 11am this morning.

socks done

They fit me nicely, though they’re a little bit hard to pull over my heel. Hopefully it won’t be a problem. It’s just that the leg pattern itself is not stretchy at all, but if you scrunch it up and pull it on that way, it works just fine.

In any case, they’re done. These socks were a strange journey… one of those projects you start out liking just fine, and something snaps in the middle of it and suddenly the project is the bane of your existance and you want nothing more than to either be done with it, or hurl it onto a burning pyre.

To sum up what I think of the two at once magic loop technique:


  • Having both socks done at once is the most obvious benefit, and is wonderful. It made the project feel much faster.
  • There’s no guesstimating  when it comes to length– since you knit them at the same time, both socks are identical in both foot and leg length, as well as pattern repeat numbers.
  • No forgetting what you did from one sock to the next- if you altered that gusset on the first one, you’ll have also done it on the second. No need for pattern notes unless you plan to knit the same pattern again.
  • You can try on the socks as you go, assuming they’re for you, or someone with the same size of feet as you have.
  • Because you’re using a long circular needle, you don’t have to worry about unwieldy dpns or dropping/losing a needle.


  • If you screw up on anything major, you don’t just have to pull it out once… you have to pull it out on both socks. This is big, for me, but not a deal-breaker. It just means I have to do what I’ve learned time and time again to do, yet still ignore… LISTEN TO MY GUT. If the gut says the socks are too short, rip out the gusset and add more to the foot! The gut is almost always right!
  • Progress can seem slow at times since you’re alternating from one sock to the other. However, when you hit that heel and realize you’re half done- not with one sock, but with the PAIR- you’ll see how much faster it can seem.

I will most definitely be using this technique a lot. I finished the socks in about half of my normal time, even with the four days of no knitting due to the flu! Normally I hit a wall about 1/3 into my second sock where I’m dead sick of it and just want to be done… I put the socks down and it takes at least an extra week. With these, since I didn’t hit the dead sick of it stage until I was already into the leg on both socks, I didn’t hit the wall. I jumped over it and ran on to the finish line, because I could see it from where I was standing.

After I finished the socks, I pretty much abandoned knitting for the rest of the day. My hands needed a rest anyway, and Janelle needed company while she did homework. I’m not really sure what I’ll work on next. I may wake up tomorrow knowing what I want to do, but I have so many things going right now I don’t know where to start, plus I have that new sock book calling my name with siren song. We’ll have to see how long I can resist. I already have a skein of Malabrigo sock wound into two equal balls…


One Response to “Free”

  1. Rose Says:

    I think I attempted the magic loop once and it was just that..an attempt. I just couldn’t figure it out and it was way too complicated using two circulars at once. (That’s the magic part right?)

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