Tuesday, April 24, 2012


My previous post was all about patterned sock yarns, but a few years ago some yarn manufacturers came up with a new cool idea for getting colors and patterns onto hand knitted socks. White, undyed sock yarn was machine knit into a little scarf-like affair called a "sock flat" or "sock blank". It was then dyed into interesting patterns and colors at the factory, or you could buy it undyed and color it yourself any way you liked. Then the "flat" or "blank" was unraveled and re-knit into a pair of socks. What fun!

 The top photo shows a commercially dyed sock flat by Conjoined Creations, and the sock resulting from half of it. Truth be told, I was pretty disappointed. The colors on the flat were rich and lovely, but the dye didn't really penetrate deeply between those stitches. The resulting sock showed plenty of small white undyed flecks, and the colors seemed pale and washed out in comparison to the flat. The yarn was also stiff, inelastic, and scratchy, and not much fun to knit up.

 My next attempt was with an undyed sock flat. These are still available for sale, and can be purchased HERE.

The flat was fun and easy to dye up.

I unraveled, then wound one of the balls with reverse colors just for fun.

The resulting socks were (naturally) fraternal twins, but fun to knit up. The yarn was soft and pliant.

Sock flats were, for a few years, the only way to get long gradual color shifts onto socks. But ultimately I lost further interest in them because it seemed no matter how wild you made the patterns on the blanks, the results in the sock were stripes or flecks. Or flecky stripes, or stripey flecks. The flats were far prettier and more interesting than the socks!

If you would like my free generic pattern for all of the socks shown in these photos, go HERE.



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