It is not easy to write this letter, but after all we've been through, you deserve the truth. I think our love affair is over. It's almost summer, Widdie, and I think I need my freedom to knit other socks.
It's not you. It's me. No one likes to hear this, I know, but really this time it is true. You are a wonderful sock pattern, one of the best! Your magic cast-on is brilliant, so much better than those crochet-hook provisional thingies. And you know that your toe-up heel flap is clever, well-fitting, attractive and easy to execute. You are great for variegated yarns that don't want to settle prettily into a pattern, and there is nothing like Widdershins to help a knitter use up all of a skein of sock yarn.
You have meant so much to me this year as I endeavored to develop my perfect simple sock. You really were it. Oh, I tried others, and they were fine, but when I met you, it was an instant connection. You fit my small foot perfectly and I memorized you instantly. You were even simple to convert to smaller sizes for the kids.
But, summer has me looking at other socks longingly. There are so many pretty designs out there, and I think I have some perfect sock yarn for some of them. Have you seen the Sidewinder socks that Nona has designed? Don't you think my Opal yarn would be perfect for that?
Lately, a lot of my bigger, non-sock projects have involved a lot of simple stockinette, so I have been looking to socks to provide a little patterned-interest for me. And I said I owe you the truth, and the truth is, I have met someone else. Her name is Nancy, and well, she isn't just a pattern. She's a designer. An author. A sock guru. I didn't mean for this to happen, but well, there was wine, and I bought all these new KnitPicks needles, and the next thing I knew, Nancy Bush and I were having a full-blown sock affair.
(L to R, Madder Ribbed Socks in TOFUtsies, Gentleman's Fancy Sock in Brooks Farm Acero, Child's First Sock in Tess Supersock & Baby, from Knitting Vintage Socks)
Yes. Most of her socks are cuff-down. I know, I know, toe-up is superior for finishing up sock yarn, but let's be honest! We both know I have really short legs and I don't like really long cuffs anyway! I always end up with lots of yarn left over. And I know that her patterns usually work best with solid yarns, but you know what, I am thinking about branching out into solids and semi-solids.
Don't look at me disapprovingly for having so many socks on the needles. I know you counted on me to be a monogamous sock knitter, but lately, I am just too excited to stick to just one pattern. Nancy just does that to me. And lots of other knitters do it. Some even celebrate it! And I had lunch with a couple of them who really encouraged me to move in this direction, and you know what, Megan and Ashley are right. It is time for me to spread my sock wings and fly in all directions.
You taught me so much about how to knit socks to fit my feet, but I think Nancy can move me to the next level, to teach me to tweak existing patterns for fit. You should see all the different heel flaps and toes she has to teach me! You don't want me to stagnate as a sock knitter, do you?
Look, it isn't forever. You are the perfect pattern for self-patterning yarns, and I always have room in my stash for self-patterning yarns. And whenever I need a simple sock, you know I will always, always reach for you.
We had a great run, and I think we are going out with a bang with these Vesper socks we made for me and Rosebud. That juicy bright Sweetwater colorway is perfect for your simple lines, and the stripes settled perfectly into your heel flap.
Vesper Superwash Merino & Nylon, Sweetwater colorway
I need my freedom, Widdershins, but I'll be back. I promise.