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Sock Scrap Swap

October 9, 2005

Hi there Socktoberfesters! Wanna see in my sock drawer? Click on the picture for a better look:

You can see lots of rolled up store bought socks, a few pairs of handknit socks, and many, many shriveled up skeins of half-used sock yarn. Does anyone else have this problem?

I have all sorts of ideas on how to use up those sock leftovers. I could make little kiddie socks. I could knit them together into crazy monster socks. Some skeins have enough left over that by adding a heel and toe in a contrasting color I could have a quite classy pair of socks. I could use the leftovers to add stripes to a pair of socks, or I could even follow a pattern that calls for just a bit of a contrasting color.

But I don’t. I am bored with these yarns. Not that they are boring yarns, but I have already knit with them. I have already seen how the patterns knit up, I have already felt how they hug my feet. I like them all, but I am greedy to try out something new rather than revisiting something old. I look at this pile of leftovers, and I would never, never, throw them away. But really, despite the possibilities, I’m probably never going to get around to knitting these into anything.

And then Socktoberfest came along (thanks Lolly!). And as anyone who’s spent time in Wisconsin knows, the suffex -toberfest translates into drinking and festivities. Due to federal laws restricting the shipment of alcohol over state lines I had to scrap my first idea for a festivity: a send-me-your-favorite-local-brew swap. But as there are very few restrictions on the shipment of sock yarn, I figure the next best thing to getting a beer in the mail would be getting sock yarn in the mail.

So here’s what I’m thinking. I’ve got odds and ends of sock yarn that I am a bit bored with. You’ve got odds and ends of sock yarn that you are a bit bored with. Let’s swap.

Gather together about 100 grams of yarn. Usually two 50 gram skeins will make one pair of socks, so you’ll be sending enough total yarn for the recipiant to make a full pair. But the yarns don’t necessarily have to go together–your pal might decide to make your bits into one crazy pair of socks, or they might decide to suppliment with some coordinating yarn to make several pairs. But let’s say 100 grams for equality’s sake. The yarn can be any fiber, any price, any color, solid or patterned or whatever. The only requirement is that it is leftover from making socks!

If you’ve got labels, send them along. If not, try to write down the fiber and washing instructions for each yarn. That is good stuff to know. Then drop the mix into a big envelope and send it off!

This is a strictly stash swap. No buying extra, no giving up any full skeins of yarn, no worrying about finding the perfect yarn that matches your pal’s blog’s color scheme. The fun is in the randomness… the possibility that you might get Koigu or you might get Lion Brand or you might get a little bit of each. You might get a color you absolutely love and cannot wait to knit up, you might get to try out a little bit of a new yarn before you commit to buying a new skein, or you might end up dropping the yarn back into your stash to sit there.

But the leftovers you’ve already got are sitting around in your stash anyway, so what do you have to lose?

Wanna play along? Since you’ve already got the goods, the turn around on this swap is going to be quick. Sign up by next Tuesday (October 18). I’ll give out names on Wednesday the 19th, and you send out your package on or before Monday the 24th. Hopefully everyone sending domestically will get a new little sampling of sock yarn by the end of October.

So, e-mail me at caideey at yahoo dot com (yes, the e-mail is pronounced “katie”, no, I do not use that spelling anywhere else except e-mail) with this info:
Your name and address.
Your e-mail.
Your blog address.
Are you willing to ship outside the US? If you are already outside the US, are there limits on where you are willing to send?

Questions? Ideas to make this run smoothly? E-mail or ask here.

And if you can figure out how to smuggle a bottle of your local brew into the package without the feds noticing, more power to you.

  1. October 9, 2005 7:51 pm

    GREAT IDEA! I love this–I will put it on the Socktoberfest site in tomorrow morning’s update too!

  2. October 10, 2005 9:41 am

    Yay! Swap. I’m in–email to follow.

  3. October 11, 2005 6:48 am

    I’m in! E-mail on its way. Tremendous inspiration.

  4. Minh permalink
    October 14, 2005 8:36 am

    Too bad I have only knitted two pairs of socks, I don’t have enough scrap yarn to join in… Sniff… Hmmmm, is there a way to add sportweight yarn to make it work?

  5. October 16, 2005 9:31 am

    Emailed you1 Great idea! I love scrap yarn & scrap socks but still, you always end up w/ even more leftovers!

  6. October 29, 2005 1:24 am

    Aaargh! I can’t believe I missed this. It would’ve been fun, and inspiring, too. Oh well, that’s what I get for getting a couple weeks behind in replying to my comments! I’ll have to just be satisfied with sipping on our local ales and checking out what gets swapped as well as what everyone does with their “new” yarn.

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