Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Commercial socks

About four years ago I bought a dozen sneaker liners from an online retailer - you know the type - cheap, comfortable enough with a short row toes and a seam across the top of the foot.. 
 Shortly after that I started knitting my own socks, and for the last three years have worn handknit socks except when I'm riding or running and then I've been wearing these sneaker liners, which did the job. 

They are starting to wear out, which is why I started the sneaker liner project, the aim of which was to replace my commercial sneaker liners with handknit ones, as they wore out. In January this year I started running. As the year has progressed I've started increasing my distances and handknit socks are not ideal to run in - or, to be accurate, handknit socks in 4ply are not ideal for long distance running. I think if I knit them in laceweight or cobweb, on appropriate sized needles, that would do the job nicely. But I thought I would be like other people, and buy my running shocks from a shop. I started with some Nike Dry Fit Socks (3 for $25) .
 
They were fine, but I discovered that they were too low cut for my latest sneakers. Unfortunately I found this out at kilometre ten of a 19 km training run. I didn't get a blister, but I did bleed on my brand new shoes. Then I bough some 2XU socks - again from the factory outlet, They seemed fine in training. But look at the shape of the toe.

 Even in the picture from their website you can see there is extra fabric at the toe . Will it surprise you when I tell you that at kilometre 19 of a half marathon that excess fabric started to rub? I got a blood blister. I won't share photos because my feet are gross and some of you have delicate stomachs. 

Finally I bought a pair of Nike ankle high dry fit socks (1 for $25)  They are somewhat better, but if you look at the picture you can see they still have seams across the toe and a whole lot of -in my opinion- unnecessary texture. 
 
All three of these socks have seams and ill fitting short row heels.  I'm a handknitter and I know there is a better way. Has the idea of seamless socks never occurred to the designers of these commercially produced socks? Maybe a different style of heel? I understand that it might cost more to do it right, but I'm paying a premium for what I originally presumed to be a premium product. 
So, back to the plan of knitting these out of cobwed yarn. All I have to do now is source some 0.25 mm double pointed needles.

1 comment:

  1. I wish you could see the horror on my face right now! I don't know whether it's the blood blister, the idea of running a marathon or the notion of 0.25mm needles that is the scariest, but one this is for sure, you are a braver woman than I!!

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