When Sock Yarns Go Bad

Remember these?

These Butterfly Bows socks were favourites from my Bust Out of The Box Sock Challenge last year. I love the pattern. I loved the yarn – Colinette Jitterbug. Here are those socks now:

Shrunken, felted shadows of their former selves. What happened? I’m not entirely sure. All I can guess is, the yarn isn’t as machine washable as it says it is.

I read or heard recently that most people use only one or two settings on their washing machine. This amazed me, since I use nearly all the twelve or so settings on mine, if you don’t also count that spin speed and temperature can be adjusted. It’s a front-loader so it’s much gentler on clothes than top-loaders. I wash my socks on a gentle cold cyle and have had no trouble until now.

I’ve only ever knit socks out of hand-wash yarn once. It drove me nuts having to wash them separately (not to mention how the dye stained one of my few successful sewing projects) so eventually I converted them into gloves and wristwarmers. And vowed never to knit non-machine washable socks again.

So much for that.

I have another ball of Colinette Jitterbug. I don’t have the courage to knit socks and hope it will be different, so it’s gone into my warp yarn stash.

Remember these?

Well, they’re okay. They’re knit from some Lisa Souza yarn that I bought assuming the yarn would be the same as the lovely, thick, smooshiness that I’d bought from the dyer some years before. It isn’t.

While winding the last of the skeins up yesterday I considered what to do with it. Warp yarn, perhaps? They do look really nice lined up together. What if I double the yarn, combinging it to make nine graduating colours? Doubled, it would make nice thick socks, just as I’d intended.

Aha! Sock yarns may go bad, but I can turn them around to the good sock side.

Well, except there’s nothing I can do about those Butterfly Bow socks now except toss them in the bin.

2 thoughts on “When Sock Yarns Go Bad

  1. ARGH! Shrinking felted socks. That sucks.

    You don’t have a niece or someone small who could use them as bedsocks?

  2. I’m going to throw them in a hot wash with the sheets and see if they turn into booties!

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