Tuesday, November 30, 2010

REVIEW: Sock Yarn One-Skein Wonders: 101 Patterns That Go Way Beyond Socks!

Sock Yarn One-Skein Wonders: 101 Patterns That Go Way Beyond Socks!
by Judith Durant
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Storey Publishing (November 13, 2010)


I think that nearly every knitter I know has an obsession with sock yarn.  Whether it's because you actually love to knit socks, you're mesmerized by the beautiful hand-dyed colorways or simply because it's so easy to accumulate (after all, what's one more skein of yarn, right?)... chances are you've got quite a few hanks of sock yarn at home, as do I.  

Fortunately for those of us who claim know that "sock yarn doesn't count as stash," Judith Durant is back with the latest edition to her wonderful One-Skein Wonders series, Sock Yarn One-Skein Wonders: 101 Patterns That Go Way Beyond Socks!

As yarn shops are devoting more and more space to sock yarns and independent dyers across the nation work their magic, our stashes are growing faster than we can say "cashmere socks!"  The possibilities of sock yarn seem endless and best of all, it's relatively inexpensive to bring a hank home here and there.  After all, you only need just one skein.  As those skeins continue to pile up, you've probably decided to explore your options of just what else you can knit with sock yarn... right?  Shawls, scarfs, fingerless mitts, baby hats -- you know you've reached for sock yarn to knit one recently! 

The patterns Judith Durant has chosen for Sock Yarn One-Skein Wonders include baby clothes, mittens, scarves, hats, jewelry, cozies, bags, a dog sweater, a lamp shade and yes, even a few pairs of socks!  As with the past One-Skein Wonders books, all of the patterns were contributed by yarn shops and designers throughout North America. Knitters of every skill level will quickly find favorites... some knit up in fewer than three hours, others make creative use of sock yarn leftovers, and several make heirloom-worthy gifts.

Sock Yarn One-Skein Wonders features an updated, easy-to-browse layout.  The full color photos are now placed with the pattern instructions, which are easy to follow. The patterns have been categorized into 4 sections: From Head to Toe (and Fingers, Too), It's a Wrap!, Knits for Kids and Bag It and More. 

This is a must add book to any sock yarn hoarder's collection!  Don't be shy... you know that's you!  Put Sock Yarn One-Skein Wonders on your holiday wish list or scroll down to find out how you can win a copy!

I had the pleasure of interviewing Gina House, who designed The Ericka Scarf for Sock Yarn One-Skein Wonders. I'm proud to call Gina a friend and honored to knit her designs!

Lapdog Creations: Tell us about the inspiration behind your gorgeous pattern, The Ericka Scarf.

Gina: The inspiration for this scarf came about from boredom, actually. I was fiddling around with the Noro Kureyon sock yarn and one of Barbara Walker's stitch pattern books one day when I was totally sick of what I was knitting. I loved the look of the sock yarn, but didn't think I wanted to make socks. When I saw an interesting mesh pattern in the book, I thought, "Hey, this combination might look amazing together!" And I thought it did ;)

Lapdog Creations: Do you tend to seek out one-skein patterns?

Gina: It's funny - I don't usually look for one-skein patterns for my own knitting (and, in fact, I tend to love patterns that use WAY more luxurious yarn than I can afford!), but I almost always use only one (or very few) skeins of yarn for my designs. I think it's because I love hearing about someone who knit one of my designs over a weekend and say, "That was so quick and fun. I love instant gratification projects!" So, I try to use really great, yummy yarns in small amounts for the accessories I design.

Lapdog Creations: OK, someone just gave you a gorgeous skein of hand-dyed sock yarn that you absolutely can NOT wait to cast on with... What type of pattern do you reach for first - socks or something else?

Gina: Hmmm...that's a good question! I seem to have grown out of my sock-knitting-frenzy phase and now I'm into my knitting-something-cozy-and-comfortable phase. If I had a gorgeous skein of hand-dyed sock yarn, I would probably start either a simple lace shawl design (to show off the awesome colors) or fingerless mitts. I also have to admit that I tend to horde my hand-dyed sock yarns. I have a number of skeins of Blue Moon Fiber Arts "Socks that Rock," Sereknity "Perfect" and Spunky Eclectic sock yarn that I just can't get myself to unskein. I have a mini-shrine (as one of my friends calls it) to this kind of lovely yarn and I just look at it and smile. Crazy, huh?

Lapdog Creations: Is there anything that you would like to add about your pattern, the book or sock yarn in general?
Gina: I would have to say that, although I've loved all of the One-Skein Wonders books, this is my absolute favorite - and not just because my pattern is in it! LOL! This book has a new layout that I really like and the full color pages make this book very attractive. It's also convenient that every single pattern uses the same weight yarn! Barely any thinking involved at all.
I've looked through the book almost every day since I've gotten it and I'm constantly finding new projects that I want to start. Such adorable patterns in here! I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to talk to Judith Durant and some of the other designers from the book at a book signing in Nashua, NH and I must say that I'm thrilled to have my pattern in a book with such talent.
Thank you Gina for taking the time to chat about everyone's favorite obsession, sock yarn!  For those who want to learn more about Mrs. House, jump back to my September, 2009 interview and review of The Joy of Socks book and be sure to check out Gina's wonderful patterns on Ravelry or via her blog!

GIVEAWAY! How would you like to win your very own copy of Sock Yarn One-Skein Wonders: 101 Patterns That Go Way Beyond Socks!? To enter:
1) Follow Lapdog Creations publicly (see "Followers" on the right hand side bar).
2) Leave a comment here telling me what your all time favorite sock yarn is and why!

To get an extra entry, send your friends here to enter and be sure to have them mention your name.... blog, Tweet, Facebook and text away
Winner will be selected by random number generator and must be a public follower of Lapdog Creations in order to win.
Deadline for entries is Tuesday, December 7 at midnight.


Gina House said...

This was a super review! Yay!! (Thanks so much for interviewing me, Nic) : D

gypsyknits said...

Nice review. I've seen the book in person and it's AWESOME! On my Christmas wish list for certain.

My favorite sock yarn...mmm...I'm a sock yarn stash nut. But I'd have to say Creatively Dyed is my new fave right now although there are quite a few on my fave list ;).

gMarie said...

Very nice review. Hmmm - all time favorite sock yarn - I think it has to be ShiBuiKnits. Their hand-dyed colors are fabulous and they semi-solids, very deep and rich. But really - I love just about anything with a good twist! g

WonderWhyGal said...

Great interview! I have such an obsession for socks (although I haven't started knitting them...yet) that I started trading my husband's venison for knitted socks. Yeah, my obsession is that bad. He wasn't pleased when I told him I was giving away his prized venison so that I could have knitted socks. Don't worry, I am ready to finally knit them starting after the holidays.

My favorite yarn...Studio June Hand Dyed Yarn from right here in Michigan. I love her colors and the feel of her yarn. I also bought the Yarns On Stage "kit" and will have plenty of sock yarns to try to decide what I like the best.

Sue said...

I've been looking and drooling over the beautiful sock yarns available, but I haven't bought any because I don't knit socks. This might give me some ideas on other things to make so I can jump in and start adding those gorgeous yarns to my stash.

Dianne said...

I think I will have to ask Santa for that book! My fave sock yarn? Hard to pin down. It might be Opal---nice and thin, and lovely color changes. I haven't tried very many indie dyers' sock yarns. Must branch out...

SissySees said...

It's on my Christmas list! My favorite sock yarn varies with what I'm knitting. If I'm actually doing socks, I want superwash, not too soft but with "sproing". If I'm knitting a shawl or scarf, I want SOFT.

Kathy R said...

Great review! My personal favorite sock yarn is Malabrigo Sock. I made a shawl out of it earlier this fall and I love it. I'm making another (different design) right now with the yarn in the Abril colorway as a gift. It's wonderful to work with.

sandrajager said...

Great review! And the book is fabulous too.

km said...

I just love sock yarn...it's hard to pick a favorite. I loved SocksThatRock. I loved Jitterbug. I think I prefer yarn from Indie dyers...I love my Alabama Fiber Dreams yarn!

I saw this contest on Chan's blog.

Anonymous said...

I have to say my favorite sock yarn is from an indie dyer near me. Wullenstudio Sock yarn. She has blanks you can buy but her colors are so rich! And the yarn is soft and comfy.

Scrabblequeen said...

Guilty as charged...I do buy more sock yarn than I can ever hope to knit socks with. My favorite for socks, I think, is still my first love, Lorna's Laces Shepherd sock. So soft, so pretty, so durable! I need this book!

Bonnie O. said...

Mine is a sentimental favorite - Lorna's Laces Shepherd sock yarn.

Right after I learned to knit, I decided to make a pair of socks so I went out and spent $20 on two skeins of the yarn, $10 on needles and $60 on a class to teach me. Then I left the yarn and needles on an airplane so I had to repurchase the supplies. So overall, my first pair of socks cost about $100!

Dorothy said...

My favorite sock yarn (so far, there are many I haven't tried yet) for color came from a now defunct Etsy shop. Otherwise, I like the way Cascade Heritage washes.

Amy said...

I am following your blog. I love Miss Babs sock yarn. It knits up and holds up well. The colors are awesome!

avennett AT verizon DOT net

Connie said...

I have looked hard and long(ingly) at the Sock Yarn One Skein Wonders book and would love to win one. I'm one of the few knitters who has yet to make her first pair of socks, so this would be a great addition to my library to use up some stash (or find a reason to buy more).
Thanks for the chance.

Bretta said...

Neat book and review! I am a fairly new knitter and have yet to determine a favorite sock yarn, but I'm having fun trying!

pip said...

great review thanks :) Favourite sock yarn?... that's hard!! Currently I'm eagerly awaiting some Regia Jazz; the design line by Erika Knight :)

KatieB said...

My favorite sock yarn really isn't for socks but when I tried it I was pleasantly surprised. The yarn is Elsbeth Lavold's Silky Wool. I just adore it for all kinds of knitting so when I was going to tackle a special pair of socks last year and had a bunch of Silky Wool in my stash, though, why not? It's very durable because of the twist and the nylon and silk content, and I've had trouble knitting firm enough fabric with other sock yarns. Turned out great.

Maybe I am just too hard on my socks, but all my other pairs sprout holes within a year. Not so the Silky Wool.

Anita said...

Here I am! :) Catching up again... Great review! I think I might want that book, I know I have plenty of sock yarn in my stash & can't seem to knit any socks. LOL

PattyW said...

My all time favorite sock yarn has to be Footnotes by Fiber Optic Yarns. It is dyed by Kimber Baldwin and it is so soft and the colors are wonderful! I love the original "One Skein Wonder" and "Designer One Skein Wonder" books . This one with sock yarn is going on my wish list!

Dawn said...

Awesome! How to choose a favorite sock yarn? Fiberphiles, Wollmeise, Mama Llama....love sock yarn!

CeltChick said...

I have a favorite, just can't remember the name right now! It's 100% superwash merino, and I used it for caps for a baby, it was sooo soft & squishy.

Mrs. Laura Lane said...

I'm following.

To be honest, I've just started my first pair of socks.

I'm using Kroy Jacquard Denim. I like it so far.

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