Here are my answers for the Socktoberfest history questions:
1. When did you start making socks? Did you teach yourself or were you taught by a friend or relative? or in a class?
I started making socks after being inspired by seeing a purple pair knit by Carrieoke. She used the free pattern available on Bonne Marie's blog, and so I did the same. I taught myself! I have also learned a great deal from the Sensational Knitted Socks book.
2. What was your first pair? How have they "held up" over time?
My first *pair* ever finished was this one, made with some superwash self-patterning yarn purchased at the Haus of Yarn in Nashville.
I haven't really worn them that much (though I am wearing them today), because they are honestly a little bit hard to pull on!! They've held up fairly well over time...they're a bit fuzzy in the expected areas.
3. What would you have done differently?
Those socks were knit on size 1s (addis), and instead of casting on 68 stitches, I would probably have cast on 72, or gone up to a size 2. These are very thick socks, and again, difficult to get on.
4. What yarns have you particularly enjoyed?
I am a sock yarn whore. There really aren't too many I don't like, but I love Fleece Artist merino, Lorna's Laces shepherd sock, Mountain Colors Bearfoot, Socks That Rock, Sweet Georgia, All Things Heather, Black Bunny Fiber Arts, Regia, Great Adirondacks, and Schaeffer Anne. Though the colors are marvelous and I keep buying it, I'm not 100% sold on Koigu for socks, and was not terribly impressed with the colors I got with Kroy. I also think Opal is overrated (it feels like straw to me sometimes, and I'm over the patterning, I think).
5. Do you like to crochet your socks? or knit them on DPNs, 2 circulars, or using the Magic Loop method?
I've tried everything except crochet, I think. I'm not a huge fan of DPNs, but I like a 12" addi circular, an addi or INOX circular for Magic Loop, and 2 24" addis for the 2 circulars method. I also have a few 12" pairs of Clovers and Balenes (made by Boye?) in size 3 for sport weight yarns that are fun to use, as well. I sorted through my needles the other day, and I officially have too many, I think. One day I will run out of yarn to put on them, and then I'll have to go out and buy more. What a sad day that will be...NOT.
6. Which kind of heel do you prefer? (flap? or short-row?)
I just tried a short-row heel the other day, and it was not as scary as I thought it might be, and it looks cool as shit. I haven't tried on a sock with a short-row heel yet, so I'll reserve judgement until then. Normally, I make a flap heel, with a garter ridge edge.
7. How many pairs have you made?
Pairs? Well, I just finished the 3rd pair, made with All Things Heather sport weight. I have yet to post pictures, but I will eventually. I have a terrible, terrible case of SSS, and hope to finish more complete pairs, instead of single socks, as a part of Socktoberfest.