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Something about Sockyarns

A new pattern designed with Maniototo Sockyarn was published recently by Rebecca Newman. The pattern is called “Love of Vanilla Socks” and is available on Ravelry.

It comes in sizes for the whole family, and I have just finished my first pair. Therefore this is the perfect time to write something about sock yarns and their use.

it is great to receive feedback about our yarns. Feedback helps us know how knitters are using the yarns and we can do a better job of marketing them. In the last week I’ve received two items of feedback about Maniototo Sockyarn. One wearer wore holes in her socks in what she considered to be a short time. The other person found that her socks shrank and felted when they went through the washing machine – (must have been a hot wash). She blamed herself, but it was a good reminder.

Maniototo Sock is a beautiful yarn for socks. It is a high twist worsted spun yarn and contains 15% nylon for some extra strength.  I have four pairs knitted with it and wear them regularly.

Trevor (Mr Maniototo) has one pair.

The socks feel wonderful on our feet and so far have worn well – BUT – we do not thrash these socks. We do not wear them in gumboots or work shoes or wear them with sneakers to go for a run. Trevor wears his for “best”, and I pretty much do the same.  A lot of work goes into hand knitting a pair of socks, especially with a unique, hand dyed yarn, so we treat them as special and a bit luxurious.

Maniototo Sockyarn is not chemically treated for superwashability. Therefore the fibre does not have the type of chemical coating that makes it very hardy, and suitable to be machine washed. The socks are likely to rub a bit where there is friction with a shoe, but this makes it thicker on those areas.

If you need a sockyarn that is super hard wearing, use one that is superwash treated. The coating on the fibre will make it less vulnerable to friction. I have socks made with these yarns, but I do prefer the feel of the non- superwash Maniototo Sockyarn, and I treat it with more care.

Washing hand knitted socks.

I rarely need to wash the socks, but when I do, this is the process to follow.

  1. Fill a bucket with warm water and add a small squeeze of lemon dishwashing liquid. Submerge the socks and leave them for half an hour. DO NOT agitate them and do not run water from the tap directly on to them.
  2. If the water is very dirty, squeeze the socks and rinse in water that is the same temperature
  3. Remove the socks. Squeeze out water, roll them in a towel. Stand on the towel to remove as much water as possible.
  4. Pat the socks out flat. I use a blocking board. Leave them to dry. They will be as good as new again

Sockyarn for shawls

I have two shawls made with Maniototo Sockyarn, and I love them both. One was a test knit for Renee Callahan, a designer based in London. It is the “Iara shawl”.

The other is Truly Myrtles “Dirty Lace Shawl”, a long rectangle with panels of lace in four different colours.

You can wrap it around yourself or let it drape gracefully. The slight nylon content gives these shawls a feathery lightness, and the twist of the worsted spun yarn allows the lovely drape you want in an elegant shawl.

Sockyarn for Garments

My friend Cherie has made a Timely Cardigan with Maniototo Sockyarn. I’m looking forward to seeing the finished project.

If you have purchased Maniototo Sockyarn, thank you and I hope you enjoy it.


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