What is the best yarn for quick socks?

For the last two days I have been making a pair of socks for my daughter, and it finally clicked why I don’t make more socks while I really enjoy wearing them – I’ve mostly used traditional thin sock yarn and tiny needles. So it took me a long time to finish a pair, and the effort invested didn’t seem worth it – it takes me about as long to finish a whole sweater.

As my girl asked to look at the stash, she chose a lovely pink-lilac skein. Is was given to me in a swap, and I don’t have the label anymore, so I have no clue what exacly it is, but judging the thickness, I chose 3.25mm (US 3) size needles – I usually use 2-2.5mm for socks – and I am just thrilled how much quicker they go. I was done with the first sock in two days! So here is what I have realized is true for me:

The best sock yarn for me meets the following criteria: it is a machine washable wool/nylon blend as this gives the best comfort and durability, it is 1.5-2 thicker that the the classic 4-ply sock wool (so DK or worsted, around 120m/50g, knitting up on 3.25-4mm needles), and – for the time being – it is in the staple/affordable price range. By the way, I personally do not mind thicker socks, as I live in a warm climate, so I do not wear them with shoes, I wear them at home in winter instead of slippers.

How did I look for such yarn

When I had my bright idea, I immediately started looking for what is available to meet these criteria, as by then I already have had a new idea – now that I know how make socks quickly, I could make several pairs for Christmas gifts this year!

First, I started looking at my regular go-to stores and bummer – none of them carried what I needed. Then I just tried googling, and nothing interesting came up either.

Finally I realized that I could have a look on Ravelry. It was a longish and tedious process, but I found what I needed! What I did was filtering the yarn search to include yarns from 2 fibers in DK or Worsted weight, that had wool AND nylon listed as inlcuded in the blend, I exluded discontinued yarns, and yarns without a photo. The search still came up with about 1000 results. I have to admit, I didn’t go though all of them, once I found a few options that I liked, I stopped.

Which sock yarns I have selected

So, apart from weight and fiber, I also needed to find sock yarn options that are not expensive and that I can easily get in France, with reasonable shipping costs. For the first result page, I googled every yarn in the list. As I moved further and started getting tired, I skipped the ones that were either American or sounded like expensive indy brands (I hope one day will come and I will be able to indulge in those beauties).

So here is what I have pinned so far. Please note that this purely my personal preference without any affiliation to brands or stores. Moreover, I have not tried a single one of them, so I cannot vouch for quality. I will be sure to post my opinions though when/if I go through with the plan.

Novita nalle

Available to order in France, not expensive ,perfect weight and composition. Drawback – the colours available to order are sooo boring…

novita 7 veljesta

This one is slightly thicker, so I really want to try it, too see if it’s comfortable or too thick. The colours available are much more attaractive, and the selection is definitely larger. I might get a skein.

Schachenmayr regia 6 fils

I have seen on Ravelry that Regia also comes in 8-ply weight, which would be perfect. But I did not find it easily available in France. 6-ply is still worth a try, and there it is available in solids and in self patterning colours which I have always wanted to try. It’s on a more expensive side though, so it probably won’t be mi first choice.

Opal 6-ply

This one has amazed me by all the different colours available, solid and variegated. I would have to order it from abroad, but I found a supplier with resonable shipping rates, which are comparable to shipping from France

novita moomin muumitalo

This is probably the yarn that has gotten me the most excited! I love all things Moomin to start with! My favourite childhood book. It’s the right weight (on the thicker side) and composition, and I absolutely fell in love with colours. They are so fresh, and bright and cheerful. It is not available in France, but I have located a seller in UK. I have never heard of them before. Once again, the shipping cost is the same as local, so I might give it ago and try….

And what about you? Have you tried any of these? Can you recommend some other options? What’s your preferred sock yarn?

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