Knitting Socks With Nine Inch Needles

Sock knitting with 9 in (23 cm) needles. Tricky but possible.

A while back when I was hemming and hawing about the merits of double pointed versus magic loop techniques for knitting socks, a reader cleverly pointed out that there is such a thing as 9 in (23 cm) needles for sock knitting. Knit them in the round and no complaining.

Theoretically.

I ordered a pair promptly thereafter (WEBS carries one single brand in size 2 (2.75 mm).) My first attempt at usage was casting on a pair of ladies socks with just 52 stitches. I didn’t get far. After a couple of rounds, it was apparent these little cuties would have to wait for a men’s socks knitting project with more stitches per round. The rounds were just too tight and stretched to work.

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Fast forward a few months and I have cast on my first pair of men’s sock. 64 stitches. The perfect amount for the super short needle. I am using the Hermione’s Everyday Sock pattern, free from Ravelry here and generally hoping the pattern will be male-suitable. (It is, right?) The yarn is the Plaid Blanket colorway from Madelinetosh Sock. It might be sacrilegious to say something mildly critical about one of my favorite yarn brands of all eternity, but the forest green shade is pooling in a particularly irritating way.

What is the point of a sock yarn that suffers from color pooling when you knit…socks!

Good grief.

I am tempted to abort because of the pooling, but I think I will just keep with it and have faith it turns out well in teh end. Determined, I am.

Or in denial. Hard to tell sometimes.

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From the first few rounds, I could tell it was going to be a rough go. My hands were cramping on the inside edges of my palms, and the knitting was slow going on those itty bitty points.

I wasn’t having that much fun.

But it was possible.

I mean, if I found myself unexpectedly stranded on a tropical island with a well stocked bar, an infinite supply of high quality sock yarn, and this one pair of ridiculously short and tiny sock needles, I would be grateful and plod away without (much) complaint.

However, I am not (presently) in this predicament, am I?

I told myself I had to at least make it through the 20 rounds of ribbing before I could make up my mind. For sure.

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I finished my 20 rounds dutifully, not unlike the way an Olympic athlete completes their jumping jacks (or whatever) at the beginning of their training sessions.

And then I switched.
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Magic loop, I am BAAAACCCCKKKK.

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And these little babies…? Well, into the hall closet they go.

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