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Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Quest for socks



I never appreciated my grandmother's knitting when I was a kid. She kept me in winter socks and mittens the whole time I was growing up. Today it would cost a fortune to have custom items knitted to fit me perfectly. She's long gone, but maybe she can still feel my gratitude.

Finding decent socks these days is nearly impossible. To be fair, my feet are size 14 and wide. There are specialty stores on-line that sell socks that might fit. However, socks are the sort of things you really want to handle first. How do they feel? Is the stretch just right? Are the proportions correct? Is the material too thick or too thing?

There are plenty of places that have off the shelf socks that claim to fit me. Here's the thing. When socks say they fit size 9 to 15 . . . they don't. Sure, it might be possible to stretch them onto your foot, but that's not a true fit. Even if you do get them on, they'll never be comfortable, plus they won't last. Socks are such a simple thing but bad socks ruin your day.

That's why, weather permitting, I wear sandals. No socks are required. In fact, it's considered a fashion disaster to wear them. (Okay, I've been informed that for many people, like diabetics, socks with sandals are doctor's orders.) For the rest of us, going without socks is normal. For casual around the house stuff and beach wear, flip flops are fine. If there's serious walking involved a good pair of hiking sandals do the job.

With winter on the way good socks are a necessity. Finally found a pair of decent boots. Now socks are required. Even tried wearing my hiking boots without socks. Not good. My feet stuck to the inserts in the boot and sucked them half out when the boots came off. In the short term, I stuck with socks that sorta kinda fit.

Maybe I'll give up on socks completely and learn how to use Russian foot wraps. If properly wrapped, they work better than socks. The Russian army only recently started to use socks . Actually, it's a skill that might be good to have.

-Sixbears

30 comments:

  1. I wear a 13 so I understand the sock dilemma. I have found wool 10-13 fit decent . Ex large tubes work but don't fit. http://www.basspro.com/RedHead-Pro-Team-16-Socks-with-Scent-Control-for-Men/product/10202470/?cmCat=CROSSSELL_PRODUCT_SB_VTB2
    The bass pro line of red head socks work best.

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    1. Thanks Gary! I knew if I put my problem out there people would have some good ideas.

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  2. never heard of foot wrapping. good skill to learn.

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    1. Seems like something worth experimenting with.

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  3. Watch Survival Russia to see how to wrap the "Russian" foot wrap.
    Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sK67zXzwngA

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  4. Never heard of the foot wrapping either. Interesting. I'm with you on the importance of good socks though. I am on my feet all day at work in steel toe boots, walking on either concrete or open steel grating and it is murder on my feet.
    I almost have a borderline sock fetish because of it.
    My feet sweat and cheap socks really suck when they start getting soggy and you still have six hours left in the day.
    When I find socks I like I buy a whole bunch of them and stash them for when they start needing replaced. I couldn't find my favorite brand once and it took me a long time to find a replacement.
    I would recommend you do the same when you finally find some you like.
    They don't take up that much room but they sure can make a difference in the quality of your day.

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    1. It's funny how someone will spend $20 on lunch which is gone in a day, but won't spend that on really quality socks that you wear all the time.

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  5. Hey SixBears. It's Joel from the blog Woodman's wanderings and rambling. I have not kept up with the blog, or commenting much the to my wife long battle with cancer. When I was a kid my mother had got me to learn knitting. I used to knit clothes for my two teddies then! Maybe you could learn how to knit soxes! It's not actualky too difficult when using circular knitting with four knitting needles. Good luck and keep warm. Joel in the UK.

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    1. Joel, good to hear from you. Miss your insight. Knitting a good skill for anybody to learn. Glad you stopped by.

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  6. If knitting doesn't work for you, you might check out Wigwam Men's El Pine socka. They are rag wool and the x-large according to the size chart will fit men's 14-16 shoe. My husband suffered burns from falling into scalding water on his feet and legs and these socks work for him. He sometimes wears a thin cotton sock as a liner and he wears them year round as they breathe and are comfortable. He says they cushion his feet. You can find them on amazon. We purchase the undyed natural color. They are expensive but last for years. You could try out just one pair to see if they work. They are nice when the winter comes on

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  7. Wigwam socks are made in the USA.

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    1. Another plus. Apparently, there's one city in China that now makes most of the world's socks.

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  8. Wiggys makes great
    lamilite socks, in bigger sizes.

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    1. Finding quality items in big sizes is often a royal pain in the backside. It's great to get all these leads on good socks.

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  9. I can do an "Israeli wrap" in a heartbeat, and I carry Israeli combat dressing on me at all times due to no clotting factor. The bandage turns into one giant "clot" that surgeons aren't trained in how to remove it without causing the patient to bleed out (so there's that piece of joy).

    Back in Indiana when I wore serious boots, socks are necessary due to the aggressive stitching to hold the leather together. No socks? Giant sliding blisters. Thick "gold toe" socks are too expensive, and the thinner cotton socks slide down. You can literally go to WALMART and fine thick knitted socks with a smoother "lint like" liner. Now, what else can I help with? LOL

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    1. I can find socks at WALMART that do not fit right.

      I've got some quality socks coming in so we'll see how that works out.

      . . . now I've got to look up "Israeli wrap."

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    2. Go to Walmart and buy some size 14 shoes, fill box with sheep skin, and they'll make great socks. When I was talking about Israeli wrap, I got off subject matter. It's an israeli combat dressing because I'm a bleeder. I'm ready for anything.

      As for feet, you take a long ACE bandage and start at the toesies, then wrap upward in a criss-cross fashion over the heel, ending ABOVE the ankle because you don't want to cut off circulation.

      Look up Plantar Fasciitis wrap, and you'll find it there. It's not just used for pain. It's a good protective wrap. THEN you won't need such thick socks. Hey, at least I'm TRYING.

      https://heelthatpain.com/plantar-fasciitis/taping/plantar-fasciitis-taping/

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  10. I hope this doesn't come off as weird or stalkery, but I'm a knitter, I love making socks, and your blog has brought me a lot of enjoyment over the years. If you really miss wearing handknit socks (they really are so much more comfortable than store-bought--I think it's because of the seamless toes), would you like me to make and send you a pair?

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    1. I'd be delighted. Contact me at:

      sixbears@hotmail.com

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    2. Carolyn, you are so precious!

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  11. My grandson and son wear size 14 shoes. When I buy my grandson socks, I buy ones that say 12-16. They fit. Getting the size you buy does not fit even though they should.

    My feet are picky about socks. So, I can totally understand your agony.
    pparsimony

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    1. It's not just having long feet, they are wide and I have a high instep. Makes it difficult sometimes.

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  12. Just a note about the Wigwam socks. If they are a bit too tight, you can wet the wool, stretch and let it dry. I wash mine in a washing machine (warm), but do not put in the dryer. Stretch while wet and air dry. I am so excited Carolyn is knitting you a pair.

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  13. There are four places that I have had great success in finding socks that fit my mutant 13 triple wide feet (with extra long finger-toes to really mess things up) as I don't buy sight unseen. The first two are normal stores and are JC Penny's (Gold toe) and at the XXL or Big and Tall shops. And I try them right there in the store before buying, which usually cheeses most places off, but didn't at the JCP.

    Strange how I can buy mutant feet shoes from Wal-Mart but they don't sell the socks to fit the feet.

    Third, if you actually have a real, honest to God cobbler shop in town, check them out. They can usually steer you to the right place.

    And, finally, my last ditch must have sock place is the Birkenstock store. Hate dealing with those granola crunchers, but my feet need the cover.

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    1. I really do live in the woods so my shopping options are limited. However, I just bought a pair of socks in a store run by a commune. (Christian cult, so strange) We happened to be in that town to visit someone in the hospital.

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  14. Never heard of foot wraps; I'll have to see if I can find anything online. I've always said that anything that says "one size fits all," REALLY means one size fits NONE!

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