Thanks for the advice. I already have the yarn purchased for the project though, and it wasn't particularly easy to find cheap cotton blend yarn in the colors I would like. I'll check out the LYS though and see what I find. I don't want to spend a ton of money on some fun socks that will probably only be worn for a few hours around Christmas this year.
I was still sort of curious about knitting with cotton versus other materials. For example, if I chose to knit a cotton jacket instead of a wool jacket, would I still knit to the same gauge or aim a little smaller to leave room for stretch?