I need better sock yarn!

I need better sock yarn! I want to avoid using any plastic because of the environmental impact. Thus I tried to knit some socks with 100% wool. This is the result before the first wash with some light use:

What 100% natural yarn would you recommend for socks? I want the socks to be as warm as possible and preferable not lighter than worsted. The socks in the picture were knitted with aran weight. I do not want to make socks that do not last until first wash even anymore.

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Tightly plied worsted spun yarn is supposed to wear longer than softer, fluffier yarns. I’d have no idea how to go about finding them I’m sorry to say. Working at the tightest gauge you can manage would help too. I wish you the best in finding the yarn you need.

I wonder if a thin hemp yarn worked with the wool would help them last longer. Heel stitch used for the entire sole might extend wear.


See if you can find the instructions for the ‘afterthought’ heel. It’s a method that allows you to replace a worn heel. Also look for yarns meant for socks. They’re usually wool with a small percentage of nylon that helps them wear longer.

It takes forever (and lasts) but you might try a bit of twined knitting.

Done with two separate balls. One st first ball of yarn, then put yarn under OR over (always do it the same way), next st uses second ball. Can’t knit with left hand – at least I can’t.


I never thought about using this technique for socks! Good idea, @MumandMimi


I did not know it is called twined knitting, but I have used this technique before. I am able to do it pretty fast by keeping both yarn over my left index finger. I might consider to use it for socks too.

I knit with yarn in left hand (right, too when doing two colors).

Please explain your technique. Sounds great.

I am knitting Continental style, so I am never wrapping the yarn around the right needle but I am rather picking it up with the right needle. Most English youtube videos made by Continental knitters have the index finger far away from the left needle. I got it really close to the left needle, in the same way as in Russian knitting videos. It is so close that sometimes I might scratch my index finger with my right needle, if I switch to a needle size I have not used for some time.

So I place the “lower” ball to the left and the “higher” ball to the right of me. Then I place both yarns over my index finger and I get a slight tension by squeezing together index and long finger. Because the balls are in different direction the yarn separates a bit on the index finger. Then I knit as I usually do when knitting Continental style picking up the color I want from the index finger.


I find most of the Continental knitting videos less than helpful. I watched a Arne and Carlos video and they summed it up nicely IMO: It’s rude to point. Keep your finger close to the needle.

Twined knitting is on my gotta try it list. Right now I’m into two colors and currently illusion knitting. Still two colors but only one at a time.


I also knit Continental. When I get to my knitting, I’ll try and see what happens.

Thanks for the video – is that how you do it, engblom?

I knit continental like those in the video but instead of holding only one yarn over the index I hold both.

I can see that I have been misunderstanding one thing: I thought you meant that one ball is always under and one is always over but actually they should change role with each stitch so that the float is twisted behind each stitch. That can be done without letting go of the yarn but yes, it will slow me down too despite holding both yarns over the finger at the same time.

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Wish I could figure out how to hold two colors/yarns in my left hand. I can do it but only using two different fingers.

I’ve been having so much fun with this that I’ve taken a break and have been doing illusion knitting because it uses only one color on each round or row. Soon I’ll be working on the two colors in the same row thing again. I was ready to leave it for now but found a pattern I just have to use part of.

Some people (not me) are able to make these holders work.

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If I can remember where the safe place I put it is I have a plastic thing from Knit Picks for holding two strands separate. I should find it and give it a try.

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I think a knitting thimble will not help in the case you want to twist the float with each stitch. If it is okay with straight floats (like I thought it was first), then a thimble might help.

Here is a cap I knitted by holding both yarns over my index finger, but without twisting the short floats on wrong side.

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Back to the original question, would some silk work? Is there any wool yarn out there that is firmly spun and contains a small percentage of silk? Or a fine silk yarn that could be combined with wool. You could use it for the entire sock or maybe just the high wear areas: heels and toes.


It has the yarn too far from my left index finger. Won’t work for me. Other than that, looks good. Better than others I’ve seen which are just in a straight line.

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I’ve tried knitting Continental with two colors in left hand. The only way I can do it (so far) is one on index finger, the other over middle finger. Works for me. Or sometimes, with two colors, I use two hands. It’s helpful to know more than one way.