Monday, January 12, 2009

How To: Make Your Own Sock Blockers

Have you ever gotten a sock done, only to find that you don't have the correct size sock blockers for it? Or have you simply discovered that $40 for a nice pair of wooden ones is just not in the cards at this time?

You can make your own sock blockers with a few minor ingredients, and things that you most likely already have, being a knitter.

You will need:

-A plastic placemat (a cheapo one from Target will do, one without an edge)

-T-pins (you do block your items, don't you?)

-craft scissors (the ones NOT for fabric cutting or yarn cutting)

-a machine made sock in the correct size that you don't care much about (surely there is still one in your drawers somewhere...)

-a permanent marker

-an emery board

To begin:

Lay your placemat out on the work surface, and pin your machine made sock to it, paying attention to keep the sock perfectly flat. You will most likely need to kid-proof the area, as some of the cutting process can be a

Grab your T-pins and your machine sock that you don't care about, and lay it on the placemat. You will be pinning the sock to the placemat with the T-pins, in order to form an outline of what your sock blockers need to look like.

Once it is pinned SECURELY, you will trace around the sock with a permanent marker. This is your stencil. If you get permanent marker on it...well, that's why we want you to use a sock you don't care about.

Now that you have your template for the first blocker traced out, grab those craft scissors and carefully cut out your blocker. You will want to cut inside the lines of the blocker, so that they don't end up bigger than the intended socks.

Now that you have one sock blocker cut out, you can use it to trace the next one. Make sure you have that first blocker at the exact dimensions you need, and then trace it onto the remaining placemat piece.

Cut out the second one, and now you have a pair! You aren't done yet, however. You will need to clean up those edges with the emery board, because I know you do not want to snag a nice handknit sock on a sharp edge! All you need to do is file the edges so that they are slightly rounded and won't snag on any yarn-y goodness.

After the filing, you will want to test your blocker on that sock-you-don't-care-about so that you can make sure there are no missed rough edges.

Once you are done, give your blockers a rinse to get the file shavings off of them, and put them in a box for safe-keeping.

Total cost for this project: $3 and 20 minutes of time, on the assumption you have t-pins and scissors already.

Happy blocking!

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