Let's get this straight. I had a baby once. I refuse to believe an infant's feet are 5 1/8 inches long. Refuse.
I gotta believe that there is a standard size for an infant's socks, just like there is a standard size for baby sweaters and hats. But if there is, I have not put my finger (or my computer mouse) on it. (help!) What I have found is patterns using a specific yarn -- usually DK weight (why?!) -- and saying, "Knit so many rows." But what if I want to substitute yarns? I just want to use up my Opal Crocodile, folks, and knit an infant-size replica of the roll-top plain cutie-pie little crocodile socks I made for myself. Why is this turning into such a problem? (Maybe I'm the problem. Okay. I said it so you don't have to.)
So, now that we've got that out of the way...
My Ann Norling "Basic Baby & Kid Socks" pattern says the infant size should be 4-6 inches in length from the heel to the tip of the big toe. Are these gargantuan babies we're talking about, or am I forgetting just how HUGE a human baby is? Am I in so much of a brain fog that I'm confusing a human baby with, perhaps, a Cabbage Patch doll? (raise your hand if you're too young to know what a Cabbage Patch doll is.)
I've found several patterns with such unhelpful language as, "continue knitting until the leg is 1 to 2 inches shorter than desired length." Thank you. Let us review: Un-help-ful.
This one takes the cake: "Continue knitting in stockinette until the length of the sock is 1 1/2 to 2 inches from the top of your longest toe."
MY longest toe? I.don't.think.so! Should I stand up and measure from a standing position, or should I be in a sitting position, measuring straight from the knitting in my hands to the top of my longest toe? (This one is just BEGGING for one of Franklin's fab sketches.)
Another pattern suggests "keep trying the sock on the infant. Only the big toenail should be still exposed." Holy crap! Only the big toenail exposed? No wonder I have to knit miles of stockinette! Have I been mistakenly looking up patterns for knitted baby sausage casings? No, I have not! Socks.
What if, say for example, I don't have the baby in front of me? What if this is supposed to be a gift? I can see me now, stalking people at the grocery store: "Excuse me, could I just try this
sausage casing sock on your infant? What's that? Oh, no worries. We are going to leave the top of the big toenail exposed." Because apparently elephantine babies -- you know -- breathe through the big toenail.
I'm not done. I have another issue or two. Don't you DARE click out of here yet! I'll come and find you if you do.
Here's another issue: The patterns I'm finding for fingering-weight yarn seem to be saying I should cast on about 40 stitches for an infant's sock. Once again, am I living in some sort of a parallel universe where the infants are the size of baby King Kong? For my own socks, I cast on 60. Is it possible that an infant's foot is two-thirds MY size? Am I nuts? Did I have too many gin-and-tonics last weekend? Have I had too much chocolate? Have I had too much Diet Coke? Am I bored out of my gourd this week? Okay, the answer is yes to those last five questions; I will give you that. But can somebody please help me with my baby sock issues before I blow a head gasket over here?
Submissions of giant baby feet photos will be gratefully accepted. Anything to make me laugh. I could use it. But also, if you have access to an infant -- say three to six months old or thereabouts, and a ruler nearby, would you tell me how long the little darling's foot is? And if you're going to tell me it's 5 1/8 inches, you better have convincing photographic (not Photoshopped!) proof! A circumference measurement would be great, too. I don't want the cuff of the sock to be a tourniquet.
Better yet, if you can find me some credible patterns for fingering-weight infant socks, you'll be my hero.