Finding Inspiration in Old Socks

Sometimes, inspiration can be found in the most mundane places. Catherine Tuggle shares her reimagining of what a pile of old socks could be. Where do you find inspiration? Send your story to

It was when my sons, Jack and Ed, went to college that their graying, smelly tube socks gained value. In order to capture the sentimentality that they represented I decided to turn these relics into something useful. Having started knitting when I was about five years old, the solution was natural: cut the socks into strips as you would pare an apple, and knit the strips into a vest that could be worn. This I did. Unfortunately, wearing the vest was a tad difficult: the garment was uncomfortably thick. On the other hand, having the vest was preferable to only a heap of old socks.

Taking this idea a bit farther, the next thing I tried was cutting cloth on the bias and kitting the strips into sweaters. The only one I kept is the one pictured here that I made from silk cloth. The only time I wore it was to one of my husband’s dreary firm Christmas parties. The tiny wings that the ends of the cloth made may have been the saving grace of the evening.

Catherine Tuggle is a member of the River Arts Alliance. To learn more about the benefits of membership, please visit:

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