so i too just started to knit socks this summer, after working on an ethnic multi-colored legging project for a while.
i do them knee high for use in costuming for folk dance groups. they are used as mens socks, which are often worn over the pants (the pants tuck into them). most of them, traditionally, have long lengths of extra yarn knotted or braided to wrap around and use as a 'garter' to hold the socks up.
I took a break from copying traditional designs and patterns and for these i don't plan them at all. i knit them without a pattern and develop and design them 'on the fly', improvising as i go along. the experienced women knitters that i show them too don't believe me when i tell them i improvise the patterns. oh well. the second sock ( blech to having to knit TWO of the same socks!) is of course copied from the first.
my technique for toes( these are all toe-up, as tradition in the Southern Balkans would have them) and heels is not so great yet. also knitting with enough 'give' or stretch in the 2 and 3 color areas is a challenge. i threw out a pair or 2 that i couldn't get over my ankle! even so, i have already sold several pairs.
i've been doing them with the cheapo worsted weight synthetic humongo skeins from the 'big box' craft stores(you know the ones) using huge(for me) #8 and 9 double points. this , after working for months on finely spun wool using #0 or #1 needles! quite a difference! it will be hard to go back to the fine work, as these knit up relatively quickly. if i make good use of knitting in my spare time ( ha! what is that?) i can do a pair in about a week and a half. i'd be curious to know how long a sock, or pair, takes other people.
you guys inspire me!