Sock knitting is a popular passion, but it can get pretty expensive when you buy the gorgeous hand-painted yarns and fancy fibers (not that there's anything wrong with them!). For knitters on more of a budget, or who want to knit socks they don't have to wash by hand, there's Red Heart's Heart and Sole yarn.
This superwash wool/nylon blend is easy to work with, soft to touch and simple to care for, great for everyday, basic socks or for people learning to knit socks.
- Content: 70 percent superwash wool, 30 percent nylon
- Yarn weight: Super fine
- Gauge: Ball band says 36 stitches and 48 rows per 4 inches on size 2 US needles; I got 29 stitches and 38 rows per 4 inches on size 2 needles
- Yardage: 213 yards per 1.76 ounce (50 gram) skein
- Color availability: 3 solids, 3 self-striping and 7 self-patterning colorways
- Color used in swatch: Spring stripe
- Care instructions: Machine wash warm, dry flat. No bleach; cool iron OK.
Red Heart Heart and Sole yarn is a workhorse of a yarn. It's nothing fancy, just a nice superwash wool and nylon blend that allows you to knit cute socks (often that do all the work of striping or patterning for you) that are machine washable and durable at a good price.
The yarn is soft and warm as you'd expect from a wool blend, and quite easy to work with. I didn't have any splitting problems working with either metal or bamboo needles, flat or in the round.
The yarn is very stretchy, which is great for socks, and the brilliant and cheerful colors make sock knitting even more fun than it is already. (I didn't see any bleeding when I washed my swatch, but you might want to test your project for colorfastness before throwing it in the wash with other clothes.)
The yarn makes very lovely, smooth and even stitches, allowing the bright stripes or faux Fair Isle patterning to shine through.
This yarn is incredibly curly in Stockinette, though much of the curl went away after blocking. I don't think I'd use this one for a plain Stockinette sock that didn't have some kind of ribbed edge.
The yarn also contains aloe, which I assume is supposed to make the knitting a little smoother and perhaps soften your hands in the process. I didn't notice a big change after knitting with the yarn for most on an evening, but it doesn't seem to detract from the yarn either.
Uses for Heart and Sole
Red Heart Heart and Sole is, of course, a sock yarn, and being an easily machine washable sock yarn, and one with bright colors to choose from, it's a particularly good choice for sock knitting for kids and those who love vibrant colors and easy care.
But the solids make the yarn a little more versatile for people who don't want socks full of colorful stripes and who can't be trusted or don't want to bother with washing socks by hand.
The yarn would also be a nice choice for other fine knitting projects such as baby garments.
Heart and Sole retails for between $4 and $5 a ball; you'll need two balls to make a nice long pair of socks to fit the average woman. That's incredibly reasonable for socks that will be lovely to knit and wear as well as easy to care for.
Because my gauge was so wildly different from the gauge suggested on the ball band, I definitely suggest knitting a gauge swatch before setting out to knit with this yarn, rather than assuming that you'll knit to gauge (the ball band's or mine).