[HNW] hand-knitting stockings

Carolyn Kayta Barrows kayta at frys.com
Sun Dec 30 22:53:46 PST 2001

In the meantime, I have to finish two pair of coarse wool stockings
>for the kid going back to college in snow country, then maybe I'll finally
>finish the heel and foot of the second stocking of a pair in red wool, based
>loosely on Elenora of Toledos 10 stitches & 13 rows to the inch! When those
>are off the fine needles, there's a pair of patterned stockings from Ireland
>I might copy for my husband....

What weight of yarn should I use for stockings, c.1850-60, for a woman of
middle class?  On the one hand I don't want them as coarse as a sweater,
because they'd look too clunky and lower-class at that weight.  On the
other hand, I don't want them as fine as a t-shirt, or I'd never finish
them.  Maybe the same gauge as baby sweaters, or a little bit thinner?  Is
it correct to use cotton instead of wool?  Is silk wrong for hand knit
stockings of this period, or just very expensive?

Please give me the name for the right gauge of yarn, not just the brand
name of a likely candidate, and the right needle size for that yarn.  I'm
not really a knitter, and I will have to buy the yarn and needles new and
not count on scrounging them from a thrift store.

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