HOW A SPOOL OF YARN BECOMES A WARM, COMFORTABLE, WEARABLE SOCK.


ALTHOUGH YOU DO NOT HAVE A KNITTING MACHINE OR A SEAMING
MACHINE AT HOME TO MAKE A SOCK WITH, YOU MAY FIND IT INTERESTING TO KNOW
HOW A SPOOL OF YARN BECOMES A WARM, COMFORTABLE, WEARABLE SOCK.

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THE LIFE OF A SOCK BEGINS WITH A SPOOL, OR SPOOLS OF YARN, (SEE
FIGURE 1.1). THE SOCK MAY BE MADE OF A SINGLE TYPE OF YARN OR A BLEND OF
TWO OR MORE DIFFERENT TYPES OF YARN. SOCKS MADE WITH BLENDS BENEFIT FROM
THE ADVANTAGES OF EACH TYPE OF YARN SUCH AS, DURASPUN GIVES SOCKS
RESILIENCE AND DURABILITY. ACRYLIC BLENDS HELP SOCKS KEEP THEIR SHAPE WELL
AND HELPS PREVENT SHRINKAGE.

FIGURE 1.1
pic
FIRST, THE CREELER PLACES THE SPOOLS ON HANGERS THEN FEEDS THE
YARN INTO CIRCULAR KNITTING MACHINES. THE KNITTING MACHINE NEEDLES ARE
MOUNTED ON A SINGULAR CYLINDER (FOR FLAT KNITS), OR A DOUBLE CYLINDER (FOR
RIBS). AS THE CYLINDER TURNS, THE NEEDLES INTERLOCK LOOPS OF YARN,
BEGINNING AT THE TOP AND WORKING TOWARD THE TOE. A PERSON CALLED A KNITTER
KEEPS WATCH ON THE MACHINE AND MAKES SURE THAT THE SOCKS DO NOT HAVE ANY
DEFECTS SUCH AS RUNS OR HOLES, (SEE FIGURE 1.2, 1.3). WHEN THE SOCKS COME
OFF THE KNITTING MACHINE, THE TOE IS OPEN; OTHERWISE, IT LOOKS LIKE A
COMPLETE SOCK.


FIGURE 1.2
pic
FIGURE 1.3
pic
SECOND, THE SOCK IS SENT TO THE SEAMING DEPARTMENT WHERE THE
SEAMER PLACES THE SOCK IN A MACHINE THAT RESEMBLES A LARGE SOWING MACHINE
AND CLOSES THE TOE OF THE SOCK, (FIGURE 1.4). WHILE SOWING THE TOE THE
SEAMER ALSO CHECKS FOR ANY KNITTING DEFECTS IN THE SOCK.

FIGURE 1.4pic
THIRD, THE SOCK IS SENT TO THE BLEACH HOUSE WHERE IT IS
BLEACHED AND WASHED IN LARGE WASHING MACHINES, (FIGURE 1.5).

FIGURE 1.5 pic
FOURTH, AFTER BLEACHING THE SOCK IS SENT TO THE DYE HOUSE WHERE
IT IS DYED THE APPROPRIATE COLOR DEPENDING ON THE STYLE OF SOCK. AFTER
DYEING, THE SOCK IS CHECKED AGAIN FOR QUALITY-BY-QUALITY CONTROL, (FIGURE
1.6), BEFORE BEING SENT TO BOARDING TO BE SHAPED.

FIGURE 1.6 pic
FIFTH, IN BOARDING, THE SOCKS ARE STRETCHED DRY OVER FLAT METAL
FRAMES SHAPED LIKE A FOOT, (FIGURE 1.7). HEAT IS APPLIED WHICH GIVES THE
SOCK ITS SHAPE, FORM, AND SMOOTH APPEARANCE. THE BOARDER AGAIN CHECKS THE
SOCK FOR DEFECTS DURING THIS PROCESS.

FIGURE 1.7 pic
SIXTH, AFTER THE SOCKS HAVE THEIR SHAPE AND COLOR, THEY ARE PUT
INTO PAIRS ACCORDING TO COLOR AND LENGTH, SEE FIGURE 1.8. DURING THE
PAIRING STAGE, THE PAIRERS AGAIN CHECK FOR QUALITY AND CLIP ANY EXCESS
STRINGS FROM THE TOP OF THE SOCKS. IN ADDITION, THE SOCKS ARE GRADED INTO
CLASSIFICATIONS SUCH AS FIRSTS, IRREGULARS, AND SECONDS. SOME SOCKS MAY BE
FURTHER EMBELLISHED WITH APPLIQUS OR DECORATIONS SUCH AS LACE BEFORE
HEADING TO THE PACKAGING DEPARTMENT.

FIGURE 1.8 pic
SEVENTH, IN PACKING, THE SOCKS ARE AGAIN CHECKED FOR QUALITY
AND PLACED IN THE APPROPRIATE TYPE OF PACKAGING, SEE FIGURE 1.9, 2.1.

PACKAGING MAY CONSIST OF BAGS; HANG TAGS, ADHESIVE BANDS, CARDBOARD
INSERTS, CARDBOARD BACKING, STICKERS, OR LABELS.

FIGURE 1.9 pic
FIGURE 2.1 pic
LASTLY, AFTER PACKAGING, THE SOCKS ARE PLACED IN CARDBOARD
BOXES READY FOR SHIPPING TO THE WAREHOUSE OR RETAILERS, SEE FIGURE 2.2 –
2.6.

FIGURE 2.2 pic
FIGURE 2.3 pic
FIGURE 2.4 pic
FIGURE 2.5 pic
FIGURE 2.6 pic
THIS IS HOW THE LIFE OF A SOCK BEGINS FROM A SPOOL OF YARN TO A
FINISHED PRODUCT ON A DEPARTMENT STORE SHELF. I HAVE WORKED TWO YEARS IN A
PLANT JUST LIKE THIS ONE AND I ALWAYS FIND IT INTERESTING JUST HOW A SOCK
IS MADE.