Ever since the bunion surgery turned out to be a failure I’ve been searching for comfy, wider shoes. Did you know that New Balance shoes are available in multiple widths, and combination lasts? (A combination last might include a wide toe box and average to narrow heel.) To my knowledge, they are the only brand out there making athletic shoes in these sizes.
Two years ago I bought a wide toe, narrow heel New Balance, and it was love. Unfortunately, the bunion has progressed, and the shoes I loved two years ago are comfy for only an hour or two. I thought that was the best I could hope for until the New Balance store’s anniversary sale flier arrived. Dudes, they have extra, extra wide shoes! I went down, told them the model I had worn, and asked to try their “wider than any normal foot could need” shoe. I wore my Jaywalker socks to the shoe store, and the new shoes felt wonderful over them. Best of all, this model shoe has a mesh bit where my bunion sticks out, instead of a reinforcing leather strap.
Today I wore capris, the new shoes, and commercial cotton tennis socks. My feet hurt! Here’s the lightbulb moment: when my daughters were babies we were taught to be as vigilant about sock sizes as we were about shoe sizes. Too small a sock could damage growing feet as much as too small shoes. These cotton footies were too small! OK, so it was still a dim bulb moment, because my first inclination was to see if I could find larger-than-average size cotton footies. About two hours later, the thought crystalized that even if I could find larger socks, they would just be longer, not longer and wider. What a shame I couldn’t get the wonderful fit I have with my handknit wool socks!
Finally I got it! I burrowed in my stash and found a multi-color 50 gram ball and some white yarn. I cast on 72 stitches for my wide feet (no need to worry about fitting my average size ankles this time), knit a 2 X 2 rib for 3/4 inch, stockingette for another inch, and changed to white for my usual flap heel. So far I’m loving it. I don’t think that even with the contrasting heels and toes there will be enough multi-color for a pair of footies. However, I do have a “fraternal” ball from the same company. Since these socks will be mostly hidden by my shoes, it doesn’t matter.
If this works out as well as I think it will, I will be on a tear to get a summer’s worth of footies knit.