Wool is fiber derived from the fur of sheep. It has many excellent qualities which work well for socks. It is breathable, strong, and durable. Wool is also elastic—when stretched, it wants to spring back to its original shape. This fiber is great for knitting socks because they will keep their shape over time.
Different breeds of wool can also wear differently. Fine, soft breeds like Merino are less durable than other breeds and tend to wear out faster. Coarser breeds such as Corriedale or Romney will wear well, but might feel less soft.
Most wool or wool-blend sock yarns are machine washable for easy care. However, always take care to read the label, especially when using a yarn that isn't labeled sock yarn, because some yarns require hand-washing.
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