It was half-term here last week, and we went to the Lake District for a few days. I took a goodly pile of projects close to being finished, in the hope that I would get a bit of time to knit.
These socks were top of the pile - a gift for my dad which stalled somewhat when the little bean was born. As is my usual style I combined two yarns. However, for the first time I changed the way I knit the toe in order to create a thicker fabric and strengthen the area around the ball of the foot which - I find (YMMV) is the first place to develop a hole.
The effect, as you can see, is to change the pattern of the fabric and make the stripes run perpendicular to the those on the rest of the sock. All I did was to knit alternate stitches with my two yarns (rather than alternate rounds) and make a double weight fabric as you would in any Fair Isle knitting. It does shrink the width of the sock slightly, but I haven't had to adjust the number of stitches to maintain fit (my dad tried on the first sock a wee while ago).
I'd be interested to hear from anyone who 1) already does something similar or 2) gives this a try. I need to refresh my sock pile, so I'm definitely going to make myself some squidgy toed socks to see how they work out.