I ended up writing a discourse for a reply to Amy about socks, so I decided to post my discourse on socks here too, where it is more likely to be read. In short, if you are thinking about learning to knit socks, you have a lot of options. There are infinite ways to knit socks, and probably nearly infinite published books and patterns too. When you consider that you can mix and match and design your own variations, there truly are infinite possibilities. And that's not even mentioning the yarn possibilities, yet.
If you are going to make socks, first think about the yarn you want to use. What are the weight and stitch guage? Is it plain or patterned? A great place to find sock patterns is knitty.com. Here is the link to the archived sock patterns:
You might look at this one:
or here is a basic toe up formula:
Check out this one too:
You will notice that there are various ways of knitting socks. I think that until fairly recently, most socks were knitted top-down, with a flap heel and grafted toe, on four or sometimes five dpns. Now a lot of them are toe up, and two circular needles are popular for knitting both socks at once. Heel options for toe up socks used to be the peasant heel or the short rows heel, but now some patterns have gusset-heels from the toe up too. And then there are other random methods including entrelac or modular constructions. And you don't have to start with the standard sock anymore.
Here's a question for everyone. What is your favorite way to knit socks? I have taken to toe-up socks, with figure 8 cast on, then preferably changing to two circular needles to avoid second sock syndrome, and I haven't knitted any with gussets yet that were toe-up, but that is only for lack of time.
My current socks started with the figure 8 cast on, with short row heels, and they will be knee socks. And they are on dpns, but I got bored on the second sock and developed a new pattern, altering the ribbing to make it pull in more and hug my bad ankle more securely. The feet have pattern differences too. The second sock is almost done, and I will try to get a picture posted soon.