So your socks are complete. Now what?
Washing your socks:
Depending on the yarn you used and your preferences, you may need to hand wash your socks. Soak is a fantastic no-rinse soap that is perfect for this task. Just add a little bit to your bucket or sink and fill with water. Throw your socks in and let them soak for at least 15 minutes. Squeeze out all the water you can then lay your socks out flat to dry. Pin them if desired.
If you are putting your socks through the washer and dryer, I recommend putting them into a mesh laundry bag. It will protect them from getting caught on other items while in the machines. And you'll be able to find them all when they move from one machine to the next.
If you did some fancy stitch work like cables or lace, I do recommend that you block your socks. You want to open up the lace and stretch out the crossed stitches so the patterning looks the best. Sock Blockers are perfect for this. We like the wire ones since items dry faster and they come in three sizes.
Other things to add to your socks:
Reinforcement thread - when you notice that your well-loved socks are wearing out in specific places, you'll want to strengthen those place on the next pair you knit. Reinforcement thread is a thin strand of wool and nylon that is held with the yarn to help add some strength to those areas that go first. Using it will help that next pair last longer.
Sock Stop - add some grip to the bottom of the feet so your loved ones don't fall over. Sock Stop comes in a tube and is easily applied to the fabric. Then just wait for it to dry. Its machine washable too. (And its great for other places you might want some grip like gloves.)
Mending - If you want to repair your socks after they've worn out and start to have holes, you can mend them. Use leftovers of the yarn the socks were knit in, reinforcement thread, or a thread of embroidery floss work best. Check out this video for some tips and tricks: https://youtu.be/y5E4iEGLPcc