Pattern Book Review + Ramblings: Folk Socks

              So if you follow me on Instagram then you know that I've been on a bit of a "sock kick" lately. Because of this I figured now would be a good time to review a sock knitting pattern book that I received as a gift from my Mom a few years ago. The book is called "Folk Socks, the History & Techniques of Handknitted Footwear (Updated Edition)" by Nancy Bush. This book is full of beautiful and amazingly detailed sock knitting patterns from all over the world.

It Includes:
  • 4 chapters on the origins and history of hand knit socks and stockings
  • A chapter on how to knit socks
  • A chapter containing a "Classic Sock Pattern" along with a few heel and toe variations (pages 55-67)
  • 19 additional sock patterns along with a few pages of glossy photos (pages 70-144)
  • A list of stores which stock the suggested yarns (page 150)

      I have always been a fan of history so naturally I was excited to discover that this book contained such a detailed and extensive history involving knitting socks, and stockings. 

As well as the meanings and origins of various color work patterns and designs both functional and decorative. The chapters are written in a way that allows you to try and understand our knitting foremothers and forefathers and how they created and evolved their techniques in order to create what we now know about knitting.

There are eight different options for both heel and toe variations which are perfect for creating socks with additional character and design as well as extra comfort to fit you, your family, and or your friends individual needs.

The patterns are clear and easy to read and both the socks worked with cables and with intarsia include a design chart along with the written instructions.

Look at the detail in these Egyptian Socks (page 78)

Up until now I've only knit socks using self striping yarn but after looking over each pattern I have started to plan a more intricate pair of socks for myself (which is a totally strange and new thing for me to even consider)

These (Welsh Country Stockings, page 93) are pretty simple but they have just enough detail to put them over the top (keeping in mind of course that I've been obsessing over socks for the last few weeks)

There are quite a few pairs of cabled socks. I'm thinking I'll knit a pair of them next because I don't see myself sporting any of the color combinations I've come up with using the sock yarn in my collection.

The Estonian socks (page 119) contain both color work and cabling

Again these aren't all that intricate but aren't they just gorgeous? (Lithuanian Amber Socks, page 125)

    As you can see the pictures are clear and easy on the eyes which is great! I find that pattern books tend to be hit or miss when it comes to staging and photo clarity (Ukranian Socks, page 141)

What I really love about the Shetland socks (page 129) is that they were knit in these colors to represent the land in which they originated from.

 I love that these patterns are so deeply entwined with the history, geography and culture of the people who created and inspired them. 

Rating: 10/10

Difficulty: 9/10

Thoughts: I truly believe that owning a copy of this book will benefit any and everyone who knits whether or not they knit socks often. This pattern book is so much more than just that, it is also a book on the history and the origins of knitting and how it evolved into what it is today. Having extensive knowledge of your craft is very important in my opinion, but when you factor in all of the amazing patterns as well as the pattern and design variations found in this book I'd say that it is absolutely an essential. 

      When you read this book something wonderful happens; You feel a connection to people who's lives ended before yours began. People who were born in countries that you may never visit and spoke languages that you  may never understand. You will learn just how connected we all really are as human beings and as knitters creating garments to clothe, identify, comfort and inspire pride in ourselves and those that we knit for.

Let Me Know If You've Read The First Few Chapters of The Book, How You Feel Afterwards?

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