Floral Fair Socks ^ . ^

Fairisle Socks!  In all their imperfect glory

Hello Internet Knitting and Elven Folk world!  I am finally sharing with you my Floral Fair Socks – imperfectly handknit over many months interspersed with walks in the woods, mountains and kicking up salty white foam of the sea.  This morning, I woke to see the silver dollar moon lowering herself in the far North/West of the sky.  Since living here, I have never noticed the moon in that spot before and feel a little like it heralds something new – a new lunar year means transformation.

It’s always significant to me when I finish something that aligns so perfectly with that change in the year.

Summer beginnings – Malabrigo Sock Yarn with the then blue poppy pods

So , lets summon up August – the month of heat, berries, harvests and summer hanging by a strong thread.  Cooler breezes in the evening and the first significant change in the lowering sun in the sky.  I have wanted to make some intricate socks using Malabrigo Sock yarn for a while now.  It’s a lush sock yarn, albeit quite expensive. After what felt like eternally rolling those skeins of wool into balls – I hunted through my extremely awesome book Traditional Fair isle Knitting by Sheila McGregor  for a floral motif that I could use as the main panel.  The one I chose, just jumped out at me from the page and I think asked to be used!  I have never tried stranded colourwork using such fine needles (just 2mm) and was a little nervous that I lacked the skill – The end result definitely didn’t turn out perfect – even after a solid blocking.  Regardless these will just be worn by my feet carrying my intention and I’m very happy with them as a small wearable piece of magic (until, I’m cursing at the 100 year old floor nails that will ultimately lead to their messy demise).

I cast on 72 stitches – used a 2 knit/1 purl rib (which I’ve been pretty partial to lately) and just went from there!  Next pair, I will make a little bit bigger because you can probably see that the sock has stretched in areas.  I think maybe 76-78 stitches.  They fit like a glove though and are so very cozy.

knitting in my backpack while finding swimming holes Cape Breton national park –  channelling  some river spirits 😉
Summer trails, a backpack full of knitting, food and water 😀

Autumn set in and winter far, far too early for even our liking. Winds and storms, snow and ice.  It rained on Saturday and washed away all of our snow – the thermometer said 12 degrees and today it is so well below freezing.  It’s odd and doesn’t feel right with the natural rhythm of seasons.  Sometimes, I get frightened about what is to come if the weather continues to be so erratic and peculiar.  In 2015, we received so much snow that I would wake up from nightmares of being completely buried in snow!  

Power Outages and storms 
Painting plants, mushrooms and finishing knits

Back to knitting and socks…. I finished the first with the purple heel and cuff in the cabin in Cape Breton, the second was finished just the other day here at our house.  I switched the colours because I genuinely thought I didn’t have enough purple to continue and would be interesting to see the reverse colourwork.  I was so very wrong about not having enough – I swear I still half of both balls of wool!  Fine yarn goes a long, long way apparently!

 

Kitchener stitch for the toes!  Crystals from Nova Scotia charging in the window 
Tiny Paintings and sock details
Floral Fair Socks

I am so happy to finish something I have been hoping to try for years now!  It feels good 🙂  I am starting to really build up a stash of wool with amounts that I can’t  weave into a garment.  I’ve been thinking that I may soon take a major break from the online world and work on slowly knitting Jamie and I a patchwork blanket with all of the odds and ends .  When I first started knitting, I made two large patchwork blankets with the entirety of my mom’s wool stash.  I use to just cuddle up and watch Sense and Sensibility, imagining living a remote life by the sea while voraciously knitting blocks for the blanket.  Unencumbered by smartphones or anxiety.

** SIDENOTE **

Sometimes, I’m afraid we are beginning to focus too much on who we think we should be (especially with the overwhelming influence of Social Media) rather than discover who we actually are.  I see so much online of clearly longing for a certain type of life – a more simple, earth enriched lifestyle – more human in a lot of ways.  But how much of it is earnestly being lived when we focus on recreating ourselves for a 2d screen?  Anyway – a will stop!  I am always pondering the impact and the meaning.  I started reading Culture Jam by Kalle Lasn – it’s dated already (written in 1999) and I don’t think they even fathomed what would to come with Social media.  But our world has changed a lot in a very short amount of time.  I think I’ll write a lot more about it when I finish it.

BUT TODAY….

This evening, Jamie and I are going to get all bundled up and walk Henry to a house not far from ours to see their light show!  I’m excited because the walk is down country roads without any street lights but the big bright moon and the occasional fairy lights strung up around the little homes.  I’ve been finding it very difficult getting into a festive spirit because I’m not seeing family this Christmas and honestly I think because deep winter set in like 6 weeks ago here.  But, today with out little tree up and decorated by the fireplace and the promise of a moonlit country walk, I’m beginning to feel a little more spirited away.

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays ^.^  I hope you get to see family and friends and feel warm and loved!

For you, a medieval Christmas Carol ❤  My favourite christmas song growing up was Gaudete and to this day, I love Medieval Christmas songs… this is a recently discovered one that’s haunting and beautiful.

3 thoughts on “Floral Fair Socks ^ . ^

  1. Greetings Julia
    Thank you for such a long and rich post, full of delights to look upon and ideas to ponder. Whilst I hope you choose not to break from blogging, I do understand your reservations about so much of life spent online. When my husband and I moved from the city to a hilly, more rural home in the Peak District, we were without internet for 104 days! In that time we were able to do so much with our house and land, we made a deeper connection with each other and with ourselves. I began to write poetry and reflect on the world around me in a way I have not done since I was a child. Now it is winter and I am insulated by my online connections: something has escaped me!
    I ramble- I intended to say mostly that your socks are beautiful and your words and images mean a great deal to me. Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year.
    Sue

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  2. Your train of thought resonates with me, Julia. Well said. I look forward to more of your thoughts on that book 📖. Your socks 🧦 are lovely and certainly well made for a first time! I’ve been knitting 🧶 (Yay…finally a knitting 🧶 emoji!) socks 🧦 for myself and family for decades. Seems like I always have a pair on the needles. In fact I will be finishing up a pair tonight – just the toe on the 2nd 🧦 to go. By the way I made a Winter ❄️ Solstice/ Full Moon 🌕 elixir that I will use with my watercolor paintings. Love the idea of the powerful energies of the solstice & full moon 🌕 being infused into my drawings/paintings. Your photos, paintings, and thoughts are lovely as always. And that song is BEAUTIFUL! I’ve not heard it before. Thank you for sharing! Blessed Christmas 🎄 and New Year to you and Jamie!

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