Winwick Mum Sockalong 5th birthday
Happy birthday to you,
Happy birthday to you,
Happy birthday dear Sockalong
Happy birthday to you!
Wow wow WOW! It’s five years since the Winwick Mum Sockalong started and I couldn’t be happier to know that the tutorials and the pattern are still so useful to people who are just starting out on their sock knitting adventures.
When you create something like the Sockalong, then of course you hope that it will be more than a short firework fizzle in the endless sky of the internet universe, but I can honestly tell you that apart from wanting to make sure that I tried to make it as easy as possible for someone to knit a pair of socks, there was never any grand plan – certainly never any 5 year plan! – and it has been wonderful to see how everything has evolved.
If you’re new to the blog, you might wonder what has evolved in those five years … Well, in the same year as the tutorials were written and published on the blog (always with the intention of them being freely available on the blog for anyone who wanted to use them), I turned them into paperback form as Super Socks for those who couldn’t or didn’t want to be online all the time, and also e-book form for those who prefer that format. I started the Winwick Mum Sockalong Facebook group so that people could ask questions in real time and that’s been amazing – there are thousands of people from all over the world in this group and thanks to the magic of time zones and people’s generosity in helping others to learn, this really is a group that works in real time – whatever the time! There’s also the Winwick Mum Knit n Natter group on Facebook which came about as those who were knitting socks also wanted to chat, to share other project pictures and to just connect with other people. Both groups have been quite a lifeline during our recent lockdown situation, and it’s been brilliant to see how many people have decided that now is the right time for them to be learning to knit socks.
What else? Well, I’ve won a few awards now (you can see them down the left hand side bar – I’m very proud of them!), I’ve been delighted to be invited to write articles and design socks for magazines, and best of all – I’ve got my very own Winwick Mum yarn designed in conjunction with West Yorkshire Spinners. And that’s not to mention all the people I’ve met and the friends I’ve made along the way – we never know when we drop a stone into the pond where the ripples are going to spread, do we?
It still blows me away to think about everything that has happened over the last five years. I have been very blessed, and I never forget that how much of that is down to you – thank you for knitting the socks, for sharing the tutorials with others who want to learn, for giving your time to help others once you have learnt yourself, for buying my books and my yarn … thank you! xx
So what happens now? Well, the Sockalong tutorials are staying on the blog for free – I have always said that if someone has the money to buy the yarn or buy the book then I would much rather than they bought the yarn and got started – so there’s no change there. Super Socks is still available for anybody who wants to buy a paperback or ebook version. West Yorkshire Spinners are still producing Winwick Mum yarn which is available from WYS stockists worldwide. There may be some more videos coming, but because I move at a snail’s pace where videos are concerned, we’ll leave it as that for now 😀
Another thing that hasn’t changed is the Winwick Mum Sockalong birthday giveaway. Every year, I get to do this and every year I think how fortunate I am to be able to even think about it. As usual there are two prizes:
There’s a signed copy of Super Socks, a ball of Winwick Mum yarn (in either Hidden Gem or Seascape), pack of mini bars of salted caramel chocolate (something sweet to nibble on always helps those brain cells when you’re learning something new!), a set of very cute stitch markers and a Winwick Mum Sockalong badge (which I’ve forgotten to photograph but you can see below).
When I first started knitting socks, I used scraps of yarn to make my own stitch markers but there is something nice about having a marker that’s fun or feels personal to you in some way when you’re knitting. I ordered these stitch markers from Diana Sian Crafts because I thought they would be a fun way to keep track of your rounds …
and of course they’re not just for socks – you might find you wanted to use them for other projects too!
And this is the Winwick Mum Sockalong badge which goes with both prizes – ideal for project bags and also for wearing to festivals (when we can go to them again) so that you can spot other Sockalongers.
For the last four years, I’ve been asking you to tell me how many pairs of Sockalong socks you knitted since the last Sockalong birthday. I’ll never know how many pairs of socks have actually been knitted using the tutorials but it’s nice to get at least some idea, so this year will be continuing the tradition. So far, our running total stands at 12,000 pairs – how many more have been knitted this year?! It’s not a competition with previous years, it’s just a bit of fun (and might also tell me how close we are to really taking over the world with hand-knit socks 😉)
To enter the giveaway, please comment how many pairs of basic Sockalong socks (not other patterns, please) you have knitted since May 2019. Don’t worry if you’re still making you first pair or are about to cast on, just write that information and your comment will count too. Because there’s a choice of yarn, don’t forget to tell me which one you would like!
Entries to the giveaway will close at 8pm BST on Friday 8 May 2020 and I will let you know the winners as soon as possible after that time (it may get to Saturday but I won’t have forgotten! 😀). I am happy to post the prizes anywhere in the world so don’t feel that you can’t be part of this because you don’t live in the UK. Don’t worry if you don’t have a Google or blog account to leave a comment, you can leave it as “anonymous” but don’t forget to put your name in the comment so that when I post the winners I’ll be able to identify you so that you can get in touch for your prize (and please do come back to check if you’re a winner)! Oh, and also don’t worry that your comment doesn’t show straight away – the comments are set for me to check them before they upload to the blog to make sure that no spam gets through so they are all safely stored in my blog messages until I’ve seen them. I’ll make sure they’re all uploaded on time!
Happy birthday Sockalong, here’s to many more years of socking all over the world!