Happy Feet – brand new sock patterns!
What makes for happy feet? New socks, of course! 🙂
Oh, this has been one BIG secret to keep because not only are there new sock patterns to tell you about, but there’s new yarn as well!
As part of their mission to offer what knitters want to buy, West Yorkshire Spinners review the colours that they have in their ranges and even the ranges themselves on a regular basis to make sure that they are keeping up with consumer demand and also fashion trends. It was the turn of the Signature 4ply solid colours to be reviewed and as a result, some of the less popular shades have been taken out of the range. It’s always a little sad to see colours being discontinued but what it does mean is that there is space for new colours, and I probably don’t have to tell you how excited I was when I was chatting to my friends at WYS and they told me that there were going to be EIGHT new shades being dyed. Eight shades! (And yes, you are absolutely right if you thought that I might have checked whether one of them is purple, and phew – it is! 🙂 )
Aren’t they beautiful? They are jewel-bright colours, and I am sure they are going to be very popular. The new shades on the top chair are Pacific (top), Cobalt (left) and Spruce, and on the bottom stool, Amethyst (top left) and Amber (top right), Fuchsia (bottom left), Rouge (centre) and Sunflower (bottom right).
There are no prizes for guessing that right after checking whether there was a purple in the new colours, my next question was “How soon can I get my mitts on them?”!
“We’re going to put them all in the post to you,” said my WYS friends, “and would you like to design some socks with them?”
I don’t know why they even ask me this question!
The brief was to create socks that would bring an explosion of colour to anyone’s sock drawer. Colourwork was the order of the day, making a change from lace or cables, and there were so many ideas buzzing around my mind that I am surprised I got any sleep for days!
There are always lots of things for me to consider with new patterns, first and foremost of which for me is that the pattern must be suitable for as many people to knit as possible. By that, I mean that I always try to write patterns that anybody could have a go at, whether they’ve knitted socks before or not. I’ve got so many tutorials on the blog now from knitting a basic sock to reading charts to knitting with more than one yarn that if anybody got stuck on a pattern that I have written for West Yorkshire Spinners (or anybody else), there will be help online as I always base my patterns on the same Basic 4ply Socks pattern. Even if you’ve never knitted a sock before but really wanted to start with one that wasn’t the Basic 4ply Socks, then I would say to go for it because you are much more likely to finish a pattern that shouts loudly to you – and there’s plenty of backup on the blog.
Would you like to see what I came up with?
The collection is called Happy Feet and the designs are called Hive (top left), Maze, Roar (bottom left) and Zoom.
Hive and Zoom are colourwork, Maze and Roar are mosaic. And it just so happens that there is an Easy Colourwork Socks tutorial and an Easy Mosaic Socks tutorial on my blog so there is no reason at all why you couldn’t knit these socks. I’ve thought of everything! 🙂
These next photos show the patterns a bit more clearly, and I’ll talk about them in more detail below. The socks are shown in eight colourways so that you can see how the new yarns work with the existing Signature 4ply solids range.
Oh, they were such fun to create! Would you like to take a closer look?
Let’s start with HIVE. It got it’s name from the hexagon shapes which look like honeycomb, and I’m sure you’ll be buzzing with excitement just like I was when you make yourself a pair of these!
Hive is a colourwork sock which uses four colours but only two at any one time. It does look complicated but I do like to design a pattern that looks harder than it is! 🙂 There are stripes of colour that run across the pattern, and you’ll be pleased to know that the patterned heel is very easy – no complicated stitches at all!
The colours used are Amber, Sunflower, Fuchsia and Rouge for the left colourway and Cobalt, Pacific, Amber and Sunflower for the right colourway. I love the way the socks look different just by changing the base colour and one other – both socks use Amber and Sunflower but yet they look so different!
The next pattern is MAZE. I’m quite sure you can see how it got it’s name! I was originally inspired by the idea of Minotaurs and Greek mythology, but whilst I was knitting the socks, I was also reminded of a little handheld maze game that came in a Christmas cracker one year – I’m sure you’ve seen something similar. I could imagine trying to roll a tiny ball between the black or red “walls” and it amused me no end 🙂
Maze is a mosaic pattern so if you’ve already knitted my Easy Mosaic Socks then you’ll know that this pattern is created from slip stitches and only uses one colour at a time – I love the way that mosaic patterns work out; these definitely make you look like a sock knitting superstar!
This pattern has a short row heel so that the mosaic can continue underneath the foot. The colours here are Spruce and Liquorice on the left, Rouge and Marshmallow on the right.
Come on, let me hear you ROAR! It’s time to let out your inner tiger with this fun pair which looked to me like the markings of a big cat. OK, perhaps not quite so much on the berry-coloured pair, but don’t they look fabulous in the blues and pinks?
Roar are another mosaic pair of socks so those complicated-looking shapes are simply slip stitches created by knitting with one colour at a time. Clever, eh?
This pair has a heel flap and gusset heel so the animal theme continues under the foot with stripes … oh, I know they’re not much like tiger stripes but let me show a little creative license here! You’ll also see that there are blocks of colour and this pattern uses four yarns – Poppy Seed, Sunflower, Amber and Nutmeg for the pair on the left, and Milk Bottle, Fuchsia, Blackcurrant Bomb and Blue Raspberry for the pair on the right. These Roar socks are a lovely example of how the new colours blend with the existing Signature 4ply solid colours – they are made for each other!
Last but not least, allow me to introduce ZOOM. These were inspired by the black and white chevron “sharp bend” road signs that you see on our roads, and I wanted to play with the colours so that they worked their way down the patterned section.
These are colourwork socks, again using no more than two colours per round, and once you get into the pattern, they are very easy to knit. Zoom has a heel flap and gusset heel and the only patterned section is on the leg so once you get past the heel, they’re a very quick knit too!
The two colourways are Milk Bottle, Pennyroyal, Fuchsia and Amethyst on the left, and Milk Bottle, Cornflower, Chocolate Lime and Cobalt on the right.
And there we have it – four new sock patterns for you to get your teeth and your knitting needles into! 🙂 I hope you’ll agree that these patterns would suit anybody’s feet so hopefully there will be something here that you would like to knit for yourself or for someone else.
“Where can I buy the yarn and the patterns?” Ah, I knew you were going to ask me that! The new yarn colours and the pattern book were officially launched on Monday 20 June and have been making their way to WYS stockists both here in the UK and further afield this week – if they’ve not reached your local yarn shop yet, they won’t be long in arriving so don’t worry! The book is also available from the WYS website.
All of the four patterns are available in the Happy Feet book but also as separate PDF downloads; again, ask at your local yarn shop or you can find them in the West Yorkshire Spinners Ravelry store (Ravelry link).
I am certain that you will find a reason to knit at least one of the new WYS colours, and I’d love it if you used them to knit a pair of Happy Feet socks too! Do let me know how you get on! xx