Thursday, April 06, 2017

Pattern Re-release: Viola's Stockings

Many years ago, maybe even before I self-published my first pattern, I wrote a sock pattern and submitted it to a book collection. The pattern was accepted, but it took several years before the book was finished and published in Defarge Does Shakespeare. It was a thrilling moment for me to see my name in print after all that time had passed!

Unfortunately, the book didn't sell as well as we all hoped, which meant that designers didn't get much in the way of payment (the Cooperative Press model meant that contributors were paid royalties or dividends, as it were, based on total sales and their contribution size). Recently, those who were involved with the production of the book decided that we designers could do better by selling the patterns ourselves, individually, and gave us the rights back to our patterns.

All of that is a long way of saying that my pattern, Viola's Stockings, is now available through my Ravelry store!

These socks were inspired by the character Viola in Shakespeare's Twelfth Night, one of my favorite plays. In the play, Viola is shipwrecked in a strange place and finds herself alone and dependent on her own intelligence and strength to survive. She quickly realizes that things will be much easier for her if she disguises herself as a man. She succeeds in passing as a man but finds herself conflicted about her identity when she falls in love with Orsino, the handsome duke for whom she works.

When I imagined how Viola might dress herself, I though she would likely wear something hidden to others that would nevertheless remind her that underneath the men's clothing, she was still a woman. Thus, the cuff of these socks is lacy and feminine, with a touch of sparkle in the form of beads.

These cuffs, of course, would be covered by her pants when worn, so all that anyone else would see is the diamond lattice pattern that forms the rest of the leg and instep.

The socks are knit from the cuff down, starting with a beaded picot hem. They use a traditional heel flap and gusset and are finished with a wide toe that is grafted with Kitchener stitch. You'll need about 100 g of fingering weight sock yarn (the sample shown in the photos used Cascade Heritage Silk); your actual yarn usage will depend on how long your feet are. The pattern is graded to two adult sizes, to fit a foot circumference of 8 (10) in./20.5 (25.5) cm. The stitch patterns are both written and charted, and my tech editor and I have just spent several weeks whipping this pattern into tip-top shape.

Even though this isn't a new pattern, I'm very excited to have it officially join my portfolio!


  1. Oh lovely socks! I am one of the ones who bought the book, so I have the pattern, but it got a bit buried under the relentless onslaught of new and shiny things. I'm so happy to have it brought to my attention. This year my goal is to knit from long ago acquired yarns and to knit patterns which have been languishing in my library. Now I'm off to dig into my stash for just the right yarn.

  2. Beautiful!! I love them! The color is spectacular as well! Nicely done!