Sock Boot Camp


I’m back, well rested, de-germed and mildly more enthusiastic than I have been all week!  Thank you for your get well messages, you are such a lovely, lovely bunch.  I’ve spent the last week blowing my nose, knitting, crocheting, sleeping (oh my goodness, so much sleeping!) reading, eating toast and not much else, and I’m glad to be back in full health again!  I’ve been quite productive, so have plenty to show you in good time! 

Today I felt normal enough to attend Sock Boot Camp, held at Knitting Pretty, one of my very favourite LYS’s in Karori Mall.  Lana is a sock whizz and is teaching all of the methods of sock knitting, and students turn up to the classes they want to learn.  I’ve been waiting for them to finish socks on two needles, and as today was the first class on DPN’s, I slathered moisturiser on my peeling nose, attempted to conceal the bags under my eyes, (I’m noticing colds take their toll these days!) packed up my sock knitting kit and trundled off to Karori!

I’m really into sock knitting, my Mum is an avid sock knitter, and knits birthday socks for us every year.  I love my birthday socks and have a huge collection on them as they are so well made, they last and last and last.  While they take forever to knit, they’re something I have been wanting to make for ever.  Do you want to meet my Mum?  I haven’t told you this before, but I ghost-write (ha!) a blog for my Mum to advertise her flower shop.  I get paid one 100gm ball of Ashford Tekapo per week, but am only allowed to do one post per week, because let’s face it, I’d do two per day if I was allowed!  It hasn’t been going for long, but today I did a post on my Mum’s socks!  So if you want to go and see her and say hello, click here!  Writing a personal craft blog is soooooooooo different to writing a businessy blog!  Don’t forget to leave her a comment telling her how lovely her daughter is! 

  Ages ago I read in Debbie Stoller’s Stitch and Bitch book, her memories of her grandmother… I pulled it out to quote her: “From the time she first learned to knit, at age six, my grandmother was responsible for knitting socks to cover each of the thirty feet in her family.”  Her memory of her grandmother has really stayed with me, that back then, knitting was a necessity rather than an art form.  Feet got cold, just as they do now, but back then, there were no sweat shops mass-producing cute spotty socks, or socks with cartoon owls on them which end up with holes in the toes after two wears.  (Uh oh, I’m on my soapbox now!)  People knitted socks because they needed socks, and since then, I’ve wanted to make my own socks.  And KB’s socks too, because I think that would be awesome.  I want to lessen my impact on the earth as life goes on, and each year try to change a few things about the way I live and my impact on others.  So this year, I’m going to start knitting socks, because even though I don’t buy many socks (thanks to Mum) KB does and I do buy some, and this is something small that I can change.  Aaaaaaaand…. I’ve been typing for ages with no pictures, I promise this is the last thing!  I am veeeery inspired by the lovely Gilly at Tickety-Boo who has just made her first pair of lovely socks, and when I saw hers, well, that was that, I wanted some coooool socks like that too, so I enrolled at Sock Boot Camp.  (Thank you for the inspiration Gilly!)

So now I’ve told you all about why I am inspired to become a sock knitter, let me show you my socks-to-be!

Rainbowey goodness!  I loooooooove this sockenwolle (!), it’s one of the latest, and definitely the best colourways from Opal and even though I’m not very far into my first band, I’m having heaps of fun knitting it!

As the weather has become a bit chillier, I wore my new hat to Sock Boot Camp, I finished it last night, washed it, spun it and then blocked it in the airing cupboard…. KB called it the chef hat because when I was knitting it, it did look like a chef hat, and admittedly still does when it’s lying down, but once it is on, oh my, it’s my perfect hat.  It’s a floppy big hat and is just where I’m at in terms of style… I think I’m going to have a hundred of these by the time I’m sick of the pattern!

I made this one from 100% NZ merino which is spun a bit differently, almost like it is felted, and as it is on 4.5mm needles after the 18 rows of ribbing (I nearly died but it is soooo worth the effort!) is loose and comfy.

Hat Love.

It is so soft and merinolicious… despite an ever-growing pile of WIP’s and far too many projects whizzing around in my mind, I’m aleady halfway through a red possum merino one for KB.  A smaller one, mind, as her head is small, but that’s a post in itself!  (Coming soon, I promise!)

So my hat and I went out, 20 minutes later I sadly discovered that it’s still too warm to wear a hat so it ended up in my bag.  Two hours later I had accomplished this:

I’m going to knit them both at once so I don’t end up with one single sock, or single sock syndrome, which will very likely happen!  Hopefully in a few weeks I’ll have an FO to show you!

OK, well, I’ve blathered enough about socks, and I have to go and get dinner ready before KB gets home from work…. but before I go I want to show you a gift I was given by my dear friend Sandra, *thank you*… Ages ago I asked her to make me a knitting needle case, as she is a quilter… I was expecting a pouch really, nothing exciting, but last week she presented me with this case which she had made for me by an incredible Wellington artisan… lucky lucky me, thank you dearest! 

What a gift.  I had so much fun filling it with my needles, it is so flash it has front pouches for circulars and everything.

OK.  Dinner.

Have a beautiful day,


About Crochet with Raymond

I'm a crochet obsessed, reiki master, crystal healing, yoga junkie, counselling student, in a happy long term relationship... and Raymond's mum!
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44 Responses to Sock Boot Camp

  1. WS says:

    By the time you finish you socks and that lace project you’re thinking of, you’ll be able to teach me a thing or two!

    That hat looks really good – the colour and style suits you. And what a lovely present from Sandra!

    Glad you are feeling better!

  2. Blossy says:

    Those socks are going to look fantastic when you’ve finished! I love, love, love the colour!

  3. Nikkole says:

    I am glad you are feeling so much better Alice! I love the idea of making fun colored socks🙂 such a great project for the winter months coming your way. I can’t wait to see how they turn out! Your hat looks stunning on you by the way! I bet KB will love her socks and hat 😀. I do have to say that I am so very jealous of your needle case! The pattern is so wonderfully upbeat!

  4. Cathy says:

    Should I admit that I have never knitted a pair of socks or have any desire to? BUT I love seeing everyone else progressing and the wool- oh that wool, it would have to be rainbows for you!
    Glad you are better and sharing the colourful rainbow love again!

  5. Hello Alice, Love the hat, Love the socks, Love your mum….. 🙂

  6. Regula says:

    Socks are wonderful in two ways. It’s fun to knit them and it’s a pleasure to wear them. Ijust looked at a book I bought three days ago (Sunday morning pleasure) with some lovely socks in it. I want to knit a pair immediately. Howerver, there is the pink sweater to be finished first.

    Wonderful Sunday!

  7. Karen says:

    Before I go and visit your mum(!) I just have to say the coloured wool for your socks-to-be is so gorgeous, I must track some down here in UK and have a go – made socks in my teens LOL! made lots of things way back then! Can’t wait to see KB’s red hat and your merinolicious looks just that well done Alice, glad you’re feeling better,
    hugs Karen xxxxx

  8. Maaike says:

    wow, you are indeed very lucky with that beautiful needlecase!
    Enjoy your dinner, I am having breakfast, haha.
    love, Maaike

  9. Sarah says:

    So glad to hear you are feeling well again and LOVE LOVE LOVE the sock yarn *swoon*

  10. Penny says:

    Oh I just adore that sock wool, you’ll have rainbows on your feet. I wish I could find time for sock knitting as a certain little someone with sharp teeth has put holes in several of my existing ones! I find that having two pairs on the go in completely different colours helps the one sock syndrome. Of to visit your mum now! Penny and Higgins xxxx

  11. Jude says:

    Glad to hear you’re feeling better. Hmm, been there, done the 1 sock knot thing, but have always fancied another go as I’m older and wiser now!! The hat is wonderful, any pattern you could lead us too?
    I’ve knitted my first t-cozy, thanks to you and your wonderful tutorial, I ‘m still waiting for ‘the book’ to arrive so I can start on the embellishments…
    Take care, I’m off to look at your mum’s blog now.

  12. Margaretha says:

    I just love the colour of your new sock yarn it is so fresh and Spring looking!

  13. Tickety-boo says:

    Thank you so much for the lovely mention of my blog Alice!
    I would really recommend getting in to the habit of making two at the same time. I get drawn by the beautiful yarns and I KNOW I would have one sock syndrome. What a gorgeous choice of yarn you made! That really is beautiful I have yarn envy😉
    I have just cast on pair 3 (when I got cross on my Perfect Cardi) I’ll pop them in my blog post later. They’ll be my first pair with a design in them.
    I warn you it’s addictive!!!!
    I’m off to your Mum’s blog now.
    Thanks again for your sweet words.

  14. miek says:

    well, you`ve done it!!!!!!!! How horrable, i don`t want to knitt, blaaaa
    but seeing your mum`s socks, oke and your starting project oke, i have some opal yarn so no excuses for me now. sight….
    but first i have to find some knitting needles, i have reasendly giving them away when they where included whit yarn i bought. (cose i would never ever going to knit again and never ever socks because i don`t know how, i thought)
    well, i`ll let you know the result of work after my vacation over a few weeks (i suddenly dont want to go caravaning enymore hahahaha)
    oh well, i`ll survive i`ll think….

  15. Dori says:

    Glad to hear you’re feeling better! I too have just jumped on the sock bandwagon. I can’t make two at once, so you’re ahead of me there. I finished my first and was so proud that I haven’t got single sock syndrome though. You picked some gorgeous yarn for your first socks. We have Opal at my LYS, so I’ll have to look for that colourway.

    I love your hat! Hats are fun🙂

  16. Carol says:

    Morning Alice, glad to hear to are feeling better.
    My memories of sock knitting are from my schooldays, bottle green, itchy wool; fights with the heel turning bit ……………. as you can imagine I haven’t made another pair. However, that lovely rainbow wool might even have tempted me to have another go.
    Love your new needle case.
    Carol xx

  17. Hahnsmum says:

    Aaawwwhh that wool for yr sox is JUST SO PRETTY..Cant wait to see the FO.. So pleased to hear you are back in the land of the living & knitting like mad again..Best Wishes, Pam C..New England, NSW, OZ

  18. penelope dubois says:

    I am excited about Socks again. Just needed a little inspiration.
    Gorgeous yarn and your hat is stunning. Glad you are back to feeling yourself.
    I am going to watch a video tutorial that shows the “Afterthought” heel, from the “KnitGirllls. Sounds like a neat concept!
    I know I have seen that hat pattern, is it a Ravelry one?
    Now I am off to read about your Mum!!! Penny xx

  19. Lucy says:

    I love your socks in progress, I have made one pair of socks, and they are bulletproof made with handspun hebridean fleece. I wanted to draw your attention to a fibre and Yarn giveaway, by my cyber buddy Helen, I know you have an eye for fibre and are tempted to get spinning. There are twelve blog prizes I have linked from my blog to Helen’s for details of how to enter and she assures me entrants are welcome from all over the globe🙂

  20. monique says:

    hello Alice,
    i am happy to read that you are feeling much better. i was also very sick last week, coughing and sneezing and not sleeping other than little naps in between sewing a bit and doing some crochet. I also ended up with a sore peeling nose, but the happy thing of my being sick the whole week is that i discovered your beautiful blog and that was worth all the sneezing and coughing. Had i not been so sick, i would not have spend so much time on blogland. your socks will be amazing, i really should go back to knitting some more ( will have more time during the summer season ) but for now, i am so awfully busy working for my etsy shop. your posts are a joy to read and i am eager to learn more about you and Raymond and all your beautiful knitting and crochet.
    sending love,

  21. Robin says:

    Hi Alice, I popped in to say hi to your Mum. She looks so lovely and I love the shop and all the different items on display . Boy, have you been busy. So glad you are feeling better and wow, are you on a roll now. Love the hat and the socks are going to be awesome. Great yarn, how do you do 2 at a time? You must have to have 2 sets of DP going?!? Hope your dinner is delicious, I am just having breakfast! Love your BLog!

  22. Faye says:

    That needle case is spectacular! I love your hat and can’t wait to see how those rainbow socks knit up. And I especially love the tradition of birthday socks. My daughter’s birthday is tomorrow, and her sister’s isn’t till January, so luckily I’ve got almost a year for that! I must confess, though, I’ve only had one pair of socks turn out right, out of the three I’ve attempted. I’ve kind of been off socks ever since, but now I’m a bit more interested. PS- Having a flower shop that sells yarn sounds like the loveliest business…add a little chocolate and coffee, and it’s perfect.

  23. Hannah says:

    Your socks will be beautiful — lovely color. I like to do mine using the Magic Loop method. Your hat is also terrific. Can you share the pattern with us? I see that you come from a talented family. Your mother’s shop is wonderful. Happy Knitting/Crocheting to you!!

  24. Teje says:

    Hi Alice! I read your post with my sunday morning coffee as usually, but then I had to run to work, so I’m back…your hat is great, that needle case is really beautiful and your socks are going to be so beautiful! Good luck for your new carieer! Your mother’s blog is really good. I go to say hello to her.
    xxx Teje

  25. Mich W says:

    I loved this post, I remember when my Gran told me about when she was a girl knitting socks for the soldiers in WW2, she used to put little notes in them to make the soldiers smile. She was the one who taught me how to knit socks and now I can’t stop…good luck with yours.

    By the way, I’ve been reading your blog for a couple weeks and I love your life. Thank you for sharing it. Oh, and don’t be shy with sharing the Raymond photos, I adored the ones of him on your chair, so cute!

  26. moleymakes says:

    Oh wow, that colourway is just so beautiful. I can’t wait to see the finished pair. I enjoy knitting socks I tend to knit up a few pairs as Xmas pressies. I’m going to have to see if I can get hold of that colour here in the UK. Oh dear, I have the urge to knit a pair now🙂

  27. Meredith says:

    Hi Alice, Good luck with the socks. I tried them several times and I just thought it was so much knitting to make so little progress. I love the ones I made, but now have sworn off socks forever. I just gave four sock books and yarn to a sock knitting friend, had I known you wanted to try them I would have sent them to you! I Look forward to seeing your finished socks, I know they will be beautiful.
    Have a lovely day,

  28. Hesian says:

    it’s so neat seeing your knitting projects but also sort of sad, since I am just incapable of knitting (oh how i’ve tried). I miss the crochet!

  29. Joanna says:

    Love your sock wool – absolutely gorgeous rainbow colours. Also your knitting needle holder is lovely with all its little pockets. I got a sewing machine for christmas and my first project was a crochet hook holder. It took me hours to make and isn’t perfect but I love it and use it very proudly. I do want to make one for my knitting needles eventually ( that will probably take all day LOL). So pleased you are feeling better. Joanna xx

  30. Elaine says:

    Glad you’re feeling better Alice – love your boot camp hat -exactly what i’ve been looking for! thankfully we’re heading into Springtime, so will give me a few months to master the knitting (and ribbing!) Elaine x

  31. Maria says:

    Love the Opal yarn and I’m very curious about knitting 2 socks at once. I made a couple of pairs from a kit about 6 years ago, but it was 8ply and they were more like bed socks, so totally lost interest.
    Your new hat looks great – pattern and KB’s sizing too please. I would like to make something similiar for daughter who has a small head 🙂

  32. Angela says:

    Alice, the very best thing for a sore-peely-red nose is to slather cold-sore cream all over the sore-peely-red bits. Sounds weird I know, it’s something my Grandmother always told me and it works – incredibly well!
    Glad you’re feeling better. :>

  33. Sandi says:

    You are so lucky to look good in a hat, I look pretty rough which makes me feel a little bit sad as I would so much love to wear one….. good on you for knitting sox, your mum sure is the sock ninja, knitting ninja all around.
    Love that needle wrap too, beats my hard plastic thing.
    x Sandi

  34. Debbs says:

    Hi Alice, well now you’re into sock production you MUST visit Melody at her blog she is the Queen of socks and a knitting ninja. She does lots of things, quilting, painting etc but if you go through her history you’ll find LOTS! she regularly takes toes or heels off and reknits them if she finds a better way or just for Fun!!!! I know – mad! Anyway I’ve been following her for years, I’m sure you’ll love her knitting. Have a good week, Debbs

  35. Cyd says:

    I love love love your blog and of course Raymond.

    I hope you don’t mind but I’ve passed on the ‘stylish bloggers award’ to you.

    Cheers Cyd

  36. Pati from London says:

    Hiya Alice!! I love your new sock yarn, it’s really fab!! I wish I could knit and make socks as I love wearing funky ones with my Converse shoes…. Look forward to seeing your ta-da and a pleasure to meet your mum, x Pati

  37. Melissa says:

    Yea! Glad to hear you are feeling better! I can’t wait to see your socks when they are done! Love the look of them so far. Your hat looks nice and warm. Don’t worry, you’ll be able to wear it sooner than you think🙂 Stay healthy!

  38. Eve says:

    Beautiful sock yarn! I can’t wait to see the finished pair! What a lovely gift from your friend.. that is something you can use and treasure for years to come!

  39. Teresa says:

    new to your site and just love it, loving the hat and wondering if you might share the pattern, thanks, Teresa

  40. Patricia says:

    Love your socks. I really love your hat too. Could you please tell me where to get the pattern for your hat. Thank you, Patricia

  41. Debbs says:

    Hi Alice, just another quickie – have you heard of the book “I can’t believe I’m crocheting socks”? Have a look on Lindamade’s crochet blog for an interview with the author about crocheting socks – Linda said she had a pair made in 2 days! I’m sure you’ll know Linda as well, she is the author of Crochet Adorned amongst other things! luv Debbs xx

  42. OMG, it has a name and I am suffering from it : the single sock syndrome!! It has hit me in January and I need a cure. It is worse actually as it really is the 3/4 of a single sock syndrome as I haven’t been able to bring myself to actually finish it. How clever of you to have started knitting both at the same time! I feel a bit lame now…

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