It’s been a while since my last pattern release so I am extra excited to share my new pattern with you! This one is an ode to my new home of choice, this beautiful place in the middle of the South Pacific, where summer lasts all year long, (sometimes even with snow and ice), penguins, dolphins and whales share your surf and where the sheep-to-human ratio is 5:1. Sweet as!
Welcome to the Land of the Long White Cloud, Aotearoa, New Zealand, where Flip-Flops are called ‚jandals‘ (Japanese sandals! It makes sense, right?) and are worn year-round.
These socks feel like a proper NZ summer: Besides a cute and funky split toe to make room for your jandals even in winter, these socks feature a sweet as wave pattern on the leg, just enough colourwork to keep things interesting but not too much to give you a headache while knitflixing at night.
This is an ideal project for your summer knitting and a quirky addition to your standard socks drawer to remind you of those sweet as summer days!
Buy the pattern on Ravelry (Pssst, did you know that you get 10% off all my patterns if you buy three or more patterns at the same time on Ravelry? No code needed!)
For this pattern I teamed up with Jo Campbell of Yarntherapy NZ, who picked the perfect Kiwi as colour combo on the softest and squishiest yarn base ever for this very Kiwi pattern. Her Trust Sock yarn made coming up with this pattern so easy! The blue of Byzantine includes all the shades of blue our waterways can show off and the cracker of a sunny summer day Toffee Crisp gives the perfect contrast, just like a lazy day on the beach, don’t you think?
I learned a new (for me) technique to knit the toe section: The ladderback jacquard for Fair Isle, which I explain step by step in this photo tutorial.
Fair Isle always looked very intimidating for me. Two coloured stranded knitting in the round might look nice from the outside, but scared me when I had to make it. While I always very nearly broke my fingers while trying to work with two strands and to make the inside look nice and not too tight, I could really have used someone to teach me this technique. Instead of having the contrasting colour poke out every now and then on the right side because you twist the threads around each other, you create a neat little net on the inside of the sock, that is anchored on the inside so it does not feel awkward while wearing it and is super easy to knit, too!
I also like the added extra layer to cushion your balls of your feet for extra warmth and comfort.
On the un-blocked socks you can barely see where the net is anchored and these minuscule marks vanish in the blocking process.
If Fair Isle still seems too much for that short section for your taste, you can stitch on the jandal part using the duplicate stitch after completing the socks. Easy as!
I had heaps of fun knitting up these socks and they are even more fun to wear. Especially when everyone who sees them cracks up and goes: “These are some Kiwi As socks, mate!”. I love you, New Zealand.
About the pattern:
The socks are worked top down in the round and are described with a boomerang heel using German short rows, although you can swap the heel for any heel that you like.
Techniques used are:
- Stranded knitting – Fair Isle
- knitting in the round
- simple decreases
- reading charts
- Grafting (alt. 3 needle bind-off) for closing the toes.
What you need:
- Approx. 100g of fingering yarn in the main colour and 20g of contrasting colour of the same yarn. I used Yarn Therapy Trust High Twist Merino (365m/100g) in the colour ways Byzantine and Toffee Crisp for my socks.
- 5 double pointed needles not larger than 3mm (I use 2,5mm needles and go up a size for the Fair Isle parts).
- 2 stitch markers
A massive thank you to my wonderful test knitters and proof readers Binle, Meise , Owl-knitting, sylie and Suzieqtee.
Have fun knitting!