Traditional Socks

Traditional socks with history sheet—£4.99

Traditional Socks are based on the pattern I learned in primary school in the 1950’s, now known as mid-century! This pattern also tells the story of how they were updated in the 1980’s and knitted to order for one of the New Yorker magazine’s sports journalists who I met by chance on a transatlantic flight.

The heel and toe are reinforced with single ply linen which gradually works together with the wool, rather than wearing it down. We’ve knitted our socks in 2-ply Jumper Weight wool from The Shetland Wool Board. For a rib measuring 12 inches (30 cm) we used 4 ounces (100g) of yarn.

You can adapt this basic pattern by making the rib shorter or longer as desired and experiment with stripes, etc. on the foot.

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Linen for the heel and toe is available from

Handweavers Studio

You will need 50 grammes 16/2 unbleached linen per pair of socks.