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Happy feet

February 18, 2009

When I first learned how to knit, the one thing I swore I’d never be caught knitting was socks. What was the point, I used to wonder, of spending time creating something so utilitarian, so workhorse, that no one was ever going to see?

But my sock stance has changed. Because now socks are:

  1. A cosy comforting knit when it’s grey and cold out. Your feet almost start to feel warmer while you knit them- could it be psychosockosis?
  2. Small, perfectly formed and portable enough to travel with, but densely packed with knitting interest so there’s never a dull moment.
  3. A chance to let your imagination run wild with crazy patterns you wouldn’t want wrapped round your head, neck or torso.
  4. An opportunity to buy and actually use those exciting and wacky coloured sock yarns that look great in a skein but you can only get away with wearing on your feet.
  5. A lesson in looking after something. When these get holes I’ll be darning them. Then I’ll be darning them some more.
  6. A happy moment when they get pulled out of the sock drawer in the morning and smoothed onto the feet, and a joyful reminder during the day when I remove my shoes and they hit the carpet like a spilled drink.

I’ve written up the pattern here: charybdis-socks1. Nothing in it is especially new or ground breaking- my socks have a basic toe up construction with a simple stitch pattern that winds across the foot and spirals up around the leg. There’s a very simple short row heel with no wrapping and turning.  I hope it’s helpful- if you come across any errors, please let me know. It’s on Ravelry here.

I’ve called this pattern Charybdis, after the sea monster in Greek mythology who belched out water in a menacing and deadly whirlpool. Originally a beautiful sea nymph, and daughter of Poseidon, the God of the Sea, Charybdis flooded land to enlarge her father’s underwater kingdom until Zeus turned her into a monster as punishment. Homeric myth tells us that Charybdis lay on one side of a narrow strait of water, while upon a rock on the other side sat Scylla, another equally grotesque and dangerous sea-monster. The two sides of the strait were so close that sailors attempting to avoid Charybdis would pass too close to Scylla and vice versa. (Even the legendary hero Odysseus was almost destroyed by Charybdis after narrowly surviving Scylla.)

The yarn I used for these is Socrates Merino Supersock by Violet Green, in colourway Kew.

If you make any socks from the pattern, do send me a pic- I’d love to see them! And watch out for those sea monsters…

Update: Check out my Knit Designs page for all four of my monster sewing patterns!


Happy feet! I’ve got those happy feet!
Give them a lowdown beat
And they begin dancing!
I’ve got those
Ten little tapping toes,
And when I hear a tune
I can’t control my dancing heels,
To save my soul!
Weary blues
Can’t get into my shoes,
Because my shoes refuse
To ever grow weary! 

Cab Calloway- “Happy Feet”

13 Comments leave one →
  1. February 18, 2009 8:34 pm

    Lovely pattern, hope they’ll be more in future!

  2. February 19, 2009 12:55 am

    I’ve really got to get on my knitting…

    Congratulations on your first pattern :) I love the name.

  3. February 19, 2009 3:54 pm

    hahah, when I first started sewing, I swore I’d never make underwear. Yet what am I just finishing up? oh yes.

    Your feet look incredibly happy, they’re nearly giggling!

  4. Pam permalink
    February 26, 2009 12:55 am

    What a beautiful pattern. It makes me happy just looking at it. I am trying despertly to finish two “partners” of socks I finished months ago, but … I might just have to cheat and start this pair – I won’t tell if you don’t. Thanks for the pattern.

    • glassoffashion permalink
      February 26, 2009 4:10 pm

      Wow, a double case of second sock sydrome, Pam! No, I definitely won’t tell- cheat away! :)

  5. Julie B permalink
    June 16, 2009 1:15 am

    I get cheerful on an earful of music sweet
    ‘Cause I’ve got hap hap Happy Feet!

    Love this pattern! I’ve got a ball of Four Seasons Hot Socks in a colour that I shall call Sea Monster! (greens/blue/grey) Perfect for this pattern :D

    • glassoffashion permalink
      June 16, 2009 10:54 am

      :D Sounds excellent, Julie! Come to think of it, wouldn’t a whole line of yarn in colourways named after different sea monsters be great? Kraken, Leviathan, Loch Ness Monster….er….

  6. Marion permalink
    June 26, 2009 4:04 pm

    How well do you think the Charbydis sock pattern and the Odessa hat pattern would “work” together?

    (I’m going for a matchy-matchy look!).

    I LOVE your name “charbydis!” Brilliant.

    I’m about to try it in “Happy Feet” sock yarn. Hopefully I won’t find myself between Scylla and Charybdis when I make it up!

    • glassoffashion permalink
      June 27, 2009 10:59 am

      I think Charybdis and Odessa would work brilliantly together- what a great idea! Whirlpools galore! If any sailors start looking askance at you and edging away as you pass, you’ll know why…

      What a coincidence you’re using Happy Feet yarn :) Hope your Charybdis turn out beautifully and make your feet very happy indeed.

  7. Lee Ann permalink
    December 8, 2010 1:11 pm

    How do I get to the pattern? Thanks.


  1. Sockmania continues « Dyoselin
  2. FO Friday ~ Charybdis Socks | Pixelknit's Ponderings

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