A sock and a half

It's been a while since I checked in . Figured I'd share what I am currently working on.

They are my version of Vlach men's socks, based on am amalgam of many historic pairs I have seen. Originals are quite rare to find, and I 've wanted some for about 20 years, so I just realized 'well, make them yourself !'. Without having an actual original in front of me, nor any great up close pictures, I am taking some educated guesses on the different techniques used to make the different 'bands'. I think I got close. I 'll find out better this summer when I'll get to some museums. Tons of technical mistakes, but that's part of the learning process, right ??

Oh, and they are meant to go almost up to the knee, with the pants legs actually getting tucked into them. If any one is interested, I could post some old pictures of guys wearing these as part of their traditional dress.

Vlach men's sock
Vlach men's sock close up


ronhuber's picture

Beautiful work. Do you think you will be publishing the pattern?

Sara Katsan's picture

Thank you. yes, i probably will be publishing the pattern in the future. do people publish patterns here, or is that more of a Ravelry thing?

Bill's picture

ravelry would be the smart place to post the pattern...and link to it here...

cacunn's picture

Great I also am interested in the pattern.

Bill's picture

Beautiful! Why the metallic yarn?

Sara Katsan's picture

thank you. the metallic is traditional in these socks, especially for the 'fancy' version (i.e. for holidays) and most especially for the groom's wedding socks. It is a different aesthetic than our modern 'western' sensibility. rather than seen as being 'tacky', it is seen as higher value, a point of status even.

we first have to remember that these were traditional people, whose whole lives revolved around sheep(and to some extent goats). in this way of life wool, and cloth production are taken for granted as your wife, your mother, your sisters, your daughters all spent most of their 'free' time spinning wool into yarn and then creating the family's clothes. gold and silver threads, tinsel, beads, ribbons, etc were not commonly available and all had to be bought from a traveling dealer or from a far off city/town. therefore it was a) used sparingly, 2) used strategically and 3) was seen as special; valuable; exotic. I could go on and on, but I'll stop my 'researcher mode' now and switch over to practitioner:

i ended up using one type of expensive gold twisted cord on the first sock. on the second sock i am using instead some way cheaper gold satin cord, to let me see the difference and have an example of each. some people have already asked if i would make some for them, and since the cost difference in materials would be significant, I wanted to figure that out too.

here's a picture of some guys, circa 1918(?), proudly wearing their socks!
Vlach men Gramoustiani

Joe-in Wyoming's picture

What a delightful pair of socks! Thanks for sharing them with us.

Books, knitting, cats, fountain pens...Life is Good.

CLABBERS's picture

Lovely socks...so detailed. Please do publish the pattern. You can do that here, but of course, you can charge for it on Ravelry. Thanks for sharing this with us.