Shell Cottage Socks from The Handmade Sock Society Season 2

Pattern review Shell Cottage Socks from The Handmade Sock Society Season 2

These socks had a long gap between casting on and getting finished, mainly because I wasn't sure about them at first. However, once I got going with them again I soon changed my mind and I love them now. They were the first pattern released by Helen Steward for The Handmade Sock Society Season 2, which is a club you pay for up front (£18) and then receive 6 patterns over the course of the year. Luckily for me there's no pressure to keep up and be done for each new release! Considering that most of the patterns I have liked so far have been by this designer, I took the leap of faith and signed up from the start. I'm pleased to say that I like all the ones that have been released so far so there will be more coming, but I am not a fast producer!

Pattern review Shell Cottage Socks from The Handmade Sock Society Season 2Yarn

I bought three different skeins of Coop Knits Socks Yeah! yarn at the Knitting and Stitching show in Olympia. (There was an offer for the three together). It's a yarn that is readily available for somewhere around the £6 mark (some stores are lower, some are higher). The yarn comes in 50g skeins and up until now, my socks have come in at about this level of usage so purchased three different colours. This pattern uses more! So I had to source another skein of this colourway, Axinite, to complete the pair. Luckily it is easy to find and came pretty quickly (in this case I get mine from Meadow Yarn). The yarn is specifically designed for socks and does a good job of it as well - I love wearing these!

I knit a size small and used 63g of yarn in total (normally I wear a UK size 4.5 shoe)

Pattern review Shell Cottage Socks from The Handmade Sock Society Season 2

Pattern and Instructions

Like I said, I wasn't sure about the stitch pattern on these at first. I liked the ribbing, but wasn't sure about how the pattern would feel to wear. Generally I'm not a fan of lacy socks and I was worried these would be too gappy. They aren't and once I picked them up again and knitted a good amount, I could see that they would still have a fairly comprehensive structure. I got the hang of the pattern repeat and this actually made it feel as though they were knitting up quite quickly. It's the first time I've used a heel flap like this one and I'm a big fan of how it looks too.

The instructions are written out so that each row is on a line of its own which makes it easy to keep track of where you are. It also includes a percentage completion with this in order to help you know how much yarn you will have left. The three sizes are separated out as well which makes it very easy to know how many stitches you need and reduces confusion. I knit the small size, which I found to be a good fit. I did go up from the suggested needle size, but I always have to do this in any case to get gauge.

I don't know why I didn't like these at first, because they were so enjoyable when I picked them up again. They are my first attempt at anything more than a vanilla sock and now I can see why patterned designs are so popular. The only thing stopping me from casting on a second pair is that I want to try out so many of the other patterns!

Pattern review Shell Cottage Socks from The Handmade Sock Society Season 2


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Welcome to Sewing and Other Stories; my journeys with sewing and knitting; pattern reviews, tips and guides for beginners. I'm also the designer behind West Beach Knits knitting patterns and I host a Knitting and Sewing channel on YouTube where you can see all of this in person. Come have a look!

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