Sunday, May 8, 2011

Danish Folk Sock

I knit this pair of socks for my sister's 50th birthday. My mother came from Odense and I was told that our great-grandmother lived in this house, which is now a museum.
The original sock is in the collection of the museum, I have not seen it, the pattern comes from this book - Bondestrik - strømper til mænd og kvinder. S.m. Lisbeth Green og Gitte Nødskov, Landsforeningen Danske Folkedansere, 1983. But I like the idea that a man or a woman has actually worn this star pattern on a dress sock 150 years ago.
The pattern on each side of the small of the leg is called "svikkel". And it was "designed" to disguise and cover the ankle knuckles. They are not particularly pretty, perhaps even ugly but the purl patterns transform your leg into a slim, delicate part of your body.
I cannot publish the pattern, however if you want to knit a pair like this you can follow this recipe:
Old Danish Folk Sock
You will need 100 g of fingering sock yarn in natural, blue, or black.
A set of 5 dpn needles size 2 mm or 2,25 mm
A vanilla sock pattern, there is one here on this site.
Cast on the amount of stitches from the vanilla pattern on four needles, and work the border from the Danish pattern.
Continue with stockinette stitch and seam pattern for a couple of cm. Skip all the increases and decreases.
Begin the "svikkel" pattern using this trick: the center of the first pattern is the first stitch on needle 2 and the last stitch on needle 3 is the center of the second pattern.. Remember to start from the top of the chart or turn it upside down.
When the "svikkel" is finished, enjoy your work, and continue with a couple of cm of stockinette and finish the sock using your vanilla pattern.
There is also a pattern for lovely red cap to go with the outfit.


  1. What a lovely sister you are! Oh, I wonder if I could get my hands on the book here in the US. Sock knitting has been added to shawl knitting as my secret obsession. Your socks are beautiful!

  2. What a lucky sister! Thanks for the links. I have used a similar star in the center of child's pullover. I think I found it in a knitted counterpanes book. I like to see how these motifs and variations of them work their way around the globe.

  3. Beautiful Socks! Your sister is lucky to have received such a gift full of history and story..they are heirlooms!

    Lovely! Esp that svikkel!

  4. How lovely...isn't that famous storyteller Hans Christian Anderson from Odense? One of these years I'll visit you,


  5. Such elegant socks - thanks for posting them!

  6. What beautiful, simple, classic, restrained socks. Less is more indeed.

  7. Hvor er de smukke Mette. Dem glæder jeg mig til at gå i kast med.Jeg vil også ændre hælen, så den er uden søm.


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