One sock camp

We are having almost a criminally good time here, but I have to tell you, I think that like SOAR, Sock Camp may have a mortality rate. (Like SOAR, I believe the proximity to water is helping to cover this fact. If I had to guess, I’d say the bodies of the knitters who don’t make it are stripped of sock yarn, needles and useful notions and rolled into the sea by the Sockateers.) I’m getting tired, but I’ve got my wits about me and expect to survive.

Here are some things we have been doing.

1. Learning about socks. The classes (though I have only been in mine) sound terrific, and everyone seems to be learning a ton. (Hopefully, some of them are learning something in mine.) I want to take the class that’s just about different cast-ons really badly. Three hours….lots of different cast ons for socks. I have stolen procured the hand out, so I am learning anyway.

2. Tina made their “camp project” a toilet paper cover. You were to make it and bring it. I didn’t have time – (I ended up doing what I did last year, which was something with Cat Bordhi that we just won’t discuss) but the campers really, really stepped it up. They were so much better than I thought that I just couldn’t believe it. Some were just beautiful.



Some were just hysterical.


(This is “Crapotis” – note the appropriate stitch pattern)

Some were darling.


Some were literary.


This is Edgar Allen Poo, who is standing like that because he has just released “the tell-tale fart”. He is, naturally, in front of the house of flusher. Yes. I think that is very funny.


Then we had a day where we made little tiny sock monkeys.


I am delighted with mine.


Then last night there was a knitting relay race, a game with toilet paper I don’t want to discuss but left a large and strange mess, and then there was a game of “Can you knit with this?” To which the answer was a resounding






YES. (The beef stick smelled really funny and the knitter who got the piece of a plastic hangar and a drill bit did finish, but boy, that was a challenge.)

After that, Cat knit faster than me with turkey basters, and we called it a night.

Today, more classes, some underwater knitting (camera free event) and I have no idea what else. This is the strangest way I’ve ever spent five days, but I’m having a great time.

Last, but not least, it is Rachel H’s Birthday. She’s funny, clever, organized, knows everyone’s schedule, (though I am particularly grateful she knows mine..) makes kick ass soup, makes a thousand things possible just by breathing air, and is my friend, for which I am very grateful. She has my love and very best regards on this day. Happy, happy Birthday.

137 thoughts on “One sock camp

  1. I am filled with admiration for the toilet paper covers. Edgar is hilarious, but I think my favorite is the sock-knitting octopus! Wow, what an enormously creative and ingenious group.
    Happy Birthday Rachel H! Always a pleasure to read your comments!

  2. I told my sister 10 minutes ago that you were at Sock Camp. She covered her eyes with her hands and shook her head. “That has got to be the dumbest event ever!”
    I could barely spit out, “I would die to go to Sock Camp!” I told her you’d all be playing knitting games and having tons of fun among our peeps. She just doesn’t get it, looks like she’s not getting a pair of socks I “was” planning to make for her.
    Seriously, thanks for all the great pics and descriptions. All of The Blog not in attendance are very glad to know this week exists and we could possibly make it next year.

  3. Oh, you people are just making me sick! Why can’t I be there? What fun! Now, I’m inspired to make a whole family of little sock monkeys or an Edgar Allen Poo vignet.
    My poor sides and stomach. LOL LOL LOL LOL

  4. That looks like so much fun, love the toilet paper covers (never thought I would say that)! One day I will make it to camp…

  5. My body- (almost) 40… my brain? Obviously 13-because Crapotis nearly caused a waterfall in mah pants…..and Edgar Allen POO? TP covers art..and humor.. what more could a knitter need?
    I hope the knitters frolic will be half the fun;)
    Mental note Sock camp- sell a child to go….sounds worth it;)

  6. Really? You’re not gonna take pics of underwater knitting? I really want to see THAT! And hey! What about coming to California??!!

  7. Sitting here at work envying all of you. Someday, I will make it to sock camp. The toilet paper covers are sooo cool.

  8. House of Flusher? Bwahaha! The saddest thing is that I don’t think I can possibly explain the cackling coming from my office to anyone around me. Edgar Allen Poo…snort…

  9. Eeeee! I know who made Edgar Allen Poo! She’s in my sock group and I got to watch her put the whole thing together, from idea down to little Edgar and Annabelle Pee.

  10. oooh – what terrific creative fun! I’m going to use some of those ideas for our knit night ladies. tee hee hee. have a ball!!

  11. House of Flusher? Bwahaha! The saddest thing is that I don’t think I can possibly explain the cackling coming from my office to anyone around me. Edgar Allen Poo…snortgiggle…

  12. I am so completely and utterly jealous! Where do you sign up for Sock Camp? Seriously….how far ahead should I be planning? Like, sell a kidney now, or can it wait till Thanksgiving? Inquiring minds want to know! You are all having waaaaay too much fun. What a great time. Enjoy, you need this break in your craziness.
    Rachel H. – Happy Birthday!

  13. Oh my, this camp sounds like so much fun. Your sock monkey is mighty cute. Love the tp covers. Especially EAP.
    The original Poe said this:
    “There is an eloquence in true enthusiasm.”
    You all seem to be saying this at once with your mighty works of knitting art. Thanks for the post.

  14. Sock camp looks like so much fun! I really love the octopus. Your sock monkey is adorable too.

  15. Happy Birthday!
    And Edgar Allen Poo — too funny! Those are just so creative — if I attend a sock camp, will the ability to dream up things like this spread to me?

  16. Happy Birthday Rachel H. and Juno!
    Sock Camp – sigh, maybe someday. Have fun and keep up the reports when you can.

  17. It’s also my birthday which has sucked except for my son calling me from school so the theme for the project is particularly amusing. Hope Rachel H’s and Juno’s are better.

  18. Just looking at the tree TP cosie and not the caption, I thought it was the back of a man’s head with a pony tail. Then I read the caption and my brain shifted gears to see the tree. Sounds like a barrel of monkeys up there.

  19. I think that the best part of Edgar Allen Poo is the little knit girl in the background who has been rendered unconscious, possibly dead even, by the Tell Tale Fart. Little X’s for eyes. Really very funny!
    Knitters are so smart and witty! Even when they’re making juvenile farting jokes, they’re so clever!
    Very cute monkey too!

  20. The idea of a Sock Camp just sounds freakish, weird, and bizarre, but then it turns out to be the friggin’ coolest-sounding fun thing ever. Jealous!

  21. Oh. My. You ladies are beyond all doubt the most creative, most ingenious, and most demented people I have every heard of. Love the octopus! And, of course, Edgar! (I wanna go to camp!!!)
    This does, however, explain those mysterious sights on the Orcas Island web cam yesterday. So those were turkey basters???

  22. Happy birthday, Rachel H!
    I am desperately trying to figure out that first t-p cover. It looks to me for all the world like a dead, still-wet turtle draped over a roll of toilet paper that is being eaten by weasels. Please, whoever made it, if you’re reading this, forgive me: clearly the lack is in me. Also please tell me what I’m missing. I have a feeling that this is like the picture of a cow that you spend ten minutes looking at before you can figure out that it’s a cow, and thereafter you can’t understand how you could have failed to see it.

  23. Oh, and some of those flowers look like relatives of Audrey II. It’s me, really. And I’m clean and sober, unless someone slipped something into my lunch… that must be it.

  24. This is one of those things, like the rituals of sleep-overs, that boys just wouldn’t understand.

  25. Edgar Allen Poo! Snort, giggle! I am so much loving the toilet paper covers, but that one in particular tickles my funny bone. The underwater knitting sounds like a hoot too. Just how the organizers come up with all of this silly cleverness is beyond me. The rest of your tour will seem quite mundane after this week.

  26. What are the chances of getting a book together of all the tp cover patterns? I must say, Edgar Allen Poo has to be the best, except that I LOVE the Octopus! The miny sock monkeys are quite cute as well. Yes, it sounds like you are having a great time!

  27. Hippo Birdie two ewes
    Hippo Birdie two ewes
    Hippo Birdie deer Rachel and Juno
    Hippo Birdie two EWEEESSS!
    I would have never in a million years said that a TP cover was art until today. I love the tree one- almost too pretty for a tp cover.

  28. I really enjoy your tales about sock camp. Last year was a hoot, or I should say a cluck, and this year looked just as fun. Thanks for sharing.

  29. That all looks like a total riot–and I’ve got to tell you–we just did Edgar Allen Poe in my Junior classes, and they thought the toilet paper cover was hilarious!

  30. Thanks for sharing all this. It sounds so fun. And happy birthday wishes to Rachel and all the other wonderful knitters celebrating today.

  31. Perhaps it was all that talk of poo earlier in the entry, but I first read “underwater knitting” as “underwear knitting.”

  32. Happy Birthday Rachel H. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Love that you are having so much fun and are not even getting on a plane every day.
    I can’t decide which I like better: the octopus, or e.a.poo…both truly amazing.

  33. What day is today?
    It’s Rachel H’s Birthday!
    What a great day for a birthday!
    Let’s all have some cake!
    (birthday song lifted from Futurama, sung to the tune of the other happy birthday song)

  34. The crazy thing is, I just spent 5 days in a hospital where they won’t let me have my pointy needles (think padded rooms and lots of “talking”) so I knit with hemp cord and colored pencils. I think they’re about a size 9… ^_~

  35. Oh! I dearly love Edgar Allen Poo! And your sock monket is bestest cause it isn’t done in those horrid sock monkey colors….yours has Real personality!

  36. Hippo birdie, two ewes. Hippo birdie, two ewes. Hippo birdie, Rachel H. and Juno. Hippo birdie, two ewes! May your yarn never tangle and your needles always be pointy.

  37. Oh, you are cast on obsessed too?
    Speak Up–i’ve approached yarn stores with a class on great beginnings.. cast ons, cast ons, cast ons, and keep getting told there is no interest!
    (i know 40 or so.. 10 variations of long tail 5 of tubular, eyelet ones, magic, turkish, eastern, figure 8 types.. )
    I love learning cast ons!

  38. I, too, want a teensy tinsy sock monkey… did you steal, I mean, procure a pattern?
    Or would someone be willing to sell one? Is it in a book?
    We want, we want!

  39. Happy Birthday Rachel H!!! Oh, and I absolutely ADORE Edgar Allen Poo! That is endlessly brilliant! Where is the Raven? What is it quothing? And who is that lying beside the house with her hand over her nose? Brilliant!

  40. In my next life:
    I will have a job that allows me to attend fabulous sock weeks
    I will have the courage to tell my husband I want to go.
    Sounds like fun!

  41. I am so glad that sock camp is smack in the middle of your tour! What a wonderful way to rest and recharge. You all are having such a fun time and it shows through your knitting.
    Happy Birthday Rachel H!

  42. Happy birthday, Rachel H! And your sock monkey brings to mind, if you haven’t discovered that one yet. Gherkin pickles dueling to the death with their toothpick swords.
    Those are all just hysterically funny. I wanna go! (oh. wait. maybe that’s the wrong context to say that phrase.)

  43. [Not about sock camp–this is old blog.] I’m not a knitter but a lurker. [I can knit, purl, and hope before I die to knit ONE sock.] Two people in my choir are Knitters, constantly accompnied by socks or lace in progress. This week, On your October-12-2006 blog entry, I encountered a scarf that even I could knit. I mentioned it last night, and the Knitters–plus two Knitters that I didn’t know about–immediately knew which one I meant, raved about the one-row pattern, about the fact that it was the same on both side. All of them had knit it many times and warned me to be sure to get patterned yarn to get the full effect.
    I thought you’d like to know that your blog and your patterns live on.

  44. Oh, I love your sock monkey too much. It’s the curly tail and toothpick needles that have done me in. I must make one to guard me at work. Where might one find that pattern?

  45. I agree–Whoever came up with Edgar Allan Poo & the House of Flusher deserves both a knitting AND a literary award!!!!!!

  46. Happy Birthday Rachel H!
    I am dying of jealousy. Sock camp looks like so much fun!
    Correct me if I’m wrong, does the first TP cozy have a little tampon holder on the side? Brilliant.
    Crapotis! Edgar Allen Poo! What will they think of next?

  47. I think I may have snorted more at this post then almost any other. I love your sock monkey, and now must go stashdiving and figure out one for myself, which one of my boys will probably adopt, then I’ll have to make one for the other 2, then maybe I’ll get the next one. And the toilet paper cozies? Wow, just wow.
    And…Happy Birthday Rachel H!

  48. I got to watch Edgar Allan Poo and the house of Flusher evolve. The lady who created that is a lot of fun.
    It’s glad to see other people have that same kind of sense of humour. :)Glad to hear that you are all having such a wonderful time up there.

  49. wanted to say i love the sock monkey! who cute is that!
    and to say you sound like you are have a socking good time.

  50. I think you are being kineared in the sock monkey photo ๐Ÿ™‚
    Love annabelle Pee!
    This sounds like just what you needed…carry on!

  51. Maybe you could somhow link up Edgar Allen Poo the next time they talk about Colorectal screening before your spot on the radio!

  52. The TP cozy with Edgar Allen Poo and the (falling?) House of Flusher is just. plain, genius. My best guess is that the little figure lying beside Edgar is Annabel Lee. (And I am *so* e-mailing my husband this post, as he insists on calling our black cat, Edgar, “the Allen of Poo”. No lie.)

  53. Happy Birthday Rachel H!!!! I want to hear more about this “kick ass” soup of yours.
    I can see tiny little monkeys becoming the new sock craze. Any patterns you can share, or direct us to?
    As for underwater knitting, I’m speechless.

  54. Wah! I wanna knit sock monkeys and tp covers and knit underwater!!! Any chance you’d come to Texas? We have great weather in the winter so you can escape from the bone-chilling cold and snow of Canada…..

  55. Happy birthdaym Rachel H! I thought of ordering you some snow – y’know, for that festive sprinkling – but couldn’t get hold of the powers in charge. Sorry ’bout that. Hope you have a fantastic day!

  56. Happy birthdays to Rachel H, Juno and Anne-Marie (I hope the son came home with a premo gift for you!)!!
    I will never, ever think of toilet paper covers and crocheted dolls with big skirts again (and thank the knitting goddess for that). Everyone who made those just blew me away (er, not in the scatalogical sense, mind you). They were all fab!

  57. Oh it all sounds like such amazing fun! I wish I could have been there to learn the sock monkeys..they are sooo cute. Is there a pattern or is this just something really skilled sock people know? And a rousing Happy Birthday to all the birthday girls!

  58. Please, how does one get to go to sock camp? I haven’t found any usable results by Googling and it sounds just like what I need. I might even be able to wait until next year, if I had it as a carrot on a stick in front of me.
    Of course, I might wreck my chances by saying I’m not creative enough to design those wonderful TP holders, but just because of that, I’m in desparate need of Sock Camp.
    Please tell me how to get there!

  59. Happy Birthday to Rachel H. and Juno! Sock camp sounds fabulous…I sure wish that it wasn’t a whole continent away!

  60. Sounds like great airport therapy.
    Turkey basters? I’m afraid my imagination went wild at that point….

  61. I would love to make my own sock monkey. If there is any way you could get us the pattern, I think you would make a lot of people happy. Enjoy the rest of camp!

  62. The tiny sock monkey is the cutest! I too would like to know if a pattern is available somewhere.

  63. What, pray tell, is “ass soup,” and does one need to eat it near the crapper?

  64. Many Happy Returns of the Day Rachel H.. you have made my life better for knowing you. I hope you are enjoying some delicious cake today, or maybe some waffles (winks)

  65. You must share the name of your travel agent because you surely get to go to many of the best places. Between the great LYS in all the cities you visit, SOAR and Sock Camp, perhaps your next book should be the Lonely Planet Guide to Knitting Travel. I could be happy just following you from one fun place to the next.
    And learning great new cast ons would just be the icing on the cake.
    Happy Birthday to Rachel H., and Juno. Both of my daughters have April birthdays – the younger one’s is forever destined to be on the US income tax filing deadline (April 15). At least it is easy to remember!

  66. Rachel, I bet I know what Steph is going to give you for a birthday present…

  67. I really wish I could have gone to Sock Camp this year ๐Ÿ™ I’m going to try to get there next year for sure! Glad you guys are having fun! Those TP covers are great ๐Ÿ™‚
    Happy Birthday and Best Wishes to Rachel H!!!

  68. Oh my god. I’m howling: “Edgar Allen Poo” (Yes, I have an advanced degree in literature.) The knitter of that one deserves a medal!

  69. Happy Birthday,Rachel H. It’s a good time of year for a birthday. As you can see, lots of intersting people have birthday’s now. Mine was yesterday. Hope that get’s me in some good club.
    Stephanie, you do know that Cat demonstrates at her classes with giant prop knitting needles made from something like fat dowels, don’t you? She has useful practice for the turkey basters.

  70. OMG!!! This post is hilarious! I’ve never outgrown “potty” humor, so the two TP covers got huge laughs–and I want to make them myself, the octopus is great with it’s own little socks and knitting more, and the sock monkeys…we definitely need patterns here!!! That’s got to be the bestest, funnest camp ever!

  71. The T.P. covers are fantastic! I think Edgar Allen Poo is my favorite. I wonder if I could knit a T.P. cover shaped like a bug butt…
    It will have to wait. Most of my design brain cells and all of my lace brain cells are occupied with biology. I learned how to dissect out bug butts today. I dare say that’s the most delicate thing I’ve done, EVER. At least I get to talk about plant fibers tomorrow!
    I think your sock monkey is adorable and it sounds like you’re having a grand time of things.

  72. Happy birthday, Rachel H! And a happy birthday to Juno, too. Stephanie, I’m glad you’re having such a wonderful time. You really needed some fun time. No planes, no talks, no worries about pants……….. just fun. So many creative, albeit slight twisted knitters–my favourite kind!

  73. I have trauma from toilet paper covers. (it’s long standing, nothing to do with this post) At least these were mostly meant to be funny, that helps a little. (now I may have to call my therapist)
    I love the “Can you knit with this” segment, though, hysterical.
    and your monkey is splendiferous =)

  74. It looks like you’re having such a ball (pardon the yarn pun) – Good on ya!
    Laughing myself stupid at the toilet paper covers;
    Loving the mini sock monkey (echoing, ‘where might one procure this pattern?’);
    Admiring the awesome community and creativity going on, and
    Wishing fervently for something similar in Australia – one day!
    Aussie Jen

  75. My daughter, (another Rachel H., by the way), who has never wanted me to knit anything for her, looked at this post and said “You have to make me a whole army of sock monkeys!” Is there a pattern available somewhere?
    Also, I LOVE the Socktopus. I especially like how all of his socks have heels, even though he doesn’t.

  76. How cool is that~ I love the TP cover with the flowers. I may have to make that! Maybe my husband would replace it then, when empty.

  77. Dear Canadians-
    I am coming to Toronto for Knitters Frolic and Lettuce Knits More Big Girls Knit launch- please don’t let me wander the streets alone- I will need a chaperone or at the very least a Knitter to adopt me for a day. TraceyinMichigan on Ravelry…;
    HELP— don’t leave a knitter to wander the streets alone…
    PS this may very well be the craziest thing I’ve done yet for knitting…..) My pic is on the knittyblog…. if you see me-rescue me from my lonely wanderings….;)

  78. My favorite TP cover the octopus, very clever.
    Did Cat Bordhi create it? It reminded me of the octopus Cat showed on Knitty Gritty.
    Like the monkey also.
    Sounds like you’re taking advantage of some much needed ‘fun time’ while on your tour.
    Can’t wait to see you in Salt Lake City, Utah on May 4th.

  79. Sock Camp looks like so much fun. I wish I could be there. The toilet paper covers are great! The octopus seems so appropriate. Sometimes I think you have that many hands to knit with just to keep up! Happy Birthday Rachel.

  80. Is Sock Camp open to everyone? If there is one next year and it is open to anyone, my knitting group, Wooly Bullies wants to come…
    Is there a website for the event? Looks like so much fun!

  81. Sock camp looks like so much fun! Iwish I were there.
    And I have to echo everyone else with wanting to know where the sock monkey pattern might be found.

  82. A conversation with my 7 year old son went something like this.
    “Mom, stop. Go back”
    “Back to where?” I asked.
    “Up, up to the monkey. Isn’t he cute? Did someone knit that?”
    “Yes, as a matter of fact I saw her last week, the night it was snowing and really windy.”
    “Did you ask her to make me a monkey?”
    “No honey, she made the monkey after she left Minnesota”
    “Do you think if I give her my whole allowance she’d give me the monkey?”
    “No, I don’t think so. If you want me to, I’ll send her an email and ask her for the pattern.”
    “OK. If you knit the monkey for me, will I have to give you my allowance?”
    “No, you can keep your allowance.”
    “Do you think you can knit a monkey for Taylor and Tristen and William and I think Mrs. Sage would really like a monkey for her desk.”
    “Sure, but let me see if I can get the pattern first.”
    So, any chance you can add me to the list of those wanting the monkey pattern? Thanks in advance!

  83. I had not seen the tree at all, in the first of the toilet paper covers. Some knitters are too unimaginative to go to sock camp?
    I looked at the first picture and saw a tea pot cozie. From the reading, I thought, “Oh, that’s a tea pot cozie covering a ball of toilet paper.”
    Then I saw the brown holder (?) on the right-hand side of the cozie, and thought, “Oh, a toothbrush holder on the tea pot cozie … which is covering a roll of toilet paper.”
    Which seemed like a sensible combination – because toilet paper and toothbrushes are both found in the bathroom. (In North America that is. There is a better arrangement to be found in England.)
    It wasn’t until the second or third time of reading the blog and looking at the pictures that I realized tooth brushes and toilet paper (covers) probably don’t make that sanitary a combination.
    I might be unimaginative – but I make up for it by being gullible.
    Glad you’re having a good time. Janey

  84. SQUEE! What must I do to obtain a pattern for a wee, adorable sock monkey?! I know that the Noro socks I am currently knitting will have leftovers….

  85. I love the cozies. I can’t imagine making one but the Edgar Allen Poo won the award in my corner of the office.
    My husband would probably kill me if I didn’t add my voice to those asking about the sock monkey pattern.

  86. I love your sock monkey! I have one my Grandma Illa made me around 1960 (he is stuffed with cut-up nylon stockings, Grandma never wasted anything).
    We had a friend here this week who lives in Australia, grew up in Japan… she spotted my sock monkey on my shelves of stash yarn, and pulled him out and loved him deeply. I think I have a sock monkey to make. Soon.

  87. Am loving the stories about sock camp and wishing there was one nearby.
    Any chance of the sock monkey pattern being shared? I must have one!

  88. OK, the entire English department wants instructions for Edgar Allen Poo–and if the artist put it on e-bay, she could probably make enough money to finance next year’s trip to sock camp. I will simply join the clamor for the baby sock monkey pattern. You folks are fiber geniuses!

  89. Glad you are having fun. Jealous a bit too. I just figured out “crapotis”. Hee hee. Ok, sock monkey is too cute for words. Add me to list of pattern wanters.

  90. Wow – what creativity on those toilet paper rolls! Crapotis and Edgar Allen Poo – hysterical! For those looking for a mini-sock monkey pattern, I know there’s one on Evelyn Clark’s webpage:
    Oh, and I finally watched the youtube videos of those Yarnery Family Singers – You must have been so touched by that performance! They were fantastic!

  91. ohhh how I wish I was there with you! I’d be in sock (and other things) heaven!
    so, when are you coming to california????

  92. Firstly, Kudos to Quiara with her knitting ingenuity!
    Secondly, and I’m (almost) afraid to ask, what is that brown thing growing out of the Crapotis?
    Thirdly, I think I recognize the Mason-Dixon Ballband Washcloth design underneath that Octopus.
    We definitely need more pictures.
    Is that a tree on TP Cover #1? Or maybe a tornado?
    There is the makings of a contest here, methinks!

  93. any chance of posting a pattern for those little sock monkeys? The one’s I’ve search-engined just don’t come close in cuteness!!
    Btw, anyone got a pattern for a little dragon?

  94. don’t worry about the sock monkey, just read the blog entry above ๐Ÿ˜›
    I’ve a feeling Cardiff’s going to become heavily populated by these things very soon (as well as Nottingham Uni, they look like very intellectual sorts ๐Ÿ˜€ )

  95. I already miss sock camp. It was soooooooo much fun.
    Thank you all, Tina, Sockateers & staff….and teachers (Steff, Cat, Cookie A., JC and “The Mother of all Monkeys.”

  96. Sock Camp was incredible!!! Steph, you absolutely rock! Your sock monkey, with his argyle vest was adorable. The vest….all you needed was a “ya can’t get that done” and poof! it was done ๐Ÿ™‚ Still think you need your own sock blocker design – a Canadian maple leaf??? or perhaps a monkey??? Just let me know! Bunches of knitted hugs!!!!

Comments are closed.