New Pattern: Carved Stone Ball Socks

Introducing… Carved Stone Ball Socks, a new pattern by Sarah Foxley. I won’t mess about – you can find the (FREE) pattern HERE on Ravelry.

I asked Sarah about the inspiration behind the pattern, which features a textured stitch pattern, lovely comfy-looking heel-flap heels, and a star toe. The pattern is intrinsically linked to her job as an archaeologist and a visit to the Orkneys, so I will let her tell you about it.

“I have been knitting for about six years after being encouraged to take it
up during a difficult period in my life. My absolute favourite thing to
knit is socks so perhaps its no surprise that my very first pattern would
be for a pair of socks! I’ve even had people ask at conferences to see
what socks I’m wearing!

All four photos are copyright: SFoxleyDesigns (much appreciated!)

100_2040 (2)
I’m an archaeologist by trade and this has had quite the influence on my
designs. I’ve always been intrigued by shapes and patterns on objects,
particularly ceramic pots. It hasn’t been until recently that this
admiration took shape as knitting patterns.

100_2043 (2)

In 2013 I married my amazing husband Sebastian – our first Christmas
together he insisted I packed my knitting before anything else, whats no
to love? He desperately wanted to show me Orkney for our honeymoon so we
spent a glorious two weeks exploring many of the archaeological sites on
the mainland. The most famous is the prehistoric settlement of Skara Brae,
seemingly cut into the earth to shelter inhabitants from the wind. A rich
variety of objects have been excavated from the site but perhaps the most
mysterious are the carved stone balls. Similar balls have been found
across Scotland but no one seems to know what they were for. It is these
strange carvings that have inspired my very first sock design – Carved
Stone Balls.

close up

The actual balls are at the National Museum of Scotland (replicas are at
the Skara Brae visitor centre).


Carved stone ball socks are knit from the top down, the stretchy stitch
pattern, plus the option to knit the leg and foot to any length means that
they will fit most women’s feet. The ribbed heel flap gives the sock more
grip around your heel. The pattern is written for one size only – to fit
an average women’s foot of 7 – 9” / 17.5 – 23cm.

Milburn 4ply was a wonderful choice of yarn as its slight sheen reminded
me of the sheen of the carved stone balls. The yarn also afforded great
stitch definition – a must for such a highly textured knit.”

And you can find Milburn 4ply HERE should you want to!

Thankyou so much to Sarah for the insight; I’d love to visit Skara Brae sometime – having studied architecture at Dundee uni, it’s one of the first things they tell you about!

For more info on visiting Orkney, have a look at Visit Orkney, for a start and if you’re wondering what Skara Brae is, it’s Europe’s most intact neolithic village, and you can read more HERE.

2 thoughts on “New Pattern: Carved Stone Ball Socks

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s