Chittery Chattery Briggs & Little

I certainly love a good story. If it’s a good wool story, that’s even better. When I was asked to have knit with some Briggs & Little yarn, that’s exactly what I got. Having been operational for over 150 years, Briggs & Little is the oldest woolen mill in Canada. And this year the mill celebrates it’s centennial anniversary of being in the Briggs & Little families. You can read all about it on the history page of their website here. Very cool, right?

Aside from a rich history, I was excited to try this yarn simply because it has a reputation for being a really good, affordable yarn. I was given my choice of yarn to test drive, so I spent some time mulling over the loads of possibilities — reading reviews and checking out projects on Ravelry that had been knitted up using their yarns. In the end, I settled on this…

img_3013A skein of Durasport in Smoke & one in Rosewood to pair with Stefanie Goodwin-Ritter‘s Chittery Chattery Socks. Normally I wouldn’t knit socks from a 1-ply, but the reviews were very encouraging and it is a blend of 80% pure wool + 20% nylon so I expect that it’ll hold up much better than your average 1-ply.

My first impression is that these skeins are BIG — each 4oz skein has 430yards on it. It also has a pretty rustic feel. To me, the more traditional feel of wool totally plays into this whole image of a 150-year-old mill, 100years in the same families. It’s a little like a piece of history in my hands. In any case, I got knitting…

img_3102And by the time I was here — you know what I’m going to say — I knew I had a hit.

chittery chatteryAnd true to my other experiences with Stefanie Goodwin Ritter’s Conversation Socks collection — from which the Chittery Chattery Socks pattern hails — these socks were quick & easy & oh-so-fun to knit.

And the result…

toeI love the result.

toe + heelI think the colors are so sweet and fun — the contrast toe, heel, and cuff pop so nicely.

Let’s get a little closer to that texture, shall we?

heelsIt’s divine, I think. It looks almost delicate to me. At first glance you might think it’s stranded or more complex, but it’s so easy — just alternating colors and a simple every-other-round texture.

stitch detailThe color contrast is on the subtle side, but I think it works so well.

All in all…

entire sockWhat a fun & fabulous project!

The best part is that I probably have enough yarn leftover to make another pair of socks… or TWO. I’ll say this first foray into the world of Briggs & Little has not disappointed. It may not be cold out today, but when winter rolls around again these Briggs & Little socks will be perfect. In fact, I’m pretty excited at the prospect of another pairing of the Conversation Socks collection with this awesome yarn. I’m thinking maybe some Smoke colored Air Quotes and a quick pair of Rosewood Retorts. If at first you DO succeed, knit more socks in fantastic yarn!

For information on where you can find Briggs & Little yarns near you or to order directly from the mill please call or email Briggs & Little directly — you can find their contact information here. They’ll be happy to help!

22 responses to “Chittery Chattery Briggs & Little

  1. love the socks! And the story – there is always a story, right? I have a sweater’s worth of Briggs and Little worsted weight tucked away deep in the stash. Mom and I found the mill on one of our vacation adventures, as we wandered around New Brunswick years ago. We arrived at the shop just as a huge thunderstorm came through and the power went out! The lovely ladies were lots of fun as we wandered around through dim recesses of the store, dragging skeins that might “work” up to the front window to actually see them, then trying to find our way back to where they came from. Since I have a sweater on my 1+1+1 list, maybe I will dig that yarn out and actually knit from stash! Thanks for reminding me how great it is. 🙂

  2. The Briggs & Little, Chittery Chattery socks are very nice and now I’m tempted. I do wish there were more colors, but the rose and grey are nice. That’s one of Stephanie’s patterns that I didn’t knit. My Retort socks are kind of my go to socks in cold weather. They fit in shoes and slippers, and I often wear then to bed.

    • I almost went with the Denim + Smoke, but I do try to push myself out of my normal blues once in a while. 🙂

      You could look at their Tuffy yarn — it’s the same blend, but a 2-ply and it has more colors. Less yardage per skein, but if color is important it’s worth considering.

      I wear my Retort socks all the time, too. I love them! I definitely need to keep working through the collection.

      • I’m also trying to get away from so much blue. I’m not sure I can have too much blue, but sometimes I want a little variety. The rose and grey have been growing on me, but I have time to look a while.

      • First, I don’t think there’s such a thing as too much blue. Sometimes I do pick things are specifically not blue though just so I get a little variety. 🙂 It’s refreshing.

      • Of course I do! I have a good deal of sport weight sock yarn sitting around and another pair of Retort Socks are definitely on the agenda!

      • After knitting 2 pairs of Retort socks for myself, I knit a pair for my mother-in-law, as a surprise. She loves them and living in Wisconsin, they get a lot of wear. She would probably like a pair of Air Quotes this coming winter.

      • I would, too. Oh wait, I should probably get on that! And yes, I sure know that Wisconsin = handknit socks get a lot of wear. 😀

  3. I have been a Briggs & Little fan for years. No make that at least a couple of decades. Since before their fire. Their Heritage and Regal lines have been sweater staples, and I was introduced to them when Candide was discontinued (decades ago).

  4. The socks look great! Thanks for all of your kind words about Conversation Socks. I always enjoy seeing what socks you are knitting!

    • They are! It’s too warm for them right now, but we have a northwoods adventure coming up that I’m sure they’ll be perfect for — not to mention the upcoming winter.

  5. Briggs & Little is such amazing yarn. I’m so glad you liked it and are telling people about it. I love their Sport and have knit several sweaters from it (see my Ravelry account if you’d like to peek, I’m fibrefan3). It wears like cast iron and softens with use. I’d never thought of it for socks, but now I definitely will!

    • I actually got the idea from socks from Ravelry. I never would think to use a single for socks, but the reviews looked positive so I thought I’d give it a whirl. So glad I did & so glad to hear you love Briggs & Little, too!

  6. Could i please have the pattern for those socks. …i love Briggs and Little wool and the socks last…

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