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Socklady Goes Solar!

We’re super excited to have solar panels now providing a majority of our electrical needs here in the office. Here’ an excerpt from the Green Energy Times about our efforts:

Solmate Socks, Inc. is pleased to announce the completed installation of a 5.52 kW solar photovoltaic system on their offices in Strafford, VT.  The system will provide an average of 80% of the electrical usage in the office, or nearly 700 kW hours per month.  As part of the corporate and environmental responsibility policies of Solmate Socks, the photovoltaic system is the latest and most visible effort toward sustainable business practices.  Since its founding ten years ago, Solmate Socks are proudly American made using 100% recycled cotton.  Recently, the composition of the product has improved to include recycled nylon and lycra, creating a 100% recycled product made in the U.S.A.  Catalogs are printed using FSC certified paper, product tags are made from post-consumer paper and all office paper is 100% post consumer recycled.  Zero waste initiatives have led to recycling of all office paper and cardboard, composting of kitchen waste and innovative ways to recycle all of the waste materials of the production process.  Socks not suitable for retail sale are used to make unique handmade hats.  Scraps from the hat making process are sent to an independent artist and woven into beautiful handmade throw rugs and placemats.  Sock seconds that cannot be used to create hats are routinely donated to charitable causes.  Working closely with the family-run knitting and yarn manufacturing facilities, Solmate Socks has also encouraged the recycling, waste reduction and energy conservation efforts of our suppliers and is even looking for ways to up-cycle the lint waste of production.

Installation of the PV system was completed by ReKnew Energy systems.  Please visit www.socklady.com, www.reknew.net for more information.

The One Shoe Blues

one-shoe-bluesWe just found out that Solmate Socks makes a tiny appearance in a video with B.B. King! A customer sent us a note this past weekend… While she was reading Sandra Boynton’s new book One Shoe Blues, she noticed one of our socks in a some of the pictures in the book. On page 22 and page 47 the Daffodil sock of ours is prominently pictured.

Sandra Boynton also developed the story in the book into a video with B.B. King. “The subject is pure fun that every child (and parent) can relate to, the story of a missing shoe. Sporting a lone green sneaker, B.B. King sings the “One Shoe Blues” while his faithful guitar, Lucille, comments here and there with those famous soulful blues notes. A supporting cast of sock puppets make brief surprise appearances—and, in the case of that saxophone-playing, rhinestone-sunglasses-wearing Momsock, grills B.B. on where he might have left his shoe.”

Below is a video which is a little “making of” for the One She Blues video with B.B. King.  Sadly, the uncontested King of the Blues isn’t sporting one of our socks, but you can see the Daffodil sock hanging from a clothesline in several shots in the video.

Enjoy the video, and if you’d like to read the book, you can order One Shoe Blues online at Amazon.com.

Sailboat Races & Fun Hats

Two of the crew members on the Kalitan V, in the Monhegan Race, Maine, summer 2009.

Monhegan Race summer 2009

I recently was lucky enough to make my first trip to Five Islands in Maine. Marianne’s famliy vacationed here when she was growing up (she actually used to babysit for the gentleman on the left in this image) and subsequently her son Randy (my husband) also vacationed here for a week or so every summer. The Kalitan V is docked at Five Islands and its owners, Doug and Anne, were kind enough to host Randy & me for a night on the island in their home. I’m glad our hats were able to keep their heads toasty warm during this summer’s sailboat race.

Mismatched is More Fun

newyorker-mismatched

From the New Yorker

Sent to us courtesy of our friends Don & Cheryl Olney of the company Louise’s Daughter. I love that we get fun mismatched cartoons like this sent to us. Thanks!

I was gonna just sneak a little sentence about this in at the end of this post, but then I decided it’s too exciting to not start off with the news that we’ve got a new product.  For several years we’ve been getting requests for ankle socks and I’m happy to announce that they are finally here, almost. We’ve been shipping wholesale orders with ankle socks since early June and we just took them to the wholesale trade show in Atlanta. So far the response has been incredible and soon we’ll have them available for everyone on socklady.com (but support your local economy and check your local store first to see if they’ve got ‘em).

Hyacinth Ankle SocksSnapdragon Ankle SocksPrimrose Ankle Socks

They are absolutely adorable and are a sock wardrobe essential. They go just over the ankle so they playfully peek out over the top of your shoes. A couple weeks ago I went to LA to visit my folks and we got in a day trip to Disneyland. I wore my new ankle socks all day and loved ‘em. Perfect in a pair of runners on a sunny day filled with lots of walking.

In other news… As I mentioned above we just got back from the AmericasMart in Atlanta where we had a great show. Seems unreal that the summer wholesale trade show season has already started, but it has. I’m home briefly before setting off for more shows in San Francisco (SFIGF: August 8 – 11), New York (NYIGF: August 15-19), and Seattle (Seattle Gift: August 22-25). If you’re a store owner I hope to see you there. If you have a favorite store that you’d like to see carry our socks make sure to let them know to stop by our booth at any of these shows so they can check out the socks and meet us.

In Atlanta we also got to catch up with more artist friends. Jan from Silk Bijou treated a group of us to another great meal at her house and then we had a great dinner the last night with Dan from Eye Think.  We were also able to spend some time with our friends Lisa & Bennett and meet their brand new daughter Elenor (who is probably the happiest and smiliest baby I’ve ever met… she has some seriously cute cheeks). I always end up picking up some fun gifts for me or other folks at the shows… In Atlanta I ordered some great looking clocks from Duane at Duane Scherer Studio (Duane and his brother David at David Scherer Studio are both such a hoot and both make great looking clocks). I also picked up some beautiful flour sack towels by French Notes (after Marianne saw what I got she went to get some too!).

That’s all for now!

wwkipA friend just sent this to me and I love it. A day devoted to knitting in public. This year it’s Saturday June 13. To find a public knitting event near you, go to the official Knit in Public Day website.

Absorba The Great BathmatNot that you should only knit in public once a year. Just yesterday I was at one of my favorite Portland area cafes (conveniently located just a couple doors down from the Twisted yarn shop) working on a pair of socks. I’ve been working on these socks for what seems like forever… but really I started them a long time ago and put them down to work on bigger projects. One I recently finished: Absorba the Great Bathmat from the Mason-Dixon Knitting Curious Knitters’ Guide (my current favorite knitting book) and I love the finished project. So cushy and comfortable, it makes me want to knit carpet for the whole house. For the bathmat I went with four strands instead of the pattern dictated three. That made it a little difficult to knit, so for the next one (and there will be a next one) I’ll probably just go with the recommended three strands. We’re about to remodel one of our bathrooms and I’m thinking red for that one.

The main knitting project I’m working on right now is way too big to haul around to various cafes. A large wool blanket just isn’t that portable. But I’m really close. Hopefully by the end of June I can do the final bind-off and post some pics. I have lots of traveling to do this summer (tradeshows with our socks), so I’m going to have to decide on some new, smaller projects to keep me busy on the road.

Two posts in one day! So in the mail today I got an awesome t-shirt. Maybe it’s only extra funny to me because I work with mismatched socks every day. But I love the concept of the shirt – that there are little communities of tiny people living under the dryer and they are the ones who take all the socks. It’s kinda like Fraggle Rock, but with socks.

The Secret Underground Sock PeopleAnyhoo… the shirt is on sale over at Noise Bot. I got mine for only $5 through their online outlet over at eBay, but it looks like they don’t have any left in the eBay store. You can still get one for only $12 through the regular Noise Bot website – which is still a great price for a super fun shirt.

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