patterned woollen socksas festive gifts
The village of Khinalig in Guba District, which is surrounded by the Greater Caucasus Mountains on all sides and charms visitors from all over the world, is not only distinguished by its unique language and lifestyle. It also has its ancient weaving traditions, one of which is the widespread craft among Khinalig’s inhabitants of making socks from coloured wool. The villagers, who are mainly engaged in rearing animals, spend a great deal of time in pastures, accumulating a lot of wool. Carpets, felt, colourful socks, bags made of carpet and bed covers are all woven from this wool.
Usually in two forms - short and long, these socks are widely preferred in both winter and summer pastures. Knitting dozens of pairs of socks every year in Khinalig families has been a treasured tradition for many years. Seasonal knitted socks were used as a means of exchange with other villages.
Since each family had its own sock pattern, these designs were usually passed down from one generation to the next. It is, therefore, possible to know in which family a given sock was woven based on the pattern. The yarn obtained from wool is usually dyed using natural plants. These sock patterns can also be found on carpets, and they even have their own unique symbols.
If you happen to be visiting Khinalig, pick up some patterned socks made from coloured woollen yarn to gift yourself and your loved ones a special present.