Sunday, December 9, 2012


Vintage Please Knit Now poster, image courtesy of Imperial War Museum

Here is a really fun one.  It's a WWII poster from the UK. "Our Jungle Fighters Need Socks, Please Knit Now".  Love the image, the knitting needles with socks on the end.  I did some research and found an interesting back story.

During the war, Knitting was a very popular pastime for women (edit: and many men).  They were spending a lot of their time in air raid shelters and to alleviate boredom and keep nerves down, they urged them to knit socks for the soldiers.  Just as gardening and food storage helped citizens do their part for the soldiers, so did this.  

People could get patterns and even the wool by simply applying to the government council in charge of this program.  Isn't it fascinating to imagine how many warm and comfy socks must have been made like this?

Hope you are enjoying your weekend!


  1. Oh my gosh, how funny is this, I was just starting to knit some socks for some relatives for christmas! synchronicity! ;-)


  2. a great poster, amazing back story....

  3. Boys knitted, too. I know because my uncle later taught me a little bit about knitting, and that's how he had learned—knitting for soldiers. He didn't remember much :-)

  4. Knitting still IS very popular pasttime. I am working on a prayer shawl, a pair of boot socks and strips for an afghan my MIL started aeons ago. Love the poster!! I would frame it and put it up where I could see it all the time.

  5. I can contribute another WWII memory--in grade school in Schenectady, NY, we were all, boys and girls both, taught to knit and asked to knit squares to be made into afghans. Although my mother was a gifted knitter, I could not learn so she had to knit my squares at home. I have a memory of my classmate Pio Vendetti, a tall boy who, like me, could not carry a tune (we unfortunates were seated in a row in the middle of the class and told to keep quiet). But he could knit.

    Even when I was in college and knitting was popular with my classmates at a women's college, I could not participate. My mother said I was hopeless, and she was right.

    Knitting has always been a great mystery to me, and I remember with amusement one of my university students who said to me before class, "I've been so stressed lately that I spent the weekend relaxing." How?? Oh, she knit herself a coat.

  6. I wish I'd had the good sense to learn knitting from my Granny when she was still alive.
    But of course, I didn't have the patience. (Quite possibly not the coordination, either, but I do remember not having the patience.)

  7. Hi, here is another WWII story.... my Nan was in London during the war, and she often told me her stories of them all going down into the London Undergrounds during raids. Knitting played a huge part in passing the hours and she taught many a child to knit...yes, for soldiers. They had little 'camps' along the platforms and everyone knew who went where each time they ran for cover. During 'safe' times they would top up 'their' spot with more provisions etc for next time, and nobody would touch/steal anothers 'camp'. Children would be either scared or restless, so knitting groups were very popular - gender never came into it. Boys, girls, teens, toddlers would learn to knit or crochet something for the soldiers, or blankets for the Red Cross until it was safe to come up again.

  8. I've never attempted socks. I stick to rectangular or square things. :)


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