-By Chelsey Wilson-
Wow, I cannot believe it’s been nearly 6 months since our last journal entry. It feels like just the other day Kaylin came to intern with FEAT. sock co. The second half of 2017 was just a massive whirlwind of exciting adventure and hard work. What better way to celebrate an updated journal, than by telling you about our most recent sock collection, inspired by a breathtaking adventure that I had been dreaming about for at least four (maybe five) years.
I think ever since I first opened up my Pinterest account, I had been drooling over pictures of beautiful Iceland. The unfamiliar and untouched natural beauty and wide open spaces, along with the cute, cabin-like architecture and the idea of spending a few weeks silently absorbing all of this magnificence, wouldn’t leave my mind, and the top of my travel bucket-list. So, at the beginning of 2017, I started planning my trip to the island in September. I told myself I didn’t even care if no one could join me. I was going! It was now or never! But, I’m glad I managed to convince two wonderful friends, Saul and Kelley, to join me. To be honest, it didn’t take much convincing…they’d apparently been excited over the prospect of visiting the island themselves, for a while.
Iceland has a ring road that loops around the whole island, and no public transport like trains or buses to explore via. So we decided to hire a camper van and explore the country by setting our own pace, road tripping and camping along the way. This was one of the suggestions that kept popping up on travel blogs too, and rightly so. It was incredible! Every day we took turns driving from waterfall to glacier to hot spring to lava field. I’ve never had so much sock-inspiration generation (my new terminology) in my brain on any other trip I’ve done in the past.
We were there in Iceland’s autumn, which made me even more sure than ever before that an autumn colour palette is definitely at the top of my colour inspiration list. And I’m not sure there’ll be any colour palette as beautiful as that of Iceland in autumn. While munching car snacks and driving from one point of interest to the next, I couldn’t help but regularly gasp at the captivating beauty. I’m pretty sure I mistakenly spat quite a number of Oreo crumbs around the camper a few times. I can’t quite put this experience into words, it feels like it all falls short. But hopefully some of my photographs below and the sock designs they inspired, will give you some idea of the incredible place and wonderful experience we had travelling around this amazing island. Below the pictures, I will give some explanation into what we saw and the sock designs these sites/experiences inspired.
On our first two nights in Iceland, we stayed in the wonderful capital of Reykjavik. We spent the first night there exploring the quaint city-centre. Someone had mentioned that it wasn’t the most exciting city, but man I loved it! It’s incredibly eclectic, partly because of the architecture, but also due to the cute little art, design and photography shops scattered here and there, along with buzzing coffee shops and bars. On our first full day there, we took a snorkeling tour which was about 45min outside of the city centre. It wasn’t ocean we were snorkeling in, but the crystal-clear, fresh water found in the rift between the Eurasian and North-American plates. The water was freezing cold, so we had to wear dry suits, gloves and booties with our flippers…but our faces bore the full brunt of the icy water. The gloves weren’t as thick as our dry suits, so by the end of our snorkeling tour, I felt as though my fingers would crack off from the biting cold, but it was so worth it! There isn’t any life in the water, apart from a luminous green and yellow algae that floats around you in swishes and swirls. It felt almost as if I was at an underwater trance party. The colours were electric. I hope I managed to capture even a little snip-bit of this beauty in my Snorkeling sock design.
The ‘Camper Adventure‘ sock design is simply an ode to the wonderful experience I had road tripping and camping in this snazzy vehicle with two of my favourite people. After our trip, I knew even more so that I’d love to have a van like this to explore more of South Africa with some more of my favourite people. I added these two little phrases – “An adventure is always a good idea” and “Exploring new places with old faces” – because they’re reminders to me that I should take up any opportunity possible to explore new places and go on adventures, even when my analytical and introverted brain tries to talk me out of it sometimes due to semantics. It was so good for my soul. And it was so special to meet two old faces and share this special experience with them. Kelley, I’ve known since Grade 9, and she now lives in the UK. Saul is from Australia. We met in a backpackers in Barcelona in 2012. It was amazing to me that I had the opportunity to connect with these two special friends from different seasons of my life and two opposite ends of the globe in one magical place. Sharing the front of the camper van with them, laughing, dancing and singing, as we drove from one awe-inspiring site to the next, was so special.
LIGHHOUSES & PUFFINS
While we didn’t actually get to see Iceland’s cute little puffin-birds due to it being the wrong time of year, we saw many iconic lighthouses, which inspired this Lighthouses & Puffins sock design. I loved this design so much, that I used it as part of FEAT. sock co.’s new range of gift-wrapping that can be added onto your order of these funky socks for R10 (also see Planters and Townside designs).
HOME AWAY FROM HOME
Iceland is known for their cute, stocky horses that can be seen all along the road side as you travel around the island. The horse you see in that first picture reminded me so much of my old pony Legend, who we had to say goodbye to two years ago. Stopping to say hello to him and remembering Legend’s soft, fluffy muzzle as I stroked this new friend’s one, made me feel almost as if I was home in this foreign place. There are certain things that come so naturally to you, like knowing how to interact with these gentle giants when you’ve been interacting with them for most of your life. That experience, coupled with gazing desirably at the quaint Icelandic houses that I wish I could just live in for a short while, made me think of Iceland as a little home away from home for the eleven days I was there.
With this sock design, I tried my best to capture the sheer beauty of the autumn colours and vast, rolling landscapes we saw along the way. The shades of orange and coral, deep greens and reds, navy and browns left me breathless. This is probably my favourite sock design of the lot, because it is a reminder on my feet of the colours that left me smiling and shining throughout our trip. The rolling design features some lava fields in the foreground, followed by log cabins, and a waterfall pouring down a steep mountainside – this kind of scene was commonplace on our trip, even though it sounds/looks too idyllic/dreamlike to be true.
To purchase our cool new sock range, follow the link to our online store HERE. Alternatively, you can pop in at our sock shop in Muizenberg, Cape Town (33 Palmer Road), or visit one of our local stockists. We also sell the entire range every Saturday from 9am to 3pm at the Neighbourgoods Market at The Old Biscuit Mill in Woodstock, Cape Town.