Knitting Socks

I just finished knitting my second pair of socks and until finishing them, I didn’t understand why so many knitters enjoy making them.  The gauge is small so they take longer to knit. Why not simply buy them at the store!

My first pair of knit socks came out okay but they didn’t fit perfectly (mostly because I made the heel too large and they buckle under my shoes). When I came across this yarn — Online Supersocke 100, I decided it was time to try again.

The first thing I did was get a copy of the book, “Knitting Rules” by the Yarn Harlot, Stephanie Pearl-McPhee. In addition to laughing while reading her book, I found the chapter on sock knitting to be quite helpful. I read the section “A Good, Plain Sock” which demystified the sizing of the sock leg, heel and flap, gusset, toe, etc. For this pair, I followed her “step-by-step cheat sheet for socks” with a few changes:

1. I find that I knit my socks tight so I used a Size 2 needle. When I cast on, I used the German Twisted cast-on and knit using the magic-loop technique. I find this much easier than double-pointed needles and the German Twisted cast-on gave me a nice, stretchy cuff.

2. I used Method 2 “Sturdy Heel” for making the heels — On the right side rows, I slipped one, knit one across the row. On the wrong side, I slipped the first stitch and purled the rest. I did not make the heel square, as the Yarn Harlot suggested. My finished heel is slightly wider than tall (I was probably worried about the excess fabric I had in my first pair of socks) and they fit my feet nicely.

3. Finally, for the toe, I used Ann Budd’s suggestion in her pattern for His and Hers Socks. I found that after decreasing every other row for about 2/3 of the stitches, I decreased every row for the remainder.

Voila!  Here are pictures of my socks.  Now I’m finally hooked and am excited to try knitting another pair.  I want to try knitting my socks 2-at-a-time and knitting them from the toe up.  I hope this information helps if you, like me, have found sock-knitting to be sometimes tricky!

7 thoughts on “Knitting Socks

  1. Diane, I’ve knit exactly 2 pairs of socks. The second came out better than the first. They are similar in color to yours. Unfortunately they got put in the washer on a less than delicate cycle and something made a big hole in them! Very discouraging after all that work! Not sure how to repair it without taking half the sock out and re-knitting. It took the steam out of hand knitting socks! :(

    • Hi Judy, any chance you still have some of the yarn you used? Rather than re-knitting, I’d look at repairing the sock hole. There are a lot of great sites for knitting repair (I especially like an article on Knitting about this subject). Good luck!

      • Those socks look great Beth always does a nice job & awesmoe yarn doesn’t hurt! I’ve got two pairs of socks I want to get done this month a Halloween pair from my Bad Amy yarn, and a pair of monkeys in Beat Sock Blustery Autumn Day.

    • If I ever get to socks I’ll post pictures!At the rate I’m going it may be a year or two tguohh. :-/I never tguohht it would be this difficult!It’s not the stitch itself, it’s making all the stitches even.Heck, it may be next year before I manage a scarf!

  2. I *love* socks! They were also my gateway to lace! I completely agree, I’ve been Magic Looping for years, and I won’t knit socks any other way. I also recommend toe-up for vanilla socks, using Judy’s Magic Cast On (Knitty has it). I love the fit of an afterthought heel, but I find picking up the stitches a bit fiddly! There’s nothing like a pair of hand-knit socks in the winter time around! (I found you through Suzy Said!)

    • Hi Lissie, great comment. I want to knit my next pair of socks toe-up and will check out your method. I’m glad you found me through SuzySaid. If you get the chance, like me on Facebook. Thanks!

      • that is lovely!!!I’m in beewetn projects right now. Thinking another few sets of fingerless mitts followed by a scarf and then a hat? The hat will be for me. Is it bad to admit I’m still making Christmas gifts?? eeek.