and putting them away for a bit. Socks are tough, and I have a lot more other things to knit, so I’ll tuck this goal away until I have more time and motivation. I’m sure I’ll be back, though; I’m going to get sick of flat things and mediocre hats. 12 months ago
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i tried on my own with a knitting loop… it was going nowhere… literally, the sock kept getting wider when i was supposedly making it longer…. it was a disaster. so i just undid the yarn. it was fun to try, but, really.. i need help from a live person, not the internet videos and written instructions. 18 months ago
How I did it: My grandmother taught me to knit socks a few years ago, providing me with some (4-strand, 2-ply each) hand-painted sock yarn, as well as five double-pointed needles. I've since made a few pairs, each in a different set of colours, and each for a different recipient, including a "twin" friend who lives across the country, my mom, and now my boyfriend's mom.
- I knit top-down from the cuff, starting by casting on 12 stitches onto each of 4 of the 5 needles. Next, I join the end to the beginning in a circle (making sure there are no twists) by knitting (with the same yarn from the end) into the beginning, from the first needle onto the still-empty (now working) fifth needle. The starting end (the "bitter" end) of the yarn can either be worked in at this point or left as a marker of where the circular rows begin. This first section is knit-1 / purl-1 ribbing, though I'd like to try knit-2 / purl-2 ribbing, which apparently has more pull (or stretch).
- After maybe an inch of ribbing, I start the pattern, which for this pair was just stockinette stitch (just knit-only, when knitting in the round). For this pair, there was very little (if any?) of this section.
- Next comes the heel, which is knit back-and-forth on the "bottom" (or "back" - just pick two that are next to each other) two needles (well, actually the stitches are combined onto one needle), leaving the stitches on the other two needles alone. The first two (or, in this pair, three) stitches in every row (whether backwards or forwards) are knit rather than purled, to make an edge of garter stitch on either side, for counting pairs-of-rows more easily.
- When there are 16 of these pairs-of-rows on either side (left and right) of the flap, knit 8 stitches in from the side, with the "right" side facing you (so you're on the outside of the sock, or ribbing-circle with a flap at this point). Now that you're 8 stitches in, knit 8 more stitches - these will form the bottom of the heel - except instead of knitting that last (eighth) stitch, combine it and the next (ninth) stitch by knitting two together. Turn the sock/flap around and purl (no "knit" stitches, this time) 8 stitches, but combining the last one with the one just beyond it. (You may want to turn these two stitches backwards before combining them, to improve the finished look of the edge of the heel.) Repeat rows like these two, knitting (or purling) 8 stitches (but combining an extra one in with the last stitch) until you run out of extra stitches, at which point you have turned the heel.
- After turning the heel, move back to using all five needles (rather than just two): Once more knitting (not purling) on the outside of the sock, knit the first four stitches onto one needle, then the remaining four stitches onto a second needle. Onto a third needle, pick up one "stitch" from each pair-of-rows on the adjacent edge, then knit into these. Knit (in the pattern) from the two needles you left alone before (while knitting the heel flap), each onto a separate needle. At this point, four needles will be in use, with only one free, so pick up the 16 stitches from the 16 pairs-of-rows using the needle that only has 4 stitches remaining on it, from the start of the circle, then knit into these 20 stitches.
- Next time (and each time after that, until you're back to 12 stitches per needle) around, combine two stitches by knitting two together on each side, just "below" the "top" two needles (onto which you knit the pattern). That is, leave an extra stitch directly before (or after, for the other side) the knit-2-together.
- This next section is just knitting in the round, in the pattern for 12 stitches per needle on the top two needles, and just knit-only for 12 stitches per needle on the bottom two needles, until you can try on the sock, and the end of it that's attached to the needles just reaches the end of your pinky toe.
- Once you've reached the end of your pinky toe, start the toe decreases: Every other row, knit two together once per needle, one stitch from (either above or below) each side edge (left and right), until you get to 4 stitches remaining per needle.
- At this point, combine 8 stitches to a needle (one for the "top" and one for the "bottom" of the sock, which should be apparent by now), and turn the sock inside-out by pushing the needles through the sock opening, one pair of ends at a time.
- Once the sock is inside-out, draw enough yarn through to work with for a bit, and figure out which end to knit. On a third needle, pick up one stitch from the front needle and one stitch from the back needle (both on the "near" end of the needles), then knit into those two stitches together as one stitch. (You may want to put them back onto one of the needles, in order to do this, or you may not have to pull them (these two stitches) off the two needles in the first place.) Repeat this until all eight stitches have been knit into.
- Finally, cut the yarn about 4 to 6 inches from where it joins the knit textile (fabric), and pull the end through the remaining loop, as a small knot. The very last thing is to thread this remaining bit through the eye of a darning needle, then bury the end. It's useful to have the sock turned right-side-out for this part, to know what the finished product will look like. If you left the starting tail of yarn hanging, you will have to bury that end, as well.
- Now the sock is ready for a partner. Try to make them match, as close as possible, in size (especially length) more than in number of rows.
Sunday afternoon at my friend’s house, when she was putting her kid down for a nap, I got to the toe decreases in the second (ankle-down) sock in this pair. Soon, I’ll be to the bind-off, and then there’s just weaving in the ends and I’ll be done, so I can give them away (to my bf’s mom). 20 months ago
I struggled along on my own with toe-up socks, but after two years go hemming and hawing and struggling and giving up, I threw in the towel and took a class.
And taking that one three-hour class was totally worth it! I’m a visual learner and I need to see things to understand them. By the end of the class, I had knit one tiny ‘training sock’ and I knit another at home on my own.
I’m signed up for a ‘top down’ sock knitting class in a couple weeks and I’ve already started on a full size toe-up sock using the techniques I learned in the class. I’m on my way! 22 months ago
Hooray, my socks are finished!
It took a while but they are so pretty!
On to new knitting goals :-) 23 months ago
I’m nearly finished with my socks! I hope to wear them next week!
And I still love the colorway :) 23 months ago
My second sock is growing, I’m finally at the heel!
And it’s about time, it’s starting to get cold :D 2 years ago
I managed to get my second sock into the sock-to-be stadium despite the heat!
I can’t wait to wear them. Well, ok, wear them once it’s colder
;-) 2 years ago
I’ve cast on a sock or two before but never gotten more than a row or two in before giving up.
I joined a knitting group and the leader gave me some handspun sock yarn and some size 2 DPNs and told me to cast on over two needles. That made all the difference. My previous efforts had been undone by the stitches being too tight.
I have about 4” of 2×2 ribbing. I’m hopping I’ll be ready to turn the heel by tomorrow night. 2 years ago
Hooray – I managed to finish my first sock! And I started the second one!
Isn’t it pretty? 2 years ago
Slooooowly the sock is growing :)
My fingers still hurt from the tiny needles, but I’ll get used to it.
Such beautiful colors! 2 years ago