Scary Sock Stuff

By Kay Gardiner
July 23, 2019

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29 Comments
  • I am working on my socks and am loving the learning of new stitch patterns as well! I put a stitch marker at the beginning and end of the pattern changes so I don’t forget. I would just keep going and constantly have to tink back!

  • Your sock collection looks fabulous!

    • After 50+ years of knitting I have just tried making my first pair of socks! While I totally undid the entire first sock after reaching all the way to the toes (knitted much too large), I was encouraged to try again by your amusing posts. Thanks for inspiring me to give it a try finally.

  • Brava! Field guide 11 has me back in love with sock knitting, yet I’ve thus far successfully put off learning the fiddly provisional cast on for toe-up socks. It terrifies me. Perhaps for my next pair I’ll follow your brave lead!

    • Judy’s Magic Cast On for toe up isn’t a provisional CO. Just cast on and continue knitting!

    • An easy toe up cast on is the Turkish cast in. I could NOT get the hang of Judy’s toe up cast on. Too fiddly. So off to YouTube land and found an easier cast on! Please give toe up socks a try! You can divide your sock ball in two balls (this requires a scale, and keep knitting till the yarn is gone. No more odd balls of sock yarn! Although I seem to use my odd remnants of yarn as an accent in gift wrapping , tying up plants, and other crafty adventures.

    • Hi! I highly suggest you begin your toe-up socks using Judy’s Magic Cast-On which is indeed magical and very, very simple. Toe-ups are a satisfying knit and you’ll always know how much yarn you have left for the foot and leg. Eventually you’ll want to try knitting two-at-a-time toe-up style.

  • I predict you will soon have a veritable plethora of socks from which to choose in your wardrobe! I love the slip stitch pattern, not only does it break up any possible pooling of variegated yarns, but since you are slipping stitches instead of knitting the stitch it gives the illusion of knitting faster!

  • I agree – I don’t like the centering part. I admit when I was new to socks I knit some that were off center and no one ever noticed! Now it’s not so bad, but it’s still fiddly.

    • It’s not like feet are symmetrical anyway – well, with each other but not separately.

  • You GO, GIRL!

  • ILOVE knitting and wearing these socks! There is so much great sock yarn out there! Besides having accumulated a pretty good representation of sock yarns (referred to as the stash), I have something like 54 pairs in my sock drawers. I am thinking of devoting a third drawer to these wonderful garments.

  • YAY!!! There’s no stopping you now!

  • Oh, my, Kay! You’re doing just great and that centering thing is NBD (no big deal)! Neither is the panel pattern because you just start with the centered instep and keep knitting.
    BTW, I’m doing the alternating stitch pattern on my first pair from Wanderlust. I don’t know how many pairs I’ve done previously, probably 8?!?

    • THIS. Centering a panel is even easier than an all over stitch pattern, particularly on Magic Loop: Knit cuff. Center panel on Needle 1. Knit leg. Knit heel on Needle 2. Continue sock.

  • Kay, I feel your pain. In my toe-up “Clover” socks I’m using the “Double Eyelet Rib” centered panel. But how to center a 23-stitch repeat in the middle of 32 stitches? Will it matter which side has the extra knit stitch? Will I remember? Easier to just skip one last increase and center the 23 stitches in the middle of 31 stitches. The 4 stockinette stitches on each side of the panel bring balance and harmony to my tiny knitting universe.

  • I have knit many, many pairs of socks over the years, and the experience of sock knitting has taught me that I Am The Boss Of My Knitting. Okay, so fudge a little. They’re socks! They’re way down there where no one can see that you might have decreased a few extra gusset stitches on one side because you picked up too many. Or you might have decreased a stitch or two in order to center the panel. Who cares? Just be sure that the toe is opposite the heel, and you’re good to go.

    • I’m with you, Judy. Even wearing the sock around the house with no shoes no one will notice if the panel is not centered by a stitch. Having knit socks like that, I can say that not even the person who KNIT the thing can notice 30 seconds after the sock falls off the needles….

    • Good advice! You made me chuckle ( which I needed today.)
      Thanks for commenting.

  • Congratulations to our fearless leader! The 2-circ needle method makes it pretty easy to keep the knitting fluid with patterned socks. I also believe in fudging. For my favorite pattern, 3/1 ribbing, I pick up an extra stitch at the beginning of the instep so that I have a purl stitch at both ends. I just need to sneak in one extra toe decrease later, easy peasy.

  • I’m working on a new and scary sock pattern also. It’s cables! This is my first time doing cables. I’m using the Easy Cable Sock from WinwickMum, and so far, it’s going great! Turns out cables aren’t so scary after all.

  • Look at that fabulous growing collection of sock leftovers! Soon you’ll have enough for leftovers socks. All the fun!

  • Just sayin… i hope there are some matching socks happening somewhere!

  • Hi I’m new here! Is there a pattern for this sock?

    • Welcome Lucy! If you take a look in the shop, you will see there are clever little books of knitting patterns called Field Guides. Volume 11 is all about socks and sock knitting and the pattern is in there. You can also sign up for an online forum here in “The Lounge” where you can share your knitting stories, or ask questions, or answer questions!

  • See, Kay? There are no scary sock patterns — and the only scary socks are the ones kids leave in their gym lockers!

  • I love the color of your new sock, and the stitch pattern is really pretty. Symmetry rules!

    You think that following the stitch pattern will give you same size socks, but I have been known to get super relaxed on the second sock. Bwahahaha!

  • I am an avid toe-up two-at-a-time sock knitter and bought Wanderlust. It has some great sock all over and panel patterns. I am puzzled by the provisional cast on – why would anyone use this fiddly method when you can use Judy’s magic cast on(http://knitty.com/ISSUEspring06/FEATmagiccaston.html)? Also, eliminate all guess work, heel flaps and gussets and always have perfectly fitting socks, whether toe up or top down by doing the fish lips kiss heel(https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/fish-lips-kiss-heel).

  • I am on my third pair of socks too. I made the first with the wavy rib pattern but the last two with plain stockingknit. The yarn is so lovely, Neighnorhood Fiber Co. That it’s nice to just let the color shine.