Lion Brand Notebook

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Sockerific: Sock Knitting Tips from a New Sock Knitter

April 7th, 2009

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Although I have been knitting for years, I was always scared of making socks. Closing the toe, turning the heel — these ideas were foreign to me. Then there are all of the decisions involved: double pointed needles or circulars, toe up or top down, two at a time or one, etc. But for my new year’s resolution, I decided that I would tackle socks. To my surprise, they weren’t difficult and only took a week to make! Here are a few quick tips I’ve learned from my first pair of socks.

  1. Do whatever the pattern says to do. The directions might sound strange, but give it a try. After you’ve followed your first pattern, you can decide on your variations. It’s always better to understand the basics before trying something more difficult.
  2. Use self-striping yarn. Many sock patterns include several inches of straight stockinette stitch, so the color changes in yarn helps you keep track of your stitches and keeps knitting fun.
  3. Try on your socks as you’re knitting! Stop at the end of a round and carefully slide your foot into the sock, making sure not to knock any stitches off your needles. This will help you make the sock the perfect length.
  4. Have confidence. Half the battle with socks is your own perspective.

These are my first pair of socks. I used the Basic Socks pattern with Sock-Ease in Rock Candy. These socks have just the right amount of stretch to them, and they’re very comfortable. I’m already making my second pair.

  • http://www.sexandtheknitty.blogspot.com SallyHP

    I LOVE making socks! The Lion Basic Sock pattern was my first as well, and I think the best advice you just gave is to follow everything it says…in turning the heel the directions sound so weird, but when you just do it, voila! You’re done!

  • C L Keefe

    I was always intimidated by socks too! The small needles, heels, getting the right length – just wanting them to be perfect! I made my first pair a couple of years ago now and was HOOKED – I used self-striping yarn and fell in LOVE!!! Since, I’ve made about a dozen pair and I’m still not bored with the project. Every time, I try a different self-striping yarn and it’s like a whole different project. I can’t wait to see how they’re going to come out!!!
    Relax knitting!
    C

  • Janey Nichols

    The desire to learn to knit socks is what got me back into knitting after years of not doing so. I have had so much fun teaching myself to knit socks, that I am now on my 6th pair, but so far have yet to get each sock exactly the same size….but I wear them regardless, they are so comfortable and I love them! My last pair are almost perfect and I now can knit almost with memory! I find knitting relaxing and I recently started to try a cotton top. We’ll see how that goes, but I’m also still working on a pair of socks. I too use Sock Ease yarn! Love it!

  • Evelyn

    I am knitting my first pair of socks and so far I think it’s a lot of fun. I only wish I had more time to knit.

  • Vicky

    I will have time this weekend, so I am going to take the plunge and teach myself to knit a pair of socks. This basic pattern looks like it would be the best one for me to start on. And I have printed it out all ready. So, next, I will have to purchase some dpns and self-striping yarn. Oooh yeah! What color socks do I want? Looking at the Lionbrand Sock-Ease, I see that hot pink cotton candy is cute, bright and sweet, yet that taffy blue is charming and would be subtle enough to wear to work. Hmm? The fun begins, what will my decision be? Can’t wait to start.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_BVD7WUIUJA5PS4WVWJRJEZYJWM Shirley P

    After many years of knitting – I FINALLY  made some socks – they are so much easier than I expected.  I am going to try a top down pattern to see how that goes.  All my friends will be getting socks for birthdays and Christmas!  Shirley

  • Joanbrawner

    Reading all your comments about sock knitting inspired me to give it a try since I was looking for something small to work on for the summer… so far I’ve made 3 pairs and am loving these and each pair has been alittle different from the different heels and toes.  One is even toe up …. thanks