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Archive for December 25th, 2008

A Toe-Up Socknitting Photo for Diane

Thursday, December 25th, 2008

I am a member of an email-based group called Socknitters, which you can join at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Socknitters

They have an affilitated website called http://Socknitters.com This is where I found myself, out of the blue back in late winter of 2001, when I realized I could knit my own socks. (I knew my life would change, right then and there, but I could not have imagined how much!)

We discuss all things sock-related on the Socknitters email list. Subjects range from how to knit socks in any of a zillion ways, which needles/tools people like, what yarns are good for what, patterns, techniques and more. Today Diane asked for clarification on where to start knitting the heel if one is knitting socks toe up.

I have a pattern I wrote for teaching Toe-Up socks (it’s called First-Time Toe-Up Socks, which covers the toe, foot and heel, and allows you to make pretty much any leg you desire). This pattern uses a square of flat knitting to start the toe, which is different than a lot of other toe-up socks.

It also uses a typical top-down heel structure, called a heel-flap/turned heel. The difference is that the heel flap sits underneath the heel in my sock, and in a standard top-down Western-style sock the heel flap is on the back of the heel. From a knitter’s perspective, they are knit the same way.

You can really see it on this pair of striped socks I finished knitting in October. I knit the pair with one skein of Noro Kureyon Sockyarn and one skein of solid standard sockyarn, I think it was Blauband.

Diane is making a different sort of toe-up sock, using a different sort of needle setup than my pattern and I am guessing a different heel. However, the placement of where one might start the heel would be the same. I make toe-up socks with afterthought heels quite often, and I start the heel right here, as well:toeupturquoisebeforeheelflap300pixels.jpg

Notice at left that you could not knit further without wrinkles in the foot, there is no way to pull them up any more. The sock ends under the heel just about directly beneath the ankle bone (picture the person standing up rather than foot out). This sock is ready to start any standard heel type (flap, short-row or afterthought).

You can see if you look at the first photo, that I started the striped heel at this location. Knitting is so forgiving that I do it this way every time for me *and* Brian no matter what heel I make. No matter what gauge, our socks fit just great.

For the record, the 2nd photo is Lamb’s Pride Worsted (aran/heavy worsted weight wool/mohair) in color Aztec Turquoise. Socks can be knit in any gauge yarn, and these I wore for several winters whenever my feet were especially chilly.

The photo was taken in 2005. The socks now have a few patches where I have darned them after heavy use, but they are still warm and cozy.

I figured that if Diane had this question, perhaps some of my other readers would be interested. Happy socknitting!

If you want to see a variety of socks knit using my toe up structure, you can visit my LynnH SockTour 2006. It’s a slideshow of sorts, showing photos of all the socks I knit in 2006. Many (not all) of them are knit in this way.

The 2006 SockTour shows the 124th to 144th pairs I ever knit. I’m up to 164; I guess I’ve slowed down a bit recently!