- Arts and Design»
- Crafts & Handiwork
Free sock knitting patterns
Hand knitted socks are wonderful!
I never knew how it felt to wear hand knitted socks until last year when I finally got round to knitting myself a pair. I only wish I'd made the discovery years ago!
Long ago I used to knit and then I stopped and didn't pick up a pair of knitting needles for over 20 years. Then I picked up two pairs and began to learn how to knit socks. That's right, although there are other ways, four double-pointed needles is the norm for sock knitting. Sometimes you need five. Before you run away screaming, let me say... just give it a go - you might surprise yourself.
On this page I have included some great resources: Silver's Sock Tutorial, which I followed when making my very first pair, some links to free sock knitting patterns and some recommendations for needles, yarns and a really great book. You'll also find some very useful videos - when you just need to SEE how it's done.
© This page was created by TheRaggedEdge. All rights reserved.
The hardest part of knitting socks is the beginning
The rest is a piece of cake...
I always have trouble with the first row or two of knitting socks. There simply aren't enough hands available! Generally a pattern will start with some rib rows, either single K1 P1 or double K2 P2. Then someone gave me a tip. Always start with two rows of knit stitch. It's a lot easier while you wrestle with joining stitches between your third and first needle.
Tip: always cast on with a larger size needle than the pattern calls for, then change to the normal size for the first knit row.
Watch the video to see how it's done.
Socks - casting on & cuff
DPNs - Double Pointed Needles
There are other types of needles used for sock knitting but I prefer the traditional way of knitting in the round. Bamboo needles are great for beginners, especially as they come in large multiple sets, which makes it less expensive than buying individual sets.
Silver's sock tutorial with free pattern
If you've never knitted socks before - start here!
Silver's Sock Class is the best place to begin. With step-by-step pictures, she shows you how to make a gorgeous pair of hand knitted socks.
She has color-coded the pattern so you don't get muddled. She explains everything so that you know why you are doing in the way that she tells you.
After you've done the first pair, you can print out the instructions without the photos for future reference.
The socks in the photo were knitted for my step-daughter in gorgeous Mirasol Hacho 100% hand dyed Merino Wool.
- Free Sock Knitting Patterns
Plenty of patterns from the Daily Knitter
- Knitted Sock Patterns
Vintage patterns that never grow old.
- Knitting Pattern Central - Free Socks Knitting Pattern Link Directory
Free Socks Knitting Pattern Link Directory
- Free Knitting Pattern For Ribbed Waffle Pattern Stitch Socks
Free knitting pattern for socks with a ribbed waffle pattern.
- Free Knitting Pattern For Easy Beginner Socks
Free knitting pattern for easy beginner socks for women. A heavier pattern, they are good for wearing with boots.
- Basic Socks
Knit a pair of basic socks
Turning a Heel
I remember my grandmother and aunt talking about 'turning a heel'. Later my auntie told me that it was the 'worst part' of sock knitting. Well... it's my favourite bit. I love the process of crafting the heel. There is something almost magical about the way it forms in your hands. Once you've done it once or twice, it's easy.
That's the great thing about knitting socks - you never get bored because you aren't knitting acres of backs or sides. There's always something happening with socks
These socks were knitted in Regia yarn by Kaffe Fassett.
Photo: Hand knitted by TheRaggedEdge
More free sock patterns
Socks by theraggededge
For the socks in the photo above, I used the famous Noro Kureyon yarn in shade S102. I love the varying texture and shades of Noro, it is fascinating watching the yarn slip through your fingers and seeing how it knits up.
They have lasted me a year now and I wear them to bed and with my walking boots... not at the same time!
Gorgeous sock yarn
"Not all socks are created equal"
Sarah Ban Breachnach, Romancing the Ordinary
"But it helps if they are both the same size"
Bon Bon Socklettes
Free sock pattern
Hannah of Knit*Six has very kindly allowed me to reproduce one of her lovely patterns here. These cute little 'socklettes' are knitted on a circular needle but the pattern can be adapted to DPNS.
Yarn: 2 skeins Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran in color 300602
Needles: US #4 (I used a 32" circular needle for magic loop, but you can easily substitute your needles of choice)
Notions: Stitch marker (optional), yarn needle
Gauge: 20 sts x 28 rows = 4 inches
Petite Mock Cable Pattern
Row 1: *K2tog and then work first stitch again before removing stitches from left needle, P2; repeat from * to end.
Rows 2, 3, and 4: [correction] Work in K2 P2 rib
Repeat these four rows for pattern.
Cast on 48 stitches.
Work 10 rows K2,P2 rib.
Work petite mock cable pattern three times, ending with Row 1.
Heel flap: Knit 12 stitches, turn and purl 24 stitches. These stitches will form the heel flap.
Row 1: Slip 1 as if to purl, K to end.
Row 2: Slip 1 as if to purl, P to end.
Work these 2 rows 12 times, then work Row 1 once more.
Slip 1 as if to purl, P14, P2tog, P1, turn.
Slip 1 as if to purl, K7, K2tog TBL (through the back loop), K1, turn.
Row 1: Slip 1 as if to purl, P to one stitch before gap, P2tog, P1, turn.
Row 2: Slip 1 as if to purl, K to one stitch before gap, K2tog TBL, turn
Continue working these two rows until all stitches have been worked.
Pick up gusset stitches
Using needle holding heel flap stitches, pick up and knit each slipped stitch along edge of heel flap (a total of 12 - 13 gusset stitches); place marker if desired; pick up and PURL the stitch below the first instep stitch; transfer this stitch to the instep-stitch needle.
Using needle holding instep stitches, work across instep stitches (you should be on Row 2 of Petite mock cable pattern); pick up and PURL the stitch below the first stitch on the other side of the gusset gap; place marker if desired; pick up and knit each slipped stitch along edge of heel flap (a total of 12 - 13 gusset stitches)
You should now have 26 instep stitches; from here on, always purl the first and last stitch on the instep-stitch needle, forming a column of purl stitches to set off the edge of the instep pattern.
Heel-stitch needle: Knit across half of heel stitches, place marker to mark beginning of rounds from here on, then knit the other half of heel stitches; next, knit each gusset stitch you picked up through the back loop.
Instep-stitch needle: Purl 1; work instep stitches in pattern; Purl 1; next, knit each gusset stitch you picked up through the back loop.
Decrease gusset stitches
Round 1: Heel-stitch needle-Knit to 3 stitches before instep; K2tog, K1; Instep-stitch needle-P1, work instep stitches in pattern, P1; K1, K2Tog TBL; knit to end.
Round 2: Knit to instep stitches; work instep stitches in pattern (including the P1 you've established at either side); knit to end.
Repeat these two rounds until 50 stitches remain (24 on the sole, 26 on the instep). Arrange so instep stitches and sole stitches are on separate needles.
Instep: Purl 1, Work mock cable pattern, Purl 1; knit across sole stitches.
Continue working mock cable pattern on instep 12 times, or to desired length, ending with row 3. Sole will continue to be worked in stockinette stitch.
Next round: Knit sole stitches and on insetp, P2tog, P across to last two stitches, P2tog, to create a purl ridge before beginning toe decreases.
Round 1: Work to 3 stitches before end of needle, K2tog, K1; K1, K2tog TBL, knit across to last three stitches on needle, K2tog, K1; K1, K2tog TBL, knit to end of round.
Round 2: K to end
Work rows 1 and 2 until there are 12 stitches on each needle, then work decrease row only, until 6 stitches remain on each needle. Arrange stitches and graft together. If you prefer, you may also thread yarn through remaining stitches and draw tight to close.
Weave in ends and block as desired.
(c) 2007, Hannah Six.
Hannah can also be found on Ravelry
You don't need this best selling sock knitting book - Get Started Knitting Socks
But it will help a lot. It is one of the best laid out knitting instruction books you will find. The photos are superb and the patterns are easy to understand.
Publisher's Description: "From cast-on stitches to binding off, this handbook details the simple steps needed to turn seemingly complicated sock knitting projects into easy and enjoyable activities. Helpful photographs and instructional drawings ensure that even inexperienced knitters will be able to produce high-quality socks and handle more complicated techniques, such as the Kitchener stitch at the toe. Using instructions for five different sizes-from child through adult large-at five different gauges, knitters can produce styles ranging from delicate dress socks to thick and furry slipper socks. More adventurous knitters can add variety and flair by following one of 16 unique designs or trying one of the dozens of rib, cable, and lace patterns provided. With plenty of tips and a handy stitch dictionary, this guide unleashes the creativity and fun of sock knitting."
S. Schraeder says, "I never thought that I would be able to knit socks. Patterns just seemed too complicated. I was thrilled to find this book and it started me on an obsession with sock knitting. This is wonderful for beginners and I think that I will be using this as reference for a long time to come. The explanation and illustration of the kitchener graft was especially helpful.
Knitted socks? Want to try?
I hope you've been inspired to try knitting a pair of socks. Be very careful.... sock knitting is wickedly addictive!
Share your sockies in the comments below.