Monday, March 23, 2015

Suffering Sock Shock!

by Kath Rutledge from the Haunted Yarn Shop Mysteries

Okay, I’ll admit it – for someone who owns and runs a yarn shop, I’m not the most courageous of knitters. I’m not hopeless – I mean, I do knit my share of baby hats for the TGIF (Thank Goodness It’s Fiber) donation challenge, and I’ve knit ruffled scarves. But would you like to know what I’ve never tried? Socks. Socks! I think I suffer from sock shock. But I’m about to change that. Ernestine O’Dell shared this pattern with me, patted my shoulder, and told me to go ahead and jump right in. I might as well! Here’s the pattern, in case you want to join me. 

Ernestine says spring is the perfect time to try something new and to chip away at old fears. Is there a pattern or a project that you’d like to conquer, now that spring is finally in the air?

*  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  
Ernestine’s Easy Spiral Newborn Baby Socks (tube socks – no heels!)

Self-striping fingering weight yarn (something soft and washable)
Four double-pointed # 2 needles
Tapestry needle

Loosely cast 30 stitches onto one of your needles. Divide the stitches between three needles. Being careful not to twist your stitches, join the ends, and begin to knit around for the cuff.

Cuff pattern: knit 1, purl 1 (k1, p1)
Continue for 2 inches

Spiral pattern:
Rows 1, 2, 3: k3, p3
Rows 4, 5, 6: k2, p3, k3
Rows 7, 8, 9: k1, p3, k3
Rows 10, 11, 12: p3, k3, p3
Rows 13, 14, 15: p2, k3, p3
Rows 16, 17, 18: p1, k3, p3
Continue the spiral pattern until your sock measures ½ inch less than the length you’d like your socks to be. The socks pictured are just about 5 inches long.

Shaping for toe:
Row 1: k4, k2 together
Row 2: k
Row 3: k3, k2 together
Row 4: k
Row 5: k2, k2 together
Row 6: k
Row 7: k1, k2 together

You should have 10 stitches left, and you’re ready to close the toe. Cut the yarn, leaving a 1 foot tail. Thread the tail onto your tapestry needle. Pull the needle and tail through each of your ten remaining stitches, removing the stitches from the knitting needles and gathering the toe of the sock.

Push the tapestry needle through the tip of the toe to the inside of the sock. Now turn the sock inside out, and use the tapestry needle to anchor the stitches firmly. Knot and snip the tail. Turn the sock right side out.

Now make the second sock. Or lots of them! For larger size socks, cast on more stitches in multiples of 6 (i.e. 36, 42, 48, etc.)

 *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  
Visit Molly MacRae on Facebook and Pinterest, or find her the first Monday of each month at Vintage Cookbooks and Crafts


  1. Thanks, Kath! I might be able to manage those.

  2. I'll encourage you, Willow, and you encourage me, and then maybe we'll end up with two pairs!

  3. It's not so much that the socks scare me, it's the 4 needles! I get so worked up about using 4 needles, the room starts spinning and I hyperventilate!

  4. I know exactly what you mean, Deb! Maybe we need to start a 4 needle support group. :)

  5. No knitting for me, especially with four needles! I crochet, maybe a pattern similar but for crochet? The book was very good!

  6. I bet there's something similar for crochet, Elaine. I'll see what I can find and report back. Glad you liked the book! The next one, Knot the Usual Suspects, will be out September 1st. Exciting!

  7. Using five needles is easier than using four. When you use four needles, it means the sock looks like a triangle, when it is actually round. Five needles, and almost all double pointed needles come in packages of five, You do form a square opening, but it looks more like the finished sock. Using double pointed needles is not as hard as it looks. I knit everything on either circular or double pointed needles. I find them easier to handle, even when knitting a straight piece and not knitting in the round.

  8. These socks look wonderful and if life will quit throwing things at me I'll be able to settle in and finish up Quilt. I'm dying to find out what's going on!!!

  9. I want to try it too but also scared of 4 needles!!!