We’ve been working with Debbie Bliss Rialto Luxury Sock which comes in a large, and exciting array of colors. It comes in 100g balls, and is 75% Super-wash Wool, and 25% Nylon. The yarn we’ve chosen to work with is 04 Ultra, which is a gradient of different greens, ranging from quite dark to a lovely spring, leafy green.
It was a slow start because I cast on the wrong number of stitches! I cast on stitches for knitting a thicker pair of socks, and was happily knitting along shaping the toe when I realized my mistake. So I had to rip out and start again. I like toe-up socks because it’s easy to try them on while knitting, and I can work an Afterthought Heel, of which there are many, but one of the simplest is shaped like the toe. Thus, they are a good portable project, or an easy project to work on while at knitting group, or watching television, as the heel is left until last.
I like to knit socks on two circular needles, and I am using size 2.5mm needles for these. Double-pointed needles or Magic Loop work equally as well, if you prefer either of these methods. I used Judy’s Magic Cast On, which is so quick and easy, and makes a beautiful, seamless toe. I usually knit with metal needles, but it’s often a good idea to cast on small numbers of stitches with wooden or bamboo needles, as those materials are less slippy than metal, and the stitches are more likely to stay on smaller diameter needles. I cast on with wooden needles, work the first and trickiest rounds with them, and then switch to my favourite metal needles. I’m shaping the toe with Make 1 increases, but a simple knit in the front and back of the same stitch could be used.
I have small feet, so I cast on 20 stitches, 10 on each needle. I then knit one round, and then began to shape the toe, thus:
Round 1 (Increase Round ):
First Needle: K1, M1L, knit to last st, M1R, k1
Second needle: K1, M1L, knit to last st, M1R, k1
Round 2: Knit all the stitches on both needles.
I’m going to repeat these two rounds until I have 56 or 60 sts. I will try on to see what number of stitches fits best. After that, it’s plain sailing with stocking stitch until the foot measures 2 inches (5cm ) less than the length of my foot.
Here is the toe in progress. The socks will probably be a project that I take my time over, knitting a few rounds when I want some simple knitting to do. I will post progress in future blogs. I’m hoping that I will be able to do a tutorial on Judy’s Magic Cast On in the future.
Wendy D. Johnson has written two great books on toe-up socks: Socks from the Toe Up and Toe-Up Socks for Every Body. These books look at all the techniques required for toe-up socks, and should be available in libraries, if you don’t want to buy a copy. Wendy covers different cast-ons, types of toes, heels, and stretchy cast-offs. Most good, general sock knitting books also cover Toe-Up socks.
Please contact me if you have any knitting queries, or specific questions about this post.
In the meantime, knit on!