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Soooo, should I try and knit some socks? i feel intimidated...

(122 Posts)
jobnockey Sun 18-Nov-12 22:11:01

... but i feel i should try. How hard is it? I have only just got my head around using a circular needle and have always been a bit scared of usings DPNs...

Shall i give it a go or will it drive me round the bend? (I am a novice/intermediate knitter... trying to be more adventurous than hats and jumpers...)
Tips and encouragement/discouragment welcomed!

TiredofZombies Sun 18-Nov-12 23:03:26

Do it do it do it! DPNs are easy, really you're still only knitting on two needles - the rest are just holding stitches. The first round or two are a bit fiddly because there's not much to hold on to, it sort of flops around a bit, but once you've done a couple of rounds it's much easier. There is a technique for using circular needles too, I think it's called Magic Loop, but I've never done it, I just use the dpns. Sock knitting is ace - you can get a pair out of one ball, you can finish them reasonably quickly once you've got the hang of it, and it's a nice small project to stick in your bag. Ideal bus knitting. (Just don't drop a dpn on the bus.)

droitwichmummy Sun 18-Nov-12 23:06:35

Go for it! For your first pair stick to one colour and a plain design and you will be fine. I don't knit socks often but it is strangely satisfying.

MagiMingeWassailsAgain Sun 18-Nov-12 23:10:55

Yes, do it - I knitted my first one a couple of weeks ago.

The DPNs - fiddly to start with, but you are only ever using two, just ignore the others.

I used a pattern from Ann Budd's beginners book and it worked. It was just a diddy one to practice but I'm going to try some full size ones very soon.

Melfish Sun 18-Nov-12 23:21:58

Don't be scared of the DPNs, as others have said just concentrate on the 2 you are using and it is like knitting with 2 needles. Ignore the ones you are not using at that point in the row. I found circular needles far more confusing TBH. Regia do some lovely sock wool which comes out in stripes as you knit. I have knitted several pairs and I found the free pattern that Regia distribute to be the best. I got my copies from the knitting show at Ally Pally and a couple of local wool shops. I did take out a book from the library here which has a good selection. I knitted one called stepping stones which was relatively easy.

gussiegrips Sun 18-Nov-12 23:27:05


Knitted socks are the besht.

and, they are easier than you think. Way easier.


nickelrocketgoBooooooom Sun 18-Nov-12 23:30:20

I've got a book you can have. it's called socks from the toe up. so far i have used 3 YouTube videos to decipher it and discovered i need another double ended needle with the long wire in the middle.

Wolfiefan Sun 18-Nov-12 23:32:06

Oh yes dpn easy.
Videos on YouTube help.
I like Ann Budd book but have a very basic pattern I use. I love knitted socks. Hate sewing up projects so socks are ideal.
Can we have a sock knitting corner?!
Try patterned wool like Regia etc. I use 4ply sock wool.

Wolfiefan Sun 18-Nov-12 23:35:01

Oh and Opal wool.

MagiMingeWassailsAgain Sun 18-Nov-12 23:39:55

Nickel - you just need a long circular needle. like this in 100cm/120cm length.

I would love that toe up book grin if it's the Wendy.D Johnson one

MagiMingeWassailsAgain Sun 18-Nov-12 23:41:33

I used the Ann Budd book I got from you Nickel smile how spooky. I actually had a go, it was not as hard as it looked.

TwoJackRussellsandababy Mon 19-Nov-12 06:18:21

Definitely have a go, its addictive for some reason, although second sock syndrome can be very frustrating, or that might just be me?

TiredofZombies Mon 19-Nov-12 11:12:31

Not just you, TwoJack. It's the rib that gets me. Once I've done that, it's ok, but if I don't cast it on IMMEDIATELY after finishing the first one, it might just never get done.

My best friend and I have a saying: Socks don't count. So if you have seven or eight one or two projects to finish, and really shouldn't start something new, you can cast a sock on, because they're so small, they don't really count. Also, you can get a pair out of a 100g ball, so if your stash is huge and you're trying to be restrained and not buy any more, sock yarn doesn't count. You can buy it guilt free. One ball? That's like, nothing. Try it, it's a great way to justify it!

bamboobutton Mon 19-Nov-12 11:20:07

yes yes yes!

I'd recommend toe-up, no fiddly picking up stitches when you turn the heel/gusset.

I like this one

With a figure 8 cast on youtube vid

nickelrocketgoBooooooom Mon 19-Nov-12 13:37:25

Magi - that's what i thought, but the way they describe it, you have to knit front and back of sock at the same time, so need two.
i discovered that from the youtube video as my sock didn't look like the one in the book (it was okay, but it was a needle at the top and a needle at the bottom instead of one at the back and one at the front)

i think that's where i went wrong.
i'm crap at reading patterns anyway.

nickelrocketgoBooooooom Mon 19-Nov-12 13:37:47

maybe i need to get that Ann Budd book for myself grin

MagiMingeWassailsAgain Mon 19-Nov-12 21:18:51

You can knit socks on one long circular or on two.

Either way, or with DPNs, you are knitting front and back at the same time because you are knitting a tube. It's just a tube with a bend in it really grin

Listen to me, the expert. I've only knitted one

FlamingoBingo Mon 19-Nov-12 23:24:45

I LOVE knitting socks smile. They're small, relatively quick, and they don't use much wool so you can use really nice stuff smile

Picking up the heel flap stitches is easy peasy so long as you remember to slip a stitch at the beginning of every heel flap row...or you can do short-row heels.

The best advice I can give is to not think too hard about it, and just follow the pattern to the letter, and then look at your beautifully turned heel and marvel in amazement grin

I sat knitting socks at a group thing the other day that my kids go to. I used dpns and was knitting top-down. She immediately told the other woman with me, and myself, that she decided to not start the 'easy' way and go straight on and learn the 'harder' toe-up, circular needles, magic loop way and she'd never do it any other way now (I tried not to say 'that's open minded of you' wink). Then she asked me what heel method I was using. I said 'heel flap on these particular ones' and she started to tell me how she thinks the heels she uses were much better and she'd never dream of doing heel-flap heels. By this point I was quietly getting on with my knitting and inwardly hmming and hoping she went away very soon [sigh].

Anyway, that aside - go ahead, get a simple pattern, and just do it! Once you've done one pair, and got the hang of it, you may just find yourself addicted wink

Viviennemary Mon 19-Nov-12 23:31:54

I only just mastered knitting with four needles a couple of years ago. I got an opal sock kit and followed that pattern. Also I found actually using five needles a bit easier than four.

When you cast on cast all the stitches onto an ordinary needle and then divide them up. Much easier than trying to cast them onto four different needles. You can even knit the first two or three rows on ordinary needles before dividing up the stitches. Hope that makes sense!

MagiMingeWassailsAgain Mon 19-Nov-12 23:44:23

Silver's sock class - a great tutorial as widely recommended on Ravelry.

Do join Ravelry if you haven't already, it's bloody great. Like MN but with more knitting.

Viviennemary Mon 19-Nov-12 23:48:19

Phoenix Knitting Forums is also very good. Much much smaller than Ravelry. Somebody will always answer if you have a question on something.

nickelrocketgoBooooooom Tue 20-Nov-12 11:26:12

I knew i was doing it wrong when it didn't look like a tube, or even a fold.
it really did look like I was knitting top and bottom.

fossil97 Tue 20-Nov-12 17:37:58

Do it! Socks rock, you must get some good selfpatterning yarn.

DPNS - there is nothing to master really. You knit with 2 of them at a time just like with single pointed needles. I used to think you had to magically hold them all at once. I do cast on a single needle and divide the stitches into 3 or 4 after the 1st row. I have done the 2 circular needles method but I don't think there's any advantage.

Toe up is probably good but top down is maybe easier to understand for your very first pair, because you start with straight knitting, just cast on REALLY loose.

Supplies here <pusher>

I started with a Sirdar pattern that was very clearly written with UK terminology, that might help? The current one appears to be 8489 assuming that is knitted in the round.

jobnockey Wed 21-Nov-12 20:24:32

Okay I'm convinced!!! I will probably be back with questions once I've got started!!!

<goes off to look at lovely, lovely wool>

droitwichmummy Wed 21-Nov-12 21:14:51

Hooray! Looks like a sock knitting community has taken over MN!

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