Knit Along Recap
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- We are now done working flat, in rows. The next few steps we work will position us for knitting in the round again.
- The last row of your heel turn, and the waiting stitches on Needles 3 & 4, are good places to put in lifelines. That way, if you don’t like your gusset pick-up for some reason it will be easier to try again.
- You can now mentally divide the sock into the Instep (the top of the sock) and the Sole (the bottom of the sock). This division won’t matter for this pattern, but it could come into play for future sock patterns you knit.
- The last heel-turn row you worked should have been a wrong side (purl) row. You should be ready to work a knit row, as in my picture below.
We’re going to be working clockwise around the sock from the 4 o’clock position. We’ll knit the heel turn sts at 6 o’clock, up the side of the heel flap at 9 0′clock, across the instep at noon, and down the heel flap at 3 o’clock.
Gusset Set Up (I’ll be referring to double pointed needles here. If you’re using a different method just ignore the needle notations.)(See The Discussion for dealing with a potential gap at the top of your picked-up stitches.)
New Needle: Knit across stitches remaining from heel turn
Same Needle: Pick up and Knit 15 (17) sts along first edge of heel flap
New Needles: Knit across 28 (30) sts on instep
New Needle: Pick up and knit 15 (17) sts along second side of heel flap
Same Needle: Knit 9 sts (half the stitches left over from the heel turn). Place marker for beginning of round.
NOTE: The beginning of round is now in the center of the sole. Mentally renumber your DPNs accordingly. The instep sts are now on Needles 2 & 3. If you’re using two circs or magic loop you’ll want to shift your stitch markers around to match.
Smaller size: 76 sts total: 24 sts N1, 14 sts each N 2 & 3, 24 sts N4. Larger size: 82 sts total: 26 sts N1, 15 sts each N 2 & 3, 26 sts, N4
(If you made your heel flap longer or shorter than mine, adjust your numbers accordingly. You’ll pick up one stitch in each ridge.)
Also, don’t sweat it if you end up picking up 16 sts on one side and 15 sts on the other! People won’t be looking that closely at your sock and one stitch won’t change the fit much. Just remember to decrease the extra stitch away at some point to keep things even.
Knit one round even
N1: Knit to last 3 sts, K2tog, K1
N2 & 3: Knit even
N4: K1, SSK, K to end
Alternate working a knit even round and a decrease round until there are 56 (60) sts remaining.
Note: The gusset decreases are another place you can customize the sock. For instance, work more even rows between decreases to change the taper. Cat Bordhi has an entire book devoted to working the gusset in different places.
Knit even for 62 rows from picked up gusset sts, about 6″. Or about 2″ less than desired length.
Such a small part of the sock, but so much to tell you! I’m about to flood you with pictures to help you see what is going on.
Many sock patterns have you work the heel flap by slipping the first stitch of each row. That creates a column of bigger stitches along the edge, which is where you pick up for the gusset. I worked my socks that way for many years. It can be tricky to see where to pick up, and you can end up with little gaps along the edge of your heel flap.
I think the garter stitch edge makes things much easier.
Since it can be hard to see what is happening at the fine gauge of my Indulgence 6-Ply with Silk yarn, I knit a big sample using Viking of Norway Balder yarn.
In the picture below, I stuck the needle in through the back of the stitch to give you a better view.
Here is how the picked up stitches look on my regular sock.
Now, once you’ve picked up all the stitches along the first edge of the heel flap, you’ll automatically want to start knitting the instep stitches. Stop! If you do that you might end up with a little gap where your gusset and instep meet.
I like the dodge the gap by picking up an extra stitch at the top of the gusset in the same way you work a Make 1 increase.
This picked-up, close the gap, stitch is included in the 15 (17) stitches mentioned in the pattern.
It will look a little different when you’re coming down the second side of the sock.
Resources for dealing with the gusset gap
The Knitting Squirrel uses a garter stitch edge, too.
Wise Hilda uses a slip stitch edge and picks up a different strand.
By the way, I’m using Knitting Fever brand “Indulgence 6ply with Silk” yarn in color 7 for my socks.
Caution! I’m at the New York Sheep and Wool Festival in Rhinebeck, NY this weekend. I might not get to check for questions until Sunday night or Monday morning! If you get stuck, hang tight and work on another project until I get back. Thanks!