Monday, August 9, 2010

Socks, Decreases, and Twists

I've been working on a pair of top-down socks with an afterthought heel, and I found what I thought (and still think) is a pretty good way to decrease for the toe and heel. In the past, I've typically decreased two stitches on each side every other row, but doing that always results in those square lines on either side of the toe. This time, I k2tog on one row, then ssk on the next, always using the resulting deacreased stitch from the previous row as one of the two working stitches in the next row. That is, if I have, for instance, four stitches (somehow working circularly!), I would k1, k2tog, k1, then on the next row I would ssk, k1, then on the next row I would k2tog. This has the same general shaping effect as ssk followed by k2tog, followed by a non-increase row, but without the slight, pointy gap that occurs when you do that row after row and then fold the fabric at exactly that point. It looks great, but when you graft across the tip of the toe, you end up with a slight twist in the fabric, since that one important stitch that results from each decrease is kind of like the short side of a rectangle. That is, you've got the front stitches, and the back stitches, and then each decrease stitch is a short side. Then you have to make one short side part of the front of the rectangle, and the other short side part of the back of the rectangle.

This isn't making any sense, is it? I swear, it works out in the end.

I know the explanation is a bit dense. Pics will follow in the next post, when I show the finished socks.


  1. Sounds like a good idea and must try on my next pair of socks.

  2. I'd love to see a photo, I didn't quite get that :P but it does sound interesting!