Sockfest Finale!!!!!


Welcome to the last sockfest post!  I must say, I’m quite excited to reveal my first ever pair of socks to the world!  It has been an awesome experience, I spent most of it marvelling at the amazing design of the sock, the precision, the engineering, to turn a piece of knitting to fit a right-angled bit of body.

I’ve loved reading your feedback as well, it has been fabulously positive, and I’m amazed at the sock knitters that have appeared out of the woodwork, there are so many!  But I suppose that is not surprising, as sock yarn is so popular, there must be an enormous population to support it!  One comment I received was loved not only by me, but by many other people who left comments afterwards.  After complaining that my socks were too big, the lovely Lauri left me instructions on how to work out how to create a pattern by measuring my leg and working out the math.  I e-mailed Lauri, because people were so appreciative of her instructions and asked her if she would mind me cutting and pasting her comment in my next post so that even more people might benefit from it!  Being the lovely, sharing soul that she is, she did not mind, so here it is, in blue, I hope that you enjoy!

The socks are lovely. I’m sorry about the size problem! Do you know the gauge tricks with socks? It takes a few measurements, but ensures that your socks will fit: any needle, any yarn, any feet. Not magic – just mathematics.

First, I measure the ankle in question. I like to measure just above the ankle bone at the narrowest part of the ankle. I measure in inches. I call this measurement A. Let’s say our imaginary person has a slender 8″ ankle. A = 8

Next, I do a gauge or tension swatch, knitting a little tube in the round. I will use the needle that makes sense to use with the wool, but if the fabric is coming out too loose or too tight (like cardboard) I will change needles until I get a knitted fabric I’m happy with. Now I lay the swatch down and measure the stitches per inch. I call this measurement G for gauge. I try to get 8 or 9 stitches per inch with sock yarn, so let’s say our G = 9 stitches per inch.

Now for the math. A x G = CO
Ankle x Gauge = Cast On (initial number)
In this case, 8″ ankle x 9 spi = 72

Now comes the interesting part. Most knitting has significant stretch, so to compensate for this I subtract 10% for snugness:
A x G = CO – 10%

In this case, 10% of 72 is 7.2 (rounded to 7), and 72-7= 65. Most of the time I do a k2, p2 ribbing, so I like a nice even number cast on which is divisible by 4. In this case, I’d round down to 64 stitches and this is how many I would cast on.

This is adaptable for any kind of yarn and any kind of ankle. For example:
10″ ankle x 7 spi = 70 – 7 = 63 (or round to 64 cast on)
10″ ankle x 8 spi = 80 – 8 = 72 stitch cast on
7″ ankle x 7 spi = 49 – 5 (4.9 rounded up) = 44 stitches to cast on

I’m not sure what your gauge is, but if it’s 7.5 stitches per inch and you cast on 72, that’s a pretty big sock. (72 divided by 7.5 = 9.6″) If you consider the 10% snugness rule, it would fit more like a 10 1/2 – 11″ ankle. Quite a large one.

I hope this explanation makes sense – if I missed something, feel free to email me! I knit a lot of socks for all kinds of different feet and I rarely use patterns, because the math is actually pretty easy once you know the tricks. There are also easy math tricks for heels – which I would be happy to share but this has gotten long enough already. Hope I’ve helped.

Lovely Lauri, you definitely helped!  Not just me, but lots of others too!  I wonder if it might be a hassle for you to tell me at what point I begin to decrease at the toes!  (eeeee!!!  Cheeky!!!)  So thank you, you are a true sock ninja.

OK.  Are you ready?

Introducing….. the Rainbow Socks.

Joy of joys, there are rainbows on my feet and I knitted them!  The excitement was massive, the moment I finished them I put them straight on instead of washing and spinning them! 

The most important thing I learned from my first pair is that “grafting” is not another word for “three-needle bind off” and that when you do a three-needle bind off with the last 30 stitches you get an annoying ridge that rubs on your toes and your feet look a bit like the feet of a Dr Seuss character.  Never mind though!  I’m using the rubbing as a reminder that I have a lot to learn!  (i.e. Kitchener stitch!)  And it does not minimise the enjoyment in the slightest!

I love my socks, I love that I got confused at some point in the decreasing, and in the centre of one of the toes there are a couple of k2togs…

I love them so much I cast on another pair immediately!   I’ve named this pair “the Mad Hatter socks” and you will understand why when you see them!  They are FABulous!  And I’m following the Yarn Harlot’s pattern from her book “Knitting Rules” which says cast on 64 stitches, which is what Lauri suggests too, so I’m feeling confident that these will not be slouchy!

So there we have it!  An adventure in knitting, an adventure that was obviously so much fun that I am compelled to start it all over again and that is so wonderful that I can’t put it down and finish the final 10% of my second chef hat in possum merino!

A possum merino hat is just what I need right now, autumn has arrived and the heater came out of hibernation this evening!  More excuses to knit more lovely things really, like I needed one!

OK then, the Mad Hatter socks are not going to knit themselves,

wishing you lots and lots of love and blessings, from Alice and Raymond XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

About Crochet with Raymond

I'm a crochet obsessed, reiki master, crystal healing, yoga junkie, counselling student, in a happy long term relationship... and Raymond's mum!
This entry was posted in DPNs!, Knitting!, SOCKS!!!. Bookmark the permalink.

75 Responses to Sockfest Finale!!!!!

  1. Lorena says:

    Well done! They do look amazing!

  2. Terrie says:

    Oh they are soooooooo amazing! I am in awe! Well done! x

  3. Great socks, I just love the yarn as well! (watch out : knitting socks = another addiction!!!)

  4. MeredithJean says:

    You have such stamina, do you ever sleep? The socks are brilliant xxx and beautiful.

  5. Bimbi says:

    Great socks, they’ll make you forget all about winter!

    Thanks also for Lauri’s information. I had already made a note of it! I’d love to also hear the trick for her heel.
    Greeetings fomr rainy England

  6. frou-frou says:

    Lovely socks and even lovelier yarn :o)

  7. Linda says:

    They look awesome! Nice job!🙂

  8. Joyce says:

    Hullo Alice, oh wow, your socks are beautiful. I am totally in awe of you and them. Gosh, I am still *gulping* at my beanie that I started about this time last year and is still *ahem* on the set of 4 needles between the pages of the pattern book, unfinished. Its scares me and I don’t have the heart to undo it, because it took me so long to get it where it’s at, however, I cannot bring myself to finish it just yet either.

  9. Monica says:

    Well done, they look lovely! Love the colors! I cannot knit, and I think a really cannot make socks!

  10. Monica says:

    Haha, I saw my comment and had to smile because of the little ‘avatar’ next to my name!

  11. Esther says:

    Wow, go you!! I am never, ever going to start crocheting/knitting socks. My bf would have me stay at home all the time and make him socks😉
    Your socks are very pretty!!

  12. Janine says:

    Well done Alice, knitting those socks looked like quite a task, you are amazing.

  13. Kirstin says:

    Dear Alice,

    I am now an expert sock knitter and can assure you: your socks are just perfect! The beautiful rainbow colors are heavenly and fit properly to your mind – at least as far as I can say that. I read your blog for quite some time now (even if my English is very, very bad, how can you be so sure ellen even) and I love it! Your crochet work is adorable and in love with Raymond, I am anyway;)

    Greetings from Germany sends you

  14. Jude says:

    Well done you..they are wonderful!!!
    Tell me, did you knit them at the same time, on seperate balls of yarn? and does that mean each ball’s rainbow will come out the same, as yours seems have done..(do you understand what I men?)
    Take care

  15. Jane says:

    Oh wow Alice, they are gorgeous! I’d love to make socks, but I only crochet, and I don’t think it would make such good socks… also my house is not yet full of crochet!🙂

  16. Karen says:

    Do you know what struck me most is the piccie of Alice, she just looks soooooo serene and happy happy happy as she gazes at her feet!!! I think that picture clearly sums up this lovely little adventure we’ve all felt part of!!! Maybe going back to names the next sub-heading/name could be ‘Sock it to Raymond’ LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m trying to knit with one hand with left needle stuck between crossed legs (try it!!!) done 6″ so far just a flat tube sock, I didn’t want to get left out of sock mania!! Like this for eight weeks after op on wrist! Glorious socks Alice and I can’t imagine what the Mad Hatter will sock us!!! love to you all, be happy everyone xxxxxxxx

  17. Monica says:


    Be ware… socks are highly addictive things to knit…

  18. Ashley says:

    I love them! So lovely and bright and colourful! x

  19. poppy says:


    They’re gorgeous! I love the yarn and I particularly love the way you’ve managed to make the colours line up – I’m far too lazy to bother with that.

    Watch out though – sock knitting is like some kind of addiction. I even got to take mine on the plane when we went on holiday last year – little wooden DPNs are fortunately not considered a threat in the way that larger knitting sticks might be!

    Love your blog, stay happy!

  20. I love them! Rainbow socks are the best in the world.

    And the little one I have sitting on my lap says ‘wow, socks!’ and now he is complaining as he wants me to scroll back up to see Raymond!

  21. Lauri says:

    Beautiful socks! I’m so glad the math was helpful. I didn’t invent it, so I don’t really want to take credit for it – I’m sure someone shared it with me along the way!🙂

    To answer your question about toes, I start decreasing for the toe when the sockfoot reaches to half-way up the little toe. I slip the sock onto spare wool and try it on – that’s how I know. This is because I don’t like pointy toed socks. I will then decrease as normal, but only down to 28-32 stitches total. (14 front/back or 16 front/back) This makes a much wider toe seam to kitchener or 3 needle bind off. I find people like this more than the pointy toes many patterns suggest. It means starting the decreases later and doing fewer – hope that makes sense?

    OK – the heel trick for “any size/any number” socks. Work the heel flap on half the total number of stitches for the cuff. For example, on a 64 st cuff, I work the heel on 32 stitches. For a 42 stitch sock, I work the heel on 21 stitches. It works with any number. I work back-and-forth for the heel flap until I have as many rows as stitches. For ex. 32 stitch heel worked for 32 rows. For some reason books call this “square” but it isn’t square. Now, for people with high insteps (this is measured from the mid-ankle-bone to the floor), then I will knit longer heel flaps. The important thing is making one long enough, IMHO. Most people like the heel flap to feel like it starts about mid-ankle bone and extends all the way to the bottom of the heel – LOL – naturally!🙂 *grins* To turn the heel once it is long enough, I like the French heel. Knit across to the “center” of the heel. On a 32 st heel flap, the “center” would be the space between the 16th & 17th stitches. On an odd heel it would be an actual stitch, which you would knit. So:
    – knit to center (if it’s a stitch, knit it)
    – knit 2 stitches past the center point
    – k2tog OR SSK
    – k 1
    – turn
    – slip the first stitch as if to purl
    -Purl back to the center point ( if it’s a stitch, you must knit it.)
    – Purl 2 past the center
    – p2tog
    -p 1
    – turn
    (I will slip the first st after this as well.)
    OK – now the “heel turn” is set up, and this works for any number of stitches. Now, you continue to knit to the “gap” close the gap by k2tog or SSK, k1, turn. Purl to the “gap”, close the gap by p2tog, p1, turn, etc. Just as with a regular heel turn, but you don’t have to worry about numbers. I hope this makes sense? Feel free to email me if I’ve confused you!🙂

  22. Louise says:

    Amazing work, just lovely.

  23. Carole says:

    I love them! And you did them so quickly. I’m hoping mine look just as good as yours when they are done, I’m almost to the heel on the first one🙂 Can’t wait to see the Mad Hatter socks.

  24. Meredith says:

    They are fantastic!!!!!!! Love the colors, you did a gret job.
    Have fun on pair number 2.

  25. Fantastic Alice…..should I be presumptuous to mention that I hope the love doesn’t wear off like it did with the garter stitch cardi 😉 LOL Just kidding xx

    Love the socks…I am determined to make a pair and get past that heel bit, I like knitting from the toe up so I can try them on as I go to get the right fit. Your socks don’t look big…they look comfy! But I hate tight things on my feet 🙂

    Mad Hatter Socks….can’t wait!

  26. Gorgeous socks!! Well done!

  27. Tickety-boo says:

    Wowsers Alice!!!!! They are some GORGEOUS rainbow socky-wocky-do-dahs!!!
    They are things of true beauty. Can’t wait to see the Mad Hatters I’m all excited. Sock knitting is adictive I promise you. In saying that I couldn’t master the Kitchener stitch that’s why I do toe-up now, there are no seems to get nobbly bobbly bits on.
    I have to try and track down the awesome possum yarn🙂

  28. miek says:

    wow, i realy love your socks. i`ll think if i would finish my first pair of socks i`ll leave them on forever🙂
    and thank you Lauri for your exelent explenation of how to messure the socks in the first place.
    this is realy helpfull to me, thanks again

  29. Mar says:

    The are absolutely gorgeous!!
    I see a new adiction!

  30. Carol says:

    What wonderful socks, love them and your happy face certainly shows how much you love them too.
    Great information from Laurie ……… now am I going to be tempted to make another pair 50 years after the first, not so good, experience? It might have to wait until I take my next trip to Whitby to the wonderful Bobbins wool shop to see if they have some yarn to seduce me.
    Carol xx

  31. heather says:

    oh Alice they’re fabulous! So beautiful and lovely neat stitches.
    If they’re too big, could you wear them in winter oveer another pair of socks to keep you nice and toasty?

  32. penelope dubois says:

    So bright and cheery! The possibilities are endless and affordable! Nice, nice job!
    I see that I was making mine way to big. Thanks Laurie!
    Actually my first pair was a beautiful Claudias Handpaints, and a furry little doggie, Bear,loved them and I ended up with blown out heels and toes! Not pretty!

  33. Penny says:

    Oh well done Alice, these are just amazing, you defnitely have gone up even more notches on my admiration scale, how clever are you! I love your mad hatter socks and the knitting is so so so neat!! I’m having toe envy as I type this, maybe just maybe i could progress to making myself some this coming winter…. I did ask one of the ladies in my LYS if she could hold a workshop to teach the likes of me how to knit with DPN’s and make socks. Hopefully she might gather some more peeps and then I can conquer my fear/dread of DPN’s !!
    What colour are your new socks? Cant’t wait to see. Thanks for sharing these beauties with us…. ps. Re: my lacy kids cardigan i posted about, I thought of you and know you’ll be able to whip this up no problemo! xxxxxxxx P xxxxxxxxxxxxx

  34. Claudia says:

    Your socks are just gorgeous, Alice!! Vibrant and soft!!
    (It seems SO difficult to me…)
    Very good job!

  35. Melissa says:

    Your socks turned out beautifully! You give me hope. I’m meeting with some yarney friends tonight and Mel does amazing socks. She’s going to teach me! Yea!!

  36. Lyndsey says:

    These are wonderful. I would love to try and make a pair myself some time soon. But I am a wee bit scared. Thanks for the inspiration!

  37. Hannah says:

    Your socks are a masterpiece! Go girl, go. On to the next pair. Me too!

  38. Julie says:

    Fabulous, they look amazing, the first of many pairs of snuggly socks

  39. Casey says:

    Your rainbow socks are awesome!

  40. LeeAnn says:

    Yay, Yay, Yay!!! Congrats! They look absolutely wonderful! =]

  41. Thank you for sharing your sock adventure with us! It has been a thrilling ride and I love the results. I may even be very brave and try knitting again just to have a go at a pair of socks. The last time I knitted it was for a school jumper for my little brother while he was in infant school and he is going to be a dad in a month🙂 Rachael Xx

  42. Kathy Welsh says:

    Ooo, they’re so beautiful! I can’t wait to see the next pair!🙂

  43. Eve says:

    I love them! What a feeling of accomplishment you must have! Looking forward to the Mad Hatter socks!

  44. Happybee says:

    They look wonderful!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  45. Debs says:

    These socks are FANTASTIC! Lovely rainbow of colour. Well done you! You make it sound so easy but I have no idea how to begin knitting in the round let alone socks! Can’t wait to see your next pair. Mad Hatter? Hmm?

  46. We are just so impressed! Way to go! A Peanut (or two) for you!

  47. Hesian says:

    Lovely! You have inspired me to try a pair of socks myself, although mine are crochet since as I’ve stated before I am incapable of knitting. they are turning out nicely though although my rainbow colorway isnt as pretty as yours

  48. Nicole says:

    Aweeeeeeeesome!! They aren’t as big as I imagined they’d be, I think you nearly got it! Those tips from Lauri are great though so your next pair will be perfect!

    I bought my first set of DPNs today all due to your lovely self! I haven’t decided what to do yet (tea cosie is looking pretty appealing though!) and no idea how to knit in the round yet (will be going to Youtube for that) but just wanted to let you know🙂 You’ve turned another crocheter (is that a word?) into a knitter, yay!!

    x x x

  49. LaWoodstock says:

    Very well done, your socks are great!
    I like your blog and your works, you are very talented!

    Ciao Ciao from Italy🙂

  50. moleymakes says:

    Fabby looking socks Alice, I just love those colours sooo much.

    Great tip there from Lauri. Thank you🙂

  51. Joanna says:

    WOW Those socks are amazing Alice, I love them! xx

  52. lancek1 says:

    Thats great. Well Done Alice.

  53. Beautiful socks! Alice, I found your blog a few weeks ago and I’m loving it. Am recently back to knitting after many years of not; and a few weeks ago I taught myself to crochet. For some reason I’d always thought that it was tricky – but it isn’t. And that’s how I found your blog.
    When you made that lovely shawl/scarf for your friend using Motif #36, I looked up the book online, found it, ordered it and it arrived today. I’m not quite sure where to start – there are so many incredible patterns and shapes. I’ve settled on a yarn I love – a locally hand-dyed and balled blend of cotton twisted with bamboo. It’s soft and great to work with – slightly uneven. I like the feel.

    Your colour combinations and abundance of created items really is inspiring and I’m delighted to have rediscovered needle crafts.

    warm wishes, Lisa (South Africa) (not about knitting or crochet!)

  54. Sandi says:

    YUMMM, they look sooooo warm and not too big. Raymond would look so cute with little matching ones hehe.
    x Sandi

  55. Karisma says:

    Oh they are most loverly! I am compelled to make myself some, if only I had time. LOL. I have a knit/crochet list a mile long at the moment. First on the list a pair of slippers for my son who has been patiently waiting all year. He will need them for winter.🙂

  56. Sandra says:

    Fab socks! I am making such slow progress with mine!

  57. Margaretha says:

    What a fantastic pair of socks and you did very well. Totally love the colour too!!!!!!!!!!

  58. white lavender says:

    Wonderful, what a thrill for you. They look really cool. Have almost finished my 1st pair of sox also and will give them to my daughter. Next pair are MINE. Love the wool. Enjoy your blog.Kind Regards S.

  59. Alyson says:

    Beautiful! I have tried (without success) knitting socks. I frogged the whole thing and instead used the yarn for a pixie hat for my little girl. Rainbow socks are the BEST! Well done- and I look forward to your next pair!

  60. Liza Flores says:

    Dear Alice,
    I just saw your blog and I must say what a beautiful, colorful,and happy place to visit. Love your patterns I already did a pot holder. You have a eye for color and everything goes so well. And I love Raymond he seems such a happy kitty. I love cats and I have one that is part siamese and pershian her name is jasmine. Please keep up your lovely work and the love of color and yarn. Your an artise!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  61. DebbyMcC says:

    Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous!! And I am so excited about the directions from yesterday and today by Lauri! I may actually try socks again someday now =-)

  62. Betsy says:

    Lovely, lovely socks! And yes, socks can become quite addicting and they’re nice projects to carry in your bag or pocket to be pulled out and worked on anywhere, anytime! Thank you lovely Laurie for your hints on casting on and when to decrease the toes. I’ve always guessed at the toe decrease, this helps a lot.

  63. Michelle says:

    I love them! Well done you. I feel very inspired to continue learning to knit and learn to knit socks. x

  64. scottishfairynuff says:

    Your socks are amazing! I had exactly the same problem with socks being way too big, so they were thrown in the wool basket. However, thanks to the kind instructions from Lauri, I am going to rescue them and try again. The wool was way too expensive and I knew that eventually I would find my way back to them.

    Mad hatter socks sound very intriguing.

  65. Pati from London says:


  66. Monique says:

    Oh wow, I like your socks. Very colourful. Nice done.

  67. Congrats!! I really need to finish my first pair of socks that was started in January and has been lingering in limbo since…

  68. Sara says:

    They are lovely!

  69. kat @ slugs says:

    oooh I love them! I love rainbows. I love handknitted socks! Its like footed perfection. Ooooooh my fingers are so itchy to knit or crochet…too bad my hands are too full of children!

  70. Sandra Draper says:

    Hiya Alice~In~Rainbowland,

    Amazingly stunning socks, which are obviously a reflection of your stunning rainbow personality,
    you shine a beautiful golden light on all of those whom surround you, like an angelic aura.

    Wishing you and yours a magical, sparkley, shiney day, my friend.


  71. helen says:

    Hi I’m loving your blog the socks look amazing and all your crochet is sublime do you sell it I run a small store in Auckland and would love to stock you work if you ?

  72. Melody says:

    I’m sure someone else has already suggested this, but if you work your socks toe up you can try them on as you go, beginning your heel once the foot is the appropriate length…also a short row heel moves things along a little more quickly as well. Jmho

  73. Those rainbow socks are killer! Way to go!

  74. Juliadus says:

    Wow! What a nice socks you’ve made! I’m impressed! I can definitely say that these are one of the most beautiful handmade socks I’ve ever seen. I like everything: colors, yarn, shape. Great job!


  75. Leah says:

    Hi Alice, I adore your rainbow socks! They are gorgeous. Just in time for the mean changes in temperature we’re getting in Welly too. Have a fab week.

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