Eleven days left in October. That’s how many days any self-respecting sock knitter has to finish at least one pair of socks to celebrate this most sacred month: Socktober. In the knitting world, this means knitting socks all month long. In the real world, it means collecting pairs of socks and donating them to homeless shelters, as in the USA. Either way, it’s all about socks.
It’s not too late to cast on a pair now if you haven’t already done so. And to help you along, here’s my top picks for sock patterns that will surely tickle your toes.
I hardly ever knit the same pattern more than twice, but this is the exception because I have 6 pairs of Cotty socks in my project page. Six! Not surprising really because this is potato-chippy, easy, fun and very wearable. Designed by dear Irishgirlie, Carrie Sullivan which she named after her great-aunt Cotty, this pattern is dead easy for confident beginners. Go on and give it a try. Don’t blame me if you get hooked!
Basic Ribbed Socks
With over 6,400 projects on Ravelry, this free, simple, basic ribbed sock pattern by Kate Atherley is a winner. It’s mostly mindless knitting, 2×2 rib all around until you get your desired leg length and then add a heel, turn, decrease the gusset, work the foot and the toe and you have a stretchy, comfy, pretty sock. Then you have to knit the other foot. And this is where most sock knitters fumble: the dreaded Second Sock Syndrome. Hopefully you won’t get afflicted by this while you knit up your 2015 Socktober project.
Another freebie, but with a bit of a challenge that is worth conquering. Travelling stitches that create an Arygle-effect. How cool is that? The yarn I chose does not exactly show the effect to its full potential so I see a new pair in my future using this pattern by the lovely Tanis Lavalee.
For a bit more challenge, how about a pair of socks fit for Dragonriders? Shur’tugal features faux cable stitches and purls that create the scale-like texture. Best shown off with semi-solid colourways, this pair works up quite quickly once you get the hang of the simple pattern. My favourite bit is the heel flap that looks like dragon claws cupping your heel. Alice Yu did wonderfully with this pattern.
Short rows? Check! Fun factor? Check! It looks really groovy too. I admit having issues when I first tried this, but found my rhythm so I kept at it. You need to use chunkier sock yarn for this, something that has a high stick factor so that your wraps do not gape too much. Or you can experiment with the short row method that works best for you. Either way, Susanne Kitzmann, thank you for a wonderful, free pattern.
Cookie A’s designs are all about symmetry and structure and shapes and this doesn’t disappoint. The pattern is mirrored for the left and right sock. The charts look daunting but once you start knitting, it will make sense. Not a free pattern, I’m afraid, but the book in which this pattern is featured is worth the investment. I modified the charts when I knitted this to allow for shorter legs, still worked like a charm though. The pair I made went into a sock swap which means I need to knit another pair for myself soon.
Super Simple Short Sock
Every knitter has a stash of leftover yarns, right? Sometimes stripey projects use up only a little of the contrast colour so what do you do with all that leftover yarn? You knit a pair of these sweet ankle socks, of course! It’s super easy as you only do a few rows of the cuff, if you can call it that, and then work on the heel and then the foot, which is the most knitting that you will do. These are perfect house socks! Free pattern by Meghann Holcomb.
Charybdis and Plain Vanilla Socks
I’m counting this as two! I recently made plain vanilla socks using the above pattern by Keri McKiernan, but I was using a self-striping yarn and didn’t want to break the colours so I looked around for the right kind of heel to use. I decided on the afterthought heel in Charybdis by Fiona Bennett. Worked like a charm! In terms of looks, plain vanilla socks are the closest thing to store-bought socks. Bit of ribbing on the cuff, stockinette leg and foot, short-row heels sometimes and you have a classic pair that you can use any time.
Okay, bit of a shameless plug here really. Don’t hate me. I designed this pair a while ago and have been meaning to knit up a few more pairs. Maybe a pair for everyone in the family? It’s basically ribbing that travels down the leg and the foot. You can mirror the ribbing if you like, but that’s optional. You can also plug in your favourite heel construction and still make the ribbing work for you. Best shown off in semi-solid yarn, but a bit of striping wouldn’t hurt either.
There you have it. Take your pick from my suggestions, if you are so inclined. I will come back with a post of my Socktober pair once the knitting is all done. Promise you’ll show me your socks, too? Happy knitting!