How to Knit Wool Socks

Whether you’re a seasoned knitter or have never picked up a pair of needles in your life, now is a wonderful time to make some socks.  Knitting is a fairly simple task and you can learn it fast with the use of YouTube tutorials.  

I knit a lot of socks in the winter time, however, spring and summer is a great time to start stocking up on those socks.  You can make them out of any kind of sock yarn and they will take quite awhile to make one pair.  I can whip up a pair in one week if I’m catching up on a Netflix series – although I don’t have time to binge watch now that the kids are home every day from school and we’ve started homesteading.

Wool socks have many benefits and last a very long time.  My husband absolutely loves his wool socks and even wears them in the summer.  If he had more pairs he would probably throw away every pair of synthetic & cotton store bought pair he owns. I suppose I should get working on the next 10 pairs.

What You Need:

  • One set of US size 1 double pointed needles OR 9″ circulars OR 24-32″ circular needles for magic loop
  • Approximately 400 yards of sock weight yarn 
  • Stitch markers
  • Yarn needle
  • Sock blockers

My Favorite Recipe:

  1. Using Judy’s Magic Cast-On and the magic loop method, cast on 12 or 14 stitches per needle depending on who the socks are for.
  2. Knit one round
  3. *K1, inc 1 by knitting through the front and back of the next stitch, k until there are 2 sts left on the 1st needle, inc 1, k1* Repeat on 2nd needle.
  4. Knit one round
  5. Repeat rounds 3 & 4 until there are 64 total stitches (or 32 per needle). It doesn’t matter if you end on an increase or a knit row, however for memory sake I end on a knit row every single time I knit a pair of socks.
  6. There are now two ways you can go. The first way is to just simply knit in the round until the heel. The other way is to *K2, P2* across the first needle, Knit across the 2nd needle. Repeat this step until your sock measures according to the Fish Lips Kiss Heel (FLK) line for toe-up socks. I make them both ways all the time. 
  7. Make the heel using the FLK method (you can find the method for $1 on Ravelry.com) or other preferred method for toe-up socks. The FLK is by far my favorite heel and currently the only heel I use after trying many types. It takes awhile to get the hang of what the directions are trying to say, but eventually you’ll get the hang of it and it will be ingrained in your brain for life. 
  8. *K2, P2* until sock reaches half an inch below the length you desire. I like shorter socks so I usually do about 10-20 rows here. My husband prefers longer socks so I go about 60 rounds on his socks.
  9. *K1, P1* for 10 rows or about a half an inch. 
  10. Bind off using the Simple Stretchy Bind Off by Very Pink Knits Simple Stretchy Bind Off

Where to Learn How to Knit:

Very Pink Knits on YouTube – Every time I need some instruction, I pull up her channel. Her videos are extremely clear and easy to follow.  If you ever need clarification, Very Pink Knits is the place to look for it. I also own several great knitting books that have all the answers. Maybe someday I will make some videos on how to knit, but for now there are so many great resources out there already.

A Word to the Wise: 

Even if your yarn states it can be machine washed and dried… don’t do it. You will end up with one felted sock and one that fits. They may even shrink significantly. I learned this the hard way on a $23 hank of superwash yarn that makes 1 pair of socks.  There are only certain yarn brands that I will wash regularly. Hand wash your socks and dry them on a drying rack or clothesline. It may be time consuming but they will last a very long time and retain their size.

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