Socks from the Toe Up- My Sock Knitting Bible!


So, before I show you pictures of my newest finished objects, I wanted to do a review of what is probably my favorite knitting book in the universe. Wendy Johnson’s (is it stalker-ish of me to admit that I read her blog every day?) Socks from the Toe Up (BN/Amazon/Ravelry link) is my go-to sock knitting book. I think I bought it just after I had made my first pair of socks- a traditional cuff-down, heel flap, DPN pair made in a Encore Worsted. The socks had turned out OK, and I was really interested in trying my hand at some new ones. Luckily for me, one of my LYSs was going out of business and I was able to snag quite a few skeins of sock yarn on the cheap.

Shamelessly Sniped from Barnes and Nobles (link above)

I think I started with a pair of On-Hold Socks in some navy Wildefoote Luxury Sock on size US0 needles. Here’s my project page. Those socks came out just a smidge too small, but that one pattern was all it took to get me addicted to knitting socks. Particularly, Wendy Johnson’s Toe-Up Socks.

On-Hold Socks

Since then, I’ve tweaked my recipe just a bit. After experimenting with my Knit Picks nickle-plated DPN sampler set, I now know that if I use my US1.5’s I get a perfect fit on the size M, which should be just a bit bigger than my foot. I guess I’m a tight knitter then, especially on the DNPs. I’ve also learned that if I go 5 inches from my toe increases then that’s the perfect time to start increasing for my gusset- that took a bit of trial and error.

Trilobite Socks in Knit Picks Stroll Multi

In the end, though, I think I’ve knitted about 9 of these patterns- some more than once. I really can’t recommend this book enough- especially for people who are just starting out knitting socks. It has three plain-jane basic patterns, 16 lace patterns with varying degrees of difficulty, 3 gansey socks, 2 cabled, and even 3 patterns in sport weight. The introduction also has tons of information on knitting socks from materials like needles, accessories, and yarn to some great, simple illustrations on different techniques. I would definitely check this book out!

Lace Rib Socks in Northern Lights Fiber Co. Solar Flare Sock


2 responses »

  1. Wendy’s GenericToe-Up Sock is my go-to pattern. I have knitted it enough times that I no longer need to refer to it (not that that is any great accomplishment; it is dead easy). Tweaked it a little for my high instep (short-row heel worked on half + six stitches instead of on exactly half), and I know if I cast on 30 st on a US#0 and resist the urge to knit tightly the sock will fit my foot perfectly. Switch to a US#1 about two inches above the last short row and the leg, especially if knit in a rib, will fit perfectly. Cast off with a stretchy bind off and I have a new pair of socks.

    But I need to expand my sock vocabulary. Maybe I need a new book…

  2. Pingback: Finished Object: Socks! | collegeknitting

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