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Lesson 2 - August 2, 2022

Choosing a Pattern

To prepare to knit your socks, the first step is to choose between our beginner and intermediate sock patterns.

For this knitalong, you have a choice between basic, beginner socks or more challenging built-in heel flap socks.

Your Toe-Up Socks class videos will show you how to follow either of these patterns.

Basic Beginner Socks

Fingering-Weight Baby Socks made using our Generic Toe-Up Sock pattern
If this is your first time knitting socks, I recommend you knit our basic Fleegle Heel socks. They have a very streamlined heel, use fewer steps than traditional socks, and they fit great.

Additionally, we have patterns available for these socks in almost every weight of yarn, plus a generic pattern if your yarn weight or foot size isn't covered by the existing patterns.

Toe-Up Heel-Flap Socks

If you want to knit toe-up socks with a heel flap, we have a pattern for that, too. This sock is a BIT more complex than the beginner socks above, so I would not recommend it for a first sock.

These socks have a "faux" or "built-in" heel flap (no picking up stitches like on a traditional heel flap). The pattern enables you to do three things you can't do with our basic socks. You can:

  1. Adjust the pattern for high insteps,
  2. Knit a contrasting-color heel, and
  3. Use textured heel-stitch patterns like the Eye-of-the-Partridge stitch.

Think about which of the two patterns is right for you, then read on to choose a yarn weight.

What Weight of Yarn Should You Choose?

Once you have decided which of our two basic patterns you'd like to follow, you can decide which weight of yarn is right for you.

Imagiknit is giving a discount on Worsted, Aran, and Fingering-Weight yarn.

Recommended for First-Timers: Aran-Weight (Heavy Worsted) or Worsted-Weight Yarn

Blue ShiBui worsted-weight toe-up socksAran-weight or worsted-weight yarn is recommended for a first sock. The socks are a quick knit and you can use them for lounging around the house.

In addition, the videos in your Toe-Up Socks class show the pattern being followed with aran-weight yarn. The patterns are the same for other weights of yarn, just the numbers differ, but if you want to stick as closely as possible to the videos you'll be watching, choose aran-weight yarn.

To Wear Inside Real Shoes: Fingering-Weight Yarn

fingering weight top down socks purple araucanía book med 92921
Fingering-weight socks knit with Araucanía sock yarn
For a sock you can actually wear inside shoes, choose fingering-weight yarn. This yarn is much thinner than worsted-weight yarn and the socks will take longer to knit, so be prepared for a more intensive knitalong if you choose this option.

However, if you are ready for a challenge and to complete a pair of socks you would actually wear outside the house, choose fingering-weight yarn.

Lounge Socks: Bulky and Super-Bulky Yarn

JSSBO on Lizzis Super Bulky Toe Up SocksTo make your sock project go incredibly fast, you can choose a soft and extra-thick yarn in bulky- or super-bulky-weight. This will make your knitalong a walk in the park, and you'll probably be done before you know it.

A warning: these socks won't be very durable and, even if you wear slippers while walking around in them, they will probably wear out within 6 months to a year. However, they'll be deliciously warm and perfect for wearing to bed on cold nights.

Once you've decided whether to knit our basic or heel-flap socks and what weight of yarn is right for you, choose a pattern below and download it.

Basic, Beginner Socks:

Faux-Heel-Flap Socks:

Good job! In the following lessons, you'll choose your yarn and needles, check your gauge, and measure your foot and choose the size of sock to make.

Post Your Questions in the Comments

Leave a comment below if you have a question about choosing your sock pattern or anything else in the knitalong.

49 thoughts on “Choosing a Pattern”

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  1. I am going to knit two at a time toe up socks. I am using fingering weight yarn. I tried the magic loop but need to redo as I noticed I was doing it incorrectly. I will watch the video several more times to get it right. Looking forward to conquering this method.

  2. Pamela Pettibone

    On August 3 I was diagnosed with covid, so I’m a bit behind on the KAL. I’ve chosen my pattern and yarn (Fleegle heel with a worsted wool), but still haven’t gotten the hang of the magic cast on. Very excited to get going!

    1. Hi Pamela,
      It’s great to hear from you! Thanks for coming and posting here. I’m so sorry you got COVID! I hope you’re feeling better now and I hope you know you’re certainly not behind. We are just on Judy’s Magic Cast-On (JMCO) now and everyone’s going at their own pace. Nobody is in exactly the same spot. Please let me know how it goes with JMCO and if you feel stuck!
      Cheers,
      Liat

  3. I have chosen the Beginner Toe-Up TAAT socks with fleegle heel Aran weight with size 8 47 inch needle. However, I received a Dreamz needle instead of an Addi. I have ordered a ChiaGoo. I am a little behind but I have made TAAT toe-up socks on magic loop before. Hopefully, I can keep up. This is my first KAL. I am very excited.

    1. Hi Catherine!

      I’m so glad you joined this KAL! You are not behind – everyone is still checking their needles, gauge, size, etc. before we begin. And a lot of knitters have chosen to do fingering-weight socks, so we may go a little slower than you in the end!

      I’m really sorry to hear about the Dreamz needle. Imagiknit was running short on size 8 Addis. I have volunteered to pay the return shipping on any KAL kit items you may have bought from them that don’t work out, so feel free to call them and arrange a return.

      Thanks so much,
      Liat

  4. Hello, Liat — Although I have made a few pairs of top-down heel-flap socks, I’ve chosen the basic beginner sock, because I’d like to learn the Fleegle heel. My computer is very old, as am I, so
    fingers crossed that I can access everything.

    1. I am awaiting an Imagiknit kit with size 8 needles for 220 Superwash Aran around-the-house socks. Looking forward to TAAT toe-up!

  5. Hi Liat,

    I’ll be knitting the Toe-Up Heel-Flap Socks with a high instep, fingering weight yarn, on size 2 needles.

    My gauge is slightly tighter than the pattern, but I successfully modified both your Fleegle heel toe up and your top down socks with a different gauge, so am eager to test my sizing skills again. I’m also adding a lace panel up the front, which I’ve not mastered yet. I’m very busy practicing the lace so I can be ready by the time the KAL finishes the toes.

    Now that I’ve put all that in writing, it sounds very ambitious and perhaps too many new skills. I’m so glad you created this KAL right before I started these sox! I’m looking forward to your help, and working through the challenges with other knitters.

    1. Fabulous! What is the lace panel pattern? How many stitches wide will you do? I’d love to see the instructions if you want to post them here. The lace panel will make the sock a bit stretchier… something to keep in mind when striking out on your own with gauge, etc. :)

      You’re going to do great. This is just the right amount of challenge.

      Hugs,
      L

      1. Thanks for the tip on stretchiness.
        Unfortunately I’ve yet to get a test block to even vaguely resemble the lace design. :( I’m trying again with light-colored sport/baby yarn instead of the teal worsted I had been practicing with. I also found some cables I might try if I can’t get the lace right.
        Once I get the pattern settled, I’ll be happy to share.

        1. Ok! Cables will make the sock a bit tighter (which is fine, just something to keep in mind. You’ll just incorporate them when you check your gauge). Let me know if you need help with your lace pattern.
          Glad to see you’re challenging yourself! And that you’re trying again with a light-colored yarn.
          L

          1. I was finally able to make the lace pattern recognizable. Unfortunately I didn’t like any of that one, or the couple of others I tried out with my sock yarn. I’m going with a simple pattern I designed instead of a challenging one.

  6. I chose the basic worsted weight pattern and ordered a kit but realized I ordered the wrong size of needle. :( My kit is supposed to arrive on Monday the 8th).

    Also, I am a bit concerned about the lessons as my husband and I will be out of town for a few days from the 16th-19th, so I won’t be able to KAL! Will this create a problem for me?????

    1. Hi Deb!
      What needle size did you order? Being out of town for a few days will not be a problem at all. We will just be casting on and you can practice the cast on before you leave or after you get back. There will be plenty of time. :)
      Liat

  7. Jacqueline Spreizer

    I picked the Beginner Toe-Up Socks with Fleegle Heel pattern. I picked up 2 skeins of Merino Aran by Yarn Bee but I didn’t realize till later that that yarn is heavier than worsted weight yarn that’s called for in the pattern. I’ve tried knitting socks before but they turn out too big, so obviously I need to knit a swatch first. (I thought I was just going to have to resign myself to doing an afterthought heel so I could first make a tube sock that fit.) I knit continental style and don’t think I knit that loosely. I’ve tried to knit tighter but that hurt my hands. Should I just get some worsted weight yarn and start with the recommended needle size? Thanks!

    1. Hi Jacqueine! (Did I spell your name right?)

      I think you will be fine with your choice of yarn. Our beginner pattern calls for a gauge of 4.5 sts/in. I don’t want you do try to knit tightly – that’s not the idea at all. Just choose a smallish needle, say, US Size 7, to do your gauge swatch and see if you get 4.5 sts/in. You can even use a size 6 needle. If your gauge is too big, you can just use our generic pattern to fit the sock to your foot without worrying about gauge. Or you can get a thinner yarn. It’s up to you. But you have many options! Start by knitting a swatch in the round on Magic Loop (you can follow our free video here) – cast on 30 sts and knit for 6 rounds and then measure your gauge.

      By the way, this is all coming up in future lessons so please don’t feel rushed. Just order your needle if you need to, and relax. :)

      1. Jacqueine Spreizer

        It’s Jacqueline, but I go by Jackie, thanks! I started my swatch using a size 6 needle and the yarn I have. I’ve done Magic Loop knitting before and it’s great. I’ll check in again once I know the gauge. Thank you:)

          1. Would you take a look at my blocked swatch? For some reason it’s hard to see the V’s on the knit side. It’s consistent but almost has a ribbed appearance. I think it’s just the yarn that I’m using. I am getting 5 stitches per inch so that’s good for the sock pattern I want to use. Thanks.

            1. Hi Jackie,
              The swatch looks great! Thanks for attaching a nice, big photo. I can see the V’s just fine. I think you may be noticing that one side of the V’s is a little more vertical, and the other half of the V is at more of an angle. This may be because of the way you knit or it could be just the yarn. Either way, not a problem. The swatch looks lovely and it’s nice and tight so your socks will be more durable. Congratulations on getting gauge!

              1. Hi Liat,
                I started the first sock and the gauge is still correct at 5 stitches per inch. My foot is 9 inches around at the widest point so I used the large size in the fleggel heel pattern which is 20 stitches on each needle. I’ve gone 2 inches past the toe increases and the sock is too big for me! Laying flat the sock measures 4 inches across. Am I doing something wrong because socks always seem to make up to be too large for me? Thanks!

    2. Hi Jackie,
      I’m replying to your comment about the sock size here because the website doesn’t let me nest more than 5 replies.
      It sounds like your sock is coming out the right size and your gauge is correct. 4 inches across would mean 8 inches in circumference, which is about 10% less than the circumference of your foot (9 inches). So the sock should be stretching onto your foot and fit correctly. I’m thinking maybe you’re not measuring your foot in the right spot if the sock is too big. It should be measured around the ball of the foot, which is about right where you are or a little closer to the toes. You don’t want to be measuring around where your ankle is, or anything. What size shoe do you wear? And what does your foot measure right around the ball?
      Thanks,
      Liat

  8. I need to start with the beginner sock. I had already ordered the kit (it came promptly) with the fingering weight yarn (one skein, wound into two balls) and size 2 needles. Now I see that I should have ordered Aran or worsted weight. I certainly don’t mind ordering more yarn! I have only used ChiaoGoo needles and am looking forward to trying Addi.

    1. Hi Barbara,
      Great to meet you! If you are a beginner at socks, I do recommend starting with the thicker yarn. You can save the fingering yarn and needles for your very next sock project – it won’t go unused. :) You can try either aran or worsted weight – both options are available at ImagiKnit. I think they are running out of size 8 Addis for the aran kit (they are offering a bamboo needle instead), so if you want you can do worsted weight option and the size 7 Addi needle. I really like Addis but I hear good things about ChiaGoo as well. Let me know here in the comments what you end up choosing or if you need any guidance before ordering!

      Cheers,
      Liat

  9. I plan to make the worsted weight sock. I’ve ordered the kit from ImagiKnit, but it seems to have taken a trip other than to me. My post office is checking it out.

  10. Hello Liat and Fellow Sock Knitters,
    I’ve always wanted to try the Fleegle Heel; so it’s the beginner sock in fingering for me. I ordered the kit to see what the Addis are like. Thank you for arranging the discount! I’m ashamed to say I have never done a gauge swatch, so here goes …

    1. Hi Diana,
      Fabulous! This is a great choice. If you’ve never tried Addis you’re in for a treat. I’m glad you are going to do a gauge swatch for this project! There’s a first time for everything… and I really want your socks to fit.
      See you on the next lesson!
      L

  11. I’m going to create the beginner worsted yarn, size small to large. I to am having a hard time practicing the magic loop cast on. Please post which cast on I should be using and t/t for knitting in the round. So excited for the Kal!

    1. Hi Carolyn,

      Thanks for posting! Good to know what pattern you will be using, although I’m not clear on which size you chose. But we’ll go over size in an upcoming lesson, so that’s fine for now.

      The cast-on we will be using is called Judy’s Magic Cast On and you can watch the video on it here: https://www.knitfreedom.com/my-classes/toe-up-socks/cast-on-for-socks-and-knit-toe/#learn-judys-magic-cast-on

      We will be getting to the cast on after every has their materials, pattern, and gauge swatches ready, so if you are feeling shaky on the cast-on, don’t worry – we haven’t really gotten there yet. But the link I posted above has several videos explaining the cast-on if you’d like to be practicing now.

      Let me know how it goes! If you have questions on the cast-on, you can leave a comment here: https://www.knitfreedom.com/knitalong-lesson/cast-on-questions/ (You can find it in the “Ask Questions Ahead” section in the sidebar).

  12. Kathleen Carlborg

    I will knit the worsted-weight faux-heel flap socks pattern. I have knit a lot of socks for homeless people using my own version of this pattern. I have started out the socks two at a time but never got very far but I will try again. I will be using two yarns held together(one a worsted weight wool and the other a sock yarn that is 75% superwash wool and 25% Nylon. I also use size 5 needles because I read the if you knit them more tightly, they will be more durable. I’ve never done a gauge before so maybe it’s time to try

    1. Hi Kathleen,

      Great to meet you! I’m so glad you joined this knitalong so you can get the two-at-a-time technique under your belt. It will make knitting socks for the homeless even more fun.

      Thanks also for letting me know what yarn and needles you will be using. It is good to knit tightly so that the socks are durable. You’ll also need to make sure to make a gauge swatch so that the socks come out the right size (if you are making them to fit someone in particular, that is).

      We’ll be checking gauge in the coming lessons so we’ll circle back to that.

      Liat

  13. Hi Liat,
    I decided to knit the worsted-weight faux-heel flap socks pattern. The yarn is an aran one, 2 Balls of 100g with 230 yards per Ball, from stash, I bought it a few years ago, so I’m really happy to knit my first TAAT Toe-up Socks with it.

    Cheers
    Maria

    1. Hi Maria,

      Fabulous, thank you for letting me know! You will probably only need one ball of yarn total, but since you have two anyway, you might as well knit from each ball instead of dividing one ball into two.

      To knit the worsted-weight heel-flap socks, you’ll need to get a gauge of 4.5 sts/in. We’ll check gauge in the coming lessons to make sure your socks will fit perfectly.

      Cheers,
      Liat

  14. I’m going to try the heel flap socks, two at a time, on circular needle. Fingering weight yarn. So excited!

  15. Hi Liat – Yesterday, I decided to knit worsted-weight faux-heel flap socks and ordered yarn and a needle. Then I reconsidered. Years ago, with a class through my LYS, I knit one pair of worsted-weight socks on magic loop (one at a time; and I did knit the second sock ;-)). So, today I decided to knit the faux-heel flap in fingering weight and ordered an ImagiKnit kit which comes with the yarn (wound in two balls) and a 47″ circ size 2. I know this will take me a long time but I want socks I can wear out. I’m excited to take on two-at-a-time as well. I’m in my typical anxious state starting a more challenging project than I’ve done so far. But, I know with your videos I can do this! Ever grateful for your comprehensive clear and thorough video classes. Thanks!

  16. Betty-Anne Campbell

    Hi Liat,
    I am doing a basic pattern for beginners in worsted weight yarn. ( if it ever arrives). Size medium-large. I have been practising stitches and am having difficulty with Judy’s cast on so more practise. I have no idea what my gauge will be……

    1. Hi Betty-Ann!

      I’m sorry to year your yarn hasn’t arrived! Seems like another student is experiencing delays, too. If you ordered from Imagiknit you may want to contact them (415.621.6642/[email protected]) so they know what’s going on.

      Once you get your yarn we’ll do a gauge swatch and make sure you’re on target so that your socks fit.

      If you practice a bit more and are still having difficulty with the cast-on, let me know what’s happening for you and I’ll help you. You can leave a comment here with questions about your cast-on (it’s in the “Ask Questions Ahead” section in the sidebar).

  17. Connie Lindstrand

    I have knitted a pair of socks before but would like to closely follow along with your videos so I have ordered the worsted weight kit. Will the videos still be available to us after the knit along so I can try the pattern with the heel flap next?

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