Deciding on a Heel Stitch

March 20, 2015

I never knew the heel was so special. I never knew it would consume so much of my time, or research. I consider myself an intermediate knitter, most days. When it comes to the heel of my fourth “pair” of socks (I admit it, the cats led the third pair into the beginnings of second sock syndrome, which I plan to resolve shortly after this pair is knit), I still need to look up how to set up and distribute the stitches to knit the heel. This was not included in the instructions. I wish it was, but not including it gives me a great chance to plug a favorite helpful site:

http://www.cometosilver.com/socks/SockClass_Start.htm

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Maeve inspecting the knitting

I have used this site for many a sock question: How do you turn the heel? How do you divide the stitches when not specifically told? How do you create a heel of a sock? What the heck am I doing? Which needle is needle #1 again? Silver only asks for a donation if you can give it. I try to when I use the site.

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Scamp investigating my heel knitting

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Both girls checking on my progress, Scamp pretends she’s not interested

Now, I have the heel stitches divided and am ready to knit the heel. But first, I must make another decision: which heel to knit. I get three choices–the stockinette stitch heel, the slip stitch rib heel and the eye of partridge heel. If I were knitting solely in black, I might choose the stockinette stitch or the slip stitch rib as the stitch will not be noticeable. However, I’m planning to switch to cream(finally!) about half way through the heel. That means the eye of partridge will be a treat to knit, since I haven’t knit that one up to this point. Each heel does come with specific instructions in this section. Let’s see how it goes.

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Half-way done with the heel

I’ve knit the heel and I chose the eye of partridge stitch. It was a little tricky on the black yarn, but I thought it best for the tension to keep the stitch the same. I knit four sets of four rows in black, then I switched to the cream for the last four sets.

Here is the heel after switching yarns:  

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I chose the half and half as I plan to make the bottom of the sock cream. I’m hoping to keep the top black. Currently, I’m jumping ahead to the foot. I want to keep the higher part of the gusset black and wondering if I should knit in the round and carry the cream thread along the stitches for the gusset reduction. The other option is to knit both colors together for the reduction of the gusset, which will make for a tight stitch and could change the tension.

I’ll have to decide once I get there, because I’m almost winging this from this point out. I’ll still follow a standard sock pattern, but not many are knit like this. I am considering knitting two rows at a time knit and purl to keep the colors separated. First, though, I need to turn the heel. That part’s almost looking easy compared to the sections to come.

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