Sunday, April 26, 2009

Pedicure Anyone?

After my first set of socks was done, I wanted to try another pair of toe-up socks (that is, starting at the toe instead of the calf) with a heel flap. It took some searching, but I finally found a tutorial that looked like it was what I was after.

I was interested in the project solely to try out the heel style, so I started the socks half way up the foot. I originally figured I could just rip out the sock and reuse the yarn once I had knit the heel but the sock soon let me know that it was a pedicure sock. So I knit it a mate and am now set to show off my pedicure!

The heel is technically a heel flap, but it is not the same as a traditional calf-down sock. In the above pic, the heel flap is the "rectangle" of vertical knitting on the back of the heel. The gusset is the "triangle" of extra stitches to the right of the heel flap. This is the important feature which allows the sock to expand in diameter around the heel. Project Stats
Started: 20 Mar 09
Finished: 9 Apr 09
Pattern: improvised from free tutorial
Materials: (free!) 1.5 balls Estelle Young Touch Cotton DK
(Much more comfortable than the short-row heel used in my previous socks, IMO.)

But you may notice that the gusset is only half as tall as the heel flap. On a traditional heel, the triangle is the same height as the heel flap. I'll be looking around some more for how to do a traditional heel on a toe-up sock, or perhaps just working it out on my own. Because surely what can be done going down can also be done going up. Surely.

And when I'm ready to try again, I have some lovely lime green in the same cotton which would also make some lovely summer socks! (Shout out to my sister who gave it to me!)

Here's another close up of the heel (pic above) which better shows the shape of the base of the heel. I had only known heel flaps with a rather square shape (not that my experience could in any imagination be called extensive), but this one uses short rows to round the heel to better match the shape of your foot.

To the left, the area enclosed in black lines was all done with the short rows. It makes the heel look a little funny off the foot, but really fits well when worn. Rounding the corners eliminates extra bulk that can get very uncomfortable when worn in shoes.

Of course, these socks will probably be mostly worn with open shoes--sandals and flipflops--but that only makes it important that the socks look like they fit well for different reasons. I wouldn't want an ugly heel to distract from a nice pedicure!

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