It's hard to find a pair of perfectly fitting socks—not too wide or too loose around your foot, the heel sitting at exactly the right height. I have small feet, but children's socks are too small and women's socks are too big. Maybe your feet are between sizes as well, or the cuffs on your socks always seem either too short or too tall. The solution to finding the perfect sock is simply crocheting your own.
When you crochet your own socks, you can control everything from foot diameter to sole length to leg length and cuff style, not to mention color.
Crochet socks can be worked from the toe up or from the cuff down. Regardless of which direction you choose to crochet your socks, it is essential to understand the parts of a sock.
When you are working from the cuff down, the first part of the sock is, of course, the cuff. It is best to work the cuff in a stitch that has plenty of stretch. Ribbing or a foundation double crochet or single crochet row are good options. But don't make your cuff too loose unless you are going for the slouchy look.
The next part of the sock is the leg. Have fun with the design and height of your leg. Work it in a different color as Karen did for the Basic Cuff-Down Sock Recipe (above) or try some colorwork like that in the Isafarmo Socks (below).
If you want short socks, you can skip the leg and move straight to the heel. After the heel, you will work the heel turn and gusset. You can add a few more stitches here if your foot is wide.
Now it is time to customize the foot length. If you are making the socks for yourself, go ahead and try them on as you go. If you have one foot that is slightly longer than the other, make your right sock a slightly different size than your left sock. If you are making the socks for a friend, Karen gives a wonderful chart for foot length broken down by standard shoe size in her feature Crochet Great Socks! in the Interweave Crochet Winter 2011 issue.
Last but not least, finish your socks off with the toe. If you are working your socks from the toe up, simply begin by crocheting the toe and work the sections in reverse.
Check out Karen Ratto-Whooley's article in the Winter 2011 issue of Interweave Crochet for more great tips on crocheting socks as well as a basic sock pattern. In this issue, you will also find a pattern for traditional socks from Tajikistan and fabulous knee socks.
For a great deal, order the entire Interweave Crochet 2011 Collection CD. You will find over 100 amazing patterns for slippers, hats, garments, and more at great savings. Plus you never have to worry about your pattern page being torn or destroyed.