Wild Mittens & Unruly Socks
These Merry Skull Socks incorporate a reinforced French heel and a wedge toe. The gusset decreases are placed under the foot. You can choose to make either long socks or regular ones. There’s no shaping at the leg part of the sock, so these are a better fit for people with narrow calves!
Skill level: Experienced.
SIZE: U. S. 7.5 / European 38
GAUGE: 28 sts and 30 rows = 4 x 4 in / 10 x 10 cm of stranded knitting. Adjust needle size to obtain correct gauge if necessary
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You Will Need
With Color A and smaller needles, cast on 64 sts (16 sts / needle) and join to work in the round. Work k2, p2 ribbing for 10 rows. Increase 2 sts on the last row of ribbing. You now have 66 sts. With Color A, k 1 row. Change to larger needles and begin stranded knitting following Row 1 of Chart A for long socks or Row 21 of Chart A for regular socks. Note: Each sock has its own chart. Divide the stitches onto the needles as indicated by vertical lines.
On Row 61 of Chart A, knit the sts on Ndl 1 onto Ndl 4. These 33 sts are used for the heel. Cut Color B, and use Color A for the heel.
HEEL FLAP: Turn work, p33. Turn work. Row 1: K2, *slip 1, k1*. Repeat * to *, until 3 sts remain, slip 1, k2. Turn work. Row 2: K2, p29, k2. Turn work. Repeat Rows 1 and 2 until the heel flap is 30 rows. You are now at the beginning of right side.
TURN HEEL: Row 1: K2, (slip 1, k1) 8 times, ssk, k1, turn work. Row 2: Slip 1 purlwise, p4, p2tog, p1, turn work. Row 3: Slip 1, *k1, slip 1*; repeat * to * until 1 st before the gap, ssk (1 st on both sides of the gap), k1, turn work.
Row 4: Slip 1 purlwise, p until 1 st before the gap, p2tog (1 st on either side of the gap), p1, turn work. Repeat Rows 3 and 4 until all the side stitches have been decreased. You now have 19 sts on the needle and you are at the beginning of the right side.
RIGHT FOOT: Slip 1 knitwise, k9. Pick up Color B. Begin Row 1 on Chart B and knit the first 9 sts. Pick up and knit 16 sts along the left side of the heel flap following the chart. Continue chart on Ndls 2 and 3. Pick up and knit 16 sts along the right side of the heel flap following the chart. Knit the 10 remaining heel flap stitches onto Ndl 4. This is the new beginning of row.
LEFT FOOT: Slip 1 knitwise, k8. Pick up Color B. Begin Row 1 on Chart B and knit the first 10 sts. Pick up and knit following the chart for 16 sts along the left side of the heel flap. Continue chart on Ndls 2 and 3. Pick up and knit following the chart for 16 sts along the right side of the heel flap. Knit the 9 remaining heel flap stitches onto Ndl 4. This is the new beginning of row.
Continue Chart B and work gusset decreases following the chart. At the top of Chart B, switch to Chart A and work the first 21 rows. Change to smaller needles and Color A, and begin toe. Toe is plain stockinette stitch. If the toe seems too large or your gauge changes, you can also work with two strands of Color A held together (take one yarn end from the outside and the other from the inside of the ball). K 1 row and begin toe decreases.
TOE DECREASES: At the end of Ndls 1 and 3, k2tog, k1. At the beginning of Ndls 2 and 4, k1, ssk. Work increases 4 times on every 2nd row and then on every row until 18 sts remain. K 1 row. Next row: Decrease as follows: at the end of Ndls 1 and 3, k3tog, k1. At the beginning of Ndls 2 and 4, k1, sssk. With 10 sts remaining, cut the yarn and pull through stitches.
Weave in ends and steam press the socks lightly. This pattern benefits especially from steaming, because the points where changes were made between needles can be quite uneven.