Kiwiyarns Knits

A blog about New Zealand yarns, knitting and life

Grinch socks


A long session Skyping with my daughter had me finish these socks this morning.  I put them on, and immediately felt like I’d put on a pair of the Grinch’s socks!  The colourway, combined with  the scrunched-down look I gave the sock leg are quite ‘pixie’ in effect.  So cute!

It’s so nice to have a fresh, new pair of socks to wear.  Yes, these are MINE!!!  I cast them on as my “to knit when Skyping and waiting for Eric to finish his supper” socks, so they have taken a while to complete.   I think the thing I like most about knitting socks is that when you are done, you are done.  It’s such a buzz to get to the last little bit and see a completed object in front of me.  All you have to do (generally) is weave in the tail, kitchener the toe (unless you’ve done toe-up, and then there’s even one less step!), and you’re done!

Here they are before I kitchenered the toe (I always try them on at this stage to make sure I’ve got the length right before finishing).

Although I block everything else I do, I don’t bother with socks.  My philosophy is that they get blocked on the feet. ;p

I’m not entirely happy with the way the stitches look.  I cast on 60 stitches, which creates a nice fitting sock except that the stitches then look a bit stretched.  However, 64 stitches only work when I have a finer yarn – in the yarn I’ve used (no longer available), the socks ends up being too loose.  I suppose I could have used smaller needles, and 64 stitches.  I used 2.5mm needles, but could have gone down to 2.25mm (size 1).  That would have given me less width, but more fabric to stretch at the bits that needed to.

Alternatively, I’m thinking that perhaps when I turn the heel, I shouldn’t reduce back down to 60, but stop at 64 stitches, to provide more give in that area.  I could then reduce for the toe a bit sooner, and have a more gentle toe decrease to get rid of the extra width.

Any expert sock knitters out there who have an opinion?  I’d love to have some advice!


Author: kiwiyarns

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15 thoughts on “Grinch socks

  1. I’m glad you managed to get a pair in for yourself – they’re lovely. Just in time for cooler weather!

  2. One day I will try socks. These are gorgeous.

  3. I don’t know anything about knitting socks, but these are cute! What kind of yarn did you use?

    • Thanks. 🙂 They’re just the basic sock pattern, but it’s the colourway that makes them extra pretty I think. I used an 80% merino, 20% nylon New Zealand sock yarn that is no longer made. It was hand-dyed by an indie dyer.

  4. Obviously I’m NOT an expert sock knitter because these look perfect to me … the color is incredible!

  5. I know you said that you don’t block socks, but you could try blocking those ones. Maybe blocking the will give them just a little bit more ease so that the stitches don’t look stretched.

  6. It is an excellent idea to go for 64 stitches after the heel but I personally would also increase to 64 BEFORE the heel. Socks get quite tight for me around the whole ankle area so I think any extra stitches in this area are an advantage. I knit toe up rather than cuff down like these are so I do it in opposite order but it comes to the same thing in the knitted product. But I don’t have to Kitchener (I hate Kitchener).

  7. Love the colours of your new socks! I am still working out my sock recipe. I prefer a rounder toe and you seem to get that from the toe up pattern and I also read a tip about knitting the top of your socks in a larger gauge needle to help with the fit. My calf muscles are huge so I think I am going to have to try that tip as my cuffs always look so stretched. I think it is just a matter of playing till you get socks that you like as we are all different. I just ordered some Hiya Hiya small 9″ cirlulars so hopefully I will be able to manage them and give up the DPNS for ever 🙂

  8. Fabulous socks! I love the flashes of blue in amongst the green.

    Where are you finding that it’s tight with a 60st cast on? Stopping your decreases earlier at the gusset sounds like a great idea. It works the other way too – I’ve often done the opposite and forgotten to stop decreasing! I like a snug fit though, so it’s usually worked out fine 🙂

    Alternatively, if 60sts fits fine in the cuff then you could always add in some increases after the cuff, either straight after or spaced out further down the leg depending on which would give you the fit you need. As for the toe, I like a rounded toe so I often start by decreasing every other row, and then towards the end I switch to decreasing every row. I love your idea of trying on the socks to check for length! I’m always too impatient to get them sewn up and on my feet 😛

    • Those are great suggestions, thank you! I put my socks on and had a close look at where the tightness was – it’s at the point of divide for the heel, so I think your suggestion of adding an increase before dividing (about an inch before I think) might do the trick. I’m very happy with the toes on my socks (I always stop decreasing at 10 stitches on each side which is perfect for me).

  9. Well, I’m not an expert, but in my opinion the characteristics of the yarn affects the stitch definition, so maybe this is the best you can get out of this yarn. Besides, I don’t see any problem with those emerald socks, the stitches are fine.

    • That’s an accurate observation about stitch definition. I know I can get these stitches not to stretch though. The first socks I knitted in this yarn (a different colourway) were in 64sts. They were fine, except that they are a tiny bit wide for my liking. 60 sts works better, except at the ankle where you get stretching!