Difference between sock types...toe up, etc

Hi. I just learned how to knit socks from Silver’s sock class and started searching for sock patterns. I noticed that there are a lot of toe up socks and was wondering what the difference was, besides the obvious! :teehee:

Are there advantages or disadvantages to either? Is one harder than the other? If I can knit one should I be able to do the other?

TIA for any thoughts and suggestions!:stuck_out_tongue:

very little difference (sometimes!)
HUGE differences (other times!)

many knitting techniques are reversible --you can increase in one direction or decrease in the other directions…

but for socks, the big difference are
Cast ons /bind offs
(obviously use different castons for toe up and different bind offs too)

but there are cast ons that look like grafting, and cast off’s that look like cast ons…(so you can have almost identical socks…)

the HEEL is the main point of differences…

there are bi-directional heels (ie short row heels) and there are flat/turned/gusseted heels for toe up.

they are not identical… but close. IN APPEARENCE–in the process of creating them? there can be radical differences!

there are sock designers (tsock tsarina of the Fleece sock club) who have actually designed a pair of socks (one knit toe up, one knit cuff down) knit both ways…

the socks are not identical… but at first glance… they look it.

neither style is harder or easier… its just what you like or are used to…

(i alternate (not A/B, A/B,) and use both styles.
current sock on needles? cuff down, previous 2 pairs? toe up. before that 3 pairs in a row, cuff down…)

What I’ve noticed is that many people like toe-up socks because they don’t feel comfortable grafting the toe of a top down sock.

At least that was my excuse. However, many people find the toe-up cast on to be a bit challenging.

Another reason I’ve heard for using a toe up pattern is that if you are uncertain about having enough yarn to finish a sock, instead of running out of yarn before you get to the toe, you just make shorter socks.

I have found that there are many more sock patterns written for the top down method than for toe-up.

But I agree that it is just a matter of preference as far as the methods are concerned.

I’m not a huge sock knitting fan, so they are all the same to me.

Another reason some knitters like toe-up socks is that you can try them on as you go to ensure a good fit!

I happen to be a top down sock knitter. I hate the cast ons for toe up and I find that I get bored with the stitch pattern shortly after turning the heel and working up the leg so I tend to make the socks shorter than I like. I also prefer working the heel better on top down socks. I find that for an average woman’s foot that a 50g skein of sock yarn is plenty to make a sock with the leg length I like (about 7" to heel). I like kitchener stitch so all in all I tend to do top down. I also try on my socks as I work on them and have never had a problem. I use 5 needles so the stitches have plenty of room to expand without dropping off the needles as they go up my leg.
You’ll find that everyone has their own favorite ways of doing a lot of things and as long as you get a finished product you like and can use, then you’re doing it right.

Me too, Plantgoddess! I could have written this same post, including using size 5 needles with a 7" to heel length, except to close the toe, when i get down to a total of 12 stitches, I thread a plastic needle, then put it through each one of the stitches around, pull to close the gap and then weave the end in on the inside of the sock. I did try the kitchener stitch to close the toe one time, but I got lazy and went back to my ‘pull it closed’ method. (Sorry I got such a kick out of reading that you use the same measurements, needles, and that I also try my socks on when I get close to the toe - even though I know it is 7" from the heel, I just can’t help myself sometimes!):teehee:

Actually I use size 0-2 needles, but I knit using 5 needles as opposed to 4 so that the stitches fit around my foot and leg easier. I always tell myself I’m going to try different techniques, but once I’m ready to start a new project I go back to the familiar so I can make progress faster.

Ditto, Plantgoddess, except for using 5 needles. I do all my socks using ML. I also find that it just as easy to try on a cuff down sock as a toe up one, once the heel is in. You can seeexactly how much longer you need to make the foot. I’ve never come close to running out of yarn, because I use 2 different balls and sets of needles, so that I don’t have SSS. Both are finished at nearly the same time.