New ‘socker’

Hi first time at knitting socks…started small, toddler size, but seems to have unusually large ‘holes’ on the heel shaping bit…any ideas why…will try harder on the next one but feel there must be something I can do to correct this. I’m using magic loop, 16 stitches and German short rows

It may be that this method of finishing up the German short rows will help with the holes.

As an excellent sock knitter, @engblom may want to comment too.

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I am sorry because I do not know how to write this. I have written and erased the draft over and over and I simply do not know how to explain it in a good way so everybody understands it without making a video and right now I do not have time for such things.

The way I do GSR in the rounds I do not get this problem and I do not need any workaround (as in the article) to close the hole. I use Continental Combined knitting so the solution comes easy for me, but even when doing “normal” knitting it is possible to do the GSR correctly so no holes appear:

So, assume you are purling back the last time. When you are at the turning point turn your work and slip the first stitch knit-wise (changing orientation). Do the yarn-over and pull tight so the double stitch is formed. This is a normal GSR double stitch, but it is differently mounted on the needle. (It is mounted as if you would have been doing combined knitting.) Now work around. When you approach this double stitch from the other side, insert the needle from the right side into it and knit it: normally you insert the needle from the left side of the stitch, but this one, because of how it is mounted, you work from the right side.


Ok thank you, I will have a go…maybe it’ll just get better with practice…my first sock… so practice makes perfect as they say ! Thanks again


I really like toe-up socks with gusset and Fleegle heel. NO HOLES!!

You can learn all about them at She even has a pic of baby socks I made on her site! I’m by no means an expert sock knitter. I replied to an email in a knit-along, included the picture, and she asked if she could use it. For the (newborn) baby socks, I used her adult bulky pattern with sport weight yarn and #3 needles. I like the Turkish cast on and I substitute yarn over for make one (then knit through the back loop of the YO on the next round). This is how I make all my socks now. I have a high instep and the gusset helps a lot with that.


I also use Fleegle for most of my sock projects. Sometimes I make other heels just because it is nice with some variation, but Fleegle is my go-to heel and I highly recommend it. Like you I also use Turkish cast on for beginning the toe.


Best of luck! I never mastered no holes with cuff down. I was always closing them up with tapestry needle and yarn scraps.

I also like the Fleegle. I’ve tried afterthought, fish,kiss one, sweet tomatoe heel, boomerang heel and probably several others, but still prefer the Fleegle.

Who knew there were so many heel types!


Well, now that you’ve done one pair (congrats they are super) I predict you will be addicted, like the rest of us,

I like to make socks from cuff down. So I don’t know if what I learned is helpful. When you pick up stitches on the heal flap, the stitches that are next to cuff, instead of picking up stitches in the normal place, pick the stitch up one stitch below. I have made several pairs of socks, no holes.

I had a similar look the first time I tried German short rows. I think it could be just a tension problem. The first and last stitches of the heel tend to get pulled on a bit just through the mechanics of temporarily knitting back and forth on the heel stitches. This makes them a bit looser than the others. If you get a spare needle, you can carefully pull on the loose loops and redistribute the slack into the non-heel stitches until it is not noticeable.

As I knitted short-row heels more, my tension got better.

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Im always amazed to see new terms, such as Fleegle. After searching & eliminating non-helpful definitions. I get to the proper or agreed upon definition, or video. And it turns out to be a common ordinary technique we older gals have used for decades but had no name for. Back in the day we all used short rows but executed them a bit differently from person to person. No one ever thought to label & claim her way. We just all decided upon the one we liked best for that particular application and went with it. I’ve done toe up socks forever with short row heel. Sometimes what you ppl call wrapped & sometimes what you call german. I didn’t call them anything different tho.

I always knit socks toe up to the bottom of the rib. Then started the rib at the top & knitted down to the point where my bottom-up part stopped. Make 1 row to change the rib into stockinette with appropriate increases or decreases. Then I kitchenered (we did have that term) them together. Because I didn’t like my rib cast offs which would have been at the top of the sock. I make a stretchy cast on for the rib. I suppose I should name my technique. But I wont. It came to me as a suggestion from a fellow group member when I was lamenting my ugly rib cast offs at a meeting. She didn’t do her socks that way, but dreamed it up on the spot. That is how we all shared techniques back then. It was “hey yours look tidier than mine”. And the one who was being admired shared it. No names.

There is nothing wrong with micromanaging names for the tiniest little changes I suppose. But it is unnecessary extra work for those of us who had done it with no name for it for decades already.

I did eventually figure out a tidier rib cast off. But by then I was machine knitting the bottom part & since flat bed machine ribs must be made flat with a seam, I often hand knit the rib part & still use my method.

Old lady gripe over.


Ah, youth. They forget that knitting has been around long before the printing press or the Internet. Just because they can’t find it on the Net, they think it is new and needs a name…

Or did Fleegle named their whole pattern eponymously in 2007 post?


I like to think of naming techniques as a form of shorthand (I wouldn’t call myself a youth exactly, though I certainly was when I first started knitting!). If I’ve memorised the instructions I prefer to have a name to use in my mental filing system XD


When most people hear short rows heels they think of a symmetric heel done by first doing shorter and shorter rows and then longer and longer rows while hiding the gaps at the turning points with a short row technique (W&T, German, etc). Fleegle heel is what you could call a simplified heel flap heel rather than that kind of short rows heel:

A heel flap heel you make as:

  1. Knit a flap
  2. Turn the heel (which will eat away some of the stitches)
  3. Pick up stitches from the sides of the flap (they compensate the lost stitches in previous step) and do decreases on both side (gusset)

A Fleegle heel is made as:

  1. Make increases on both side (= making gussets) while still working in the rounds
  2. Turn the heel. This is done in the same way as if you had made a heel flap. This will eat away the stitches you added when you made the gussets.

Of course a heel turn (as in a heel flap turn) is also kind of short rows, but most people just say they are “turning the heel” rather than doing short rows.

Personally I find it useful to have established names on different heel types because it makes it so much easier talk about them. I agree that the principle behind Fleegle heel is so simple that probably many have invented it over and over and it probably has been used by many without having a name.