Please have mercy on this sock knitter and read!

So, I spent the weekend knitting the beautiful Chevron Lace pattern for a sock. Gorgeous. Hurrah, the hard part is over, I think. UGH! Please look at the pattern if you don’t already know it.

I ran into trouble.

Advancing to the heel flap:

a) She says to place the stitches from needles 4 and 1 onto one needle. I assumed she meant me to knit the stitches from 1 onto the #4 needle, since to place them would mean the working yarn would be in the middle of the needle. Do you think that’s right?

b) If you work the heel flap, as she says, starting with a P row and going for a total of 16 rows, you will end with a K row. She says to begin turning the heel with a right side row. Do I just do another P row to get to a right side, or am I supposed to be knitting on wrong side, here?

c) I did the gusset so the decreases would make sense, with the SSK being at 3 from the END of needle 1 and the K2TOG near the beginning of needle 4, keeping in mind the slant of the stitches. This meant I was working the sock BACKWARD and instead of a lovely, smooth stockinette I was rewarded with a lumpy inside-out looking reverse stockinette.

I’ve been knitting since May, and I’m no expert, but I’ve done a number of socks and this has me flummoxed. Is there a basic rule about how to turn a heel — some magical mathematical formula so I can make a Frankenstein sock (their leg, my foot) no matter how many stitches I’m working with on the heel flap?

In despair I ripped the sock all the way back and am starting anew. I didn’t cry, which is a sign of my slow maturation, but I did complain to my husband about it in bed for about 15 minutes at 1 in the morning. The children are walking about in a proper state of mourning.

Thank you for any help/advice you can offer!


a) I think that’s right. You just want to end up with half the total stitches on one needle for the heel. If you have to knit them on to get the yarn in the right place, no big deal.

b)If she says start on the right side, start on the right side. Don’t worry too much about whether the actual rows needed being 16 or 17…probably just a misprint…all the socks I’ve done start the heel shaping on the right side.

c) After picking up the stitches, you should be knitting in the round again stockinette. Sounds like you maybe picked them up in reverse order. Check this out for help:

Sorry you had to rip it all out!

EDIT: Oh, and there use to be a good sock formula on called Percentage-based, Toe-up, Garter Stitch, Short-row heel, Gauge-less Socks by Stasia but the link is broken! Might be worth posting there to Stasia to see if she’ll send it to you.

Thanks, that helps!

To get to the right place to shape the gusset after turning the heel, could I work another row even to get my yarn on the other end of the needle, or would that funk things up?

Thanks again?

Look towards the bottom of this page…

Notice how she says to end on a knit row? That should get you facing the right direction to pick up stitches. If you have to purl to the other side to get going in the right direction though, I wouldn’t worry too much about it…I think whether you end up on a knit or purl row probably depends on how many stitches you’re working in the short row. As long as you can then pick up the stiches and then end up so you can do your circular stockinette, you’ll be fine.

Thank you, Kemp! Please forgive me for not thanking you sooner – for some reason I couldn’t get the computer to post a reply. I guess I’ll trust my instincts a bit more and see how it turns out – couldn’t turn out worse than when I followed blindly/incorrectly!

Thank you again for your time.