Sock-Blocking Rib?

Ok, sooo I’m wanting to knit a pair of socks for my sis-in-law for christmas. It is mostly k2p2 rib, except for heel, toes and bottom of foot. I’m bad about not wanting to do swatches, but really want to become a better knitter.

Soooo, I’m knitting a swatch in the round, 4 rows garter, significant number of rows k2p2, then 4 rows garter. How do I block this thing?? Do I block the rib part to be even with the garter part, cause it really cinches in to where you almost don’t see the purls. Do I not even block it? I really want to get an accurate guage. Does the fact that its knit in the round come into factor when I block it?

Lots of questions I know, thanks in advance for your sock-blocking ideas :happydance:

Does the pattern use garter st? If not, I wouldn’t put it in the swatch because that may change the measurement. For blocking socks, I think you just wet them and lay flat to dry, you don’t pin out to any measurement.

Thanks for the quick reply!

Actually the pattern does not call for garter. I was going off of the knitty article here. The part I’m looking at in the article is about halfway down and starts by saying “Now you’re asking”.

I’m knitting the swatch pretty long, 40 rows as per the article and so I think the measurements in the middle should be pretty on target. I’m mostly concerned in how the main body of the swatch you can barely see the purls. Would it be an accurate guage test without pinning it out some?

Does the pattern ask for a blocked gauge? If not, don’t block before measuring. And do they tell you what stitch your checking gauge in?

I usually don’t block socks for me, but if gifting them it does add a nice finished look. You can make you own blockers - see this pictorial. Make sure not to overblock your ribbing - it’s supposed to be somewhat smooshed together. If you do block, you just kind of even things out, don’t stretch it a lot.

The pattern is based on the “On-Your-Toes Socks” pattern from summer 07 Interweave Knits Magazine.

On pg 28 it has a toe-up sock guide that you can use to substitute numbers into the pattern based on your gauge in sts per inch. So you can use a heavier yarn or fingering weight yarn. But the guide doesn’t say anything at all about blocking for gauge. So I’m clueless, hehe.

I’m using KnitPicks Essential which is fingering weight, but I’m using size 3 dpns. So my gauge is going to be different from what they have in the pattern. This is really my first time swatching, so I did a search and found the above knitty article, so I am basing my swatch on their suggestions.

So from both of your suggestions, I should just lay it to dry, not blocking and then measure from there. I just want to make the perfect gift hehe, and it sounds like I’m making it more difficult than it needs to be.

Thanks for your replies! It has helped alot.

I’m sure you want it to be nice looking as it’s a gift. But yep, just pat it out to dry flat; ribs are supposed to be stretchy, but you don’t want to stretch them out or it will be too loose.

Gauge stitches for those socks is at the lower left corner of p 30 - 14 st and 21 rows = 2" in [B]St st[/B] worked in the round.

I think the yarn called for is somewhat thinner than KP Essentials, but if you follow the table on p 28 you can go by the gauge you get in St st.