Sock Heels and Toes

I’m new to this site and have recently begun kntting again after a long lapse. I’ve been reading about reinforcing the heels and toes of socks with nylon thread. I’ve tried nylon upholstery thread but that doesn’t seem to be thick enough. Does anyone know what “reinforcing thread” (or yarn) is exactly? And where can I find it? Thanks!

Sometimes they sell the reinforcing thread in yarn stores-mine just got some in. Ann Budd, in the Knitters Handy Book of Patterns says regular old sewing thread.

I like using Lang “Jawoll” sock yarn, which comes with a matching spool of yarn for reinforcing. I think that company also sells separate spools of reinforcing yarn as well.


thanks so much! You guys are PROMPT!!!

Thanks! I’ll look for that yarn!

I’ve used “Wooly Nylon” (available at most fabric stores) to reinforce sock heels and toes. I’m pretty hard on the toes (I have “sockiverous” toes), but I actually find that if I use a wool/synthetic blend yarn I do not need to reinforce.

Thanks! Someone also suggested buttonhole silk twist.
I’m currently making socks with 75% orlon, 25% wool, so I’m going to try these suggestions on my next wool pair.

I was wondering the same thing about what to use for reinforcement. I have poly/cotton sewing thread but I just don’t think that would be much help. I also have some beautiful rayon machine embroidery thread (in many beautiful colors) that I’ve been thinking I could use. Do you think the rayon thread would work?

I don’t know what rayon machine embroidery thread is, so am not sure if it would work. Does it have some cushiness or loft to it like Wooly Nylon? Or is it very smooth and slick? One thing to try: take a short length of your yarn between the fingers of one hand and kind of saw at it with the thread you’re considering using for reinforcement (kind of like playing a violin). If the yarn does not abrade or weaken, I think you could use it.

You might want to wait till someone else chimes in here…I’ve got lots of sock and yarn experience but zero rayon thread experience!

I think anything will work. I sometimes add a second strand of wool (usually slightly thinner wool). In solid colour socks in a thick wool, adding a second variegated strand and an eye of partridge heel looks good.

Thanks for the info. I’ll try the sawing technique and see what happens. The thread is not poofy or anything. It’s smooth and shiny. I’m thinking it will be a little stronger than the regular sewing thread I have.

I don’t have much wool on hand to experiment with. I’ve just taken up knitting again and most of what I have is acrylic used for baby items that I know will be put in the washer and dryer with no regard to fiber content. But anyway. I’ll see what happens. :slight_smile:

Since most of my socks are worn without shoes, just around the house, I’ve used 2 strands at the heels and toes. That seems to work great, but probably wouldn’t work too well with shoes.

I’m thinking that the socks made for me will be worn around the house with my crocs if anything, so that would probably work for me, too. Now, anything made for my girls might be a different story.

Thanks, Very interesting thread. I have been wondering about this subject myself. I was going to just reinforce the complete sole of the sock. I was going to use 2 strands of my sock yarn. Now I’m not so sure. It might be to thick.