Little Pine Cone Socks
Little Pine Cone Socks
By Vikki Bird
Toe-up socks with a lace motif
Autumn conjures up all sorts of things in my mind: back to school, collecting conkers, finally be able to wear my handknitted socks again, the rich colours of the autumn leaves on the trees, and crunching through the leaves once they have fallen. My Little Pine Cone Socks are inspired by all of those things, and feature a lace pattern that reminds me of the pine cones that litter a forest floor. The samples are knitted in gorgeous autumn shades to evoke a walk in the woods just as the leaves are falling.
The Little Pine Cone Socks are knitted from the toe up and I’ve included two options for knitting the heel: A gusset and heel flap construction, shaped with short rows, and with a slipped-stitch pattern on the heel flap for reinforcement. The gusset length is affected by your row/round gauge, so a table of gauge-dependent lengths is included to help you achieve the perfect fit; A German Short Row Heel.
Instructions for the Little Pine Cone pattern are given in both chart and written formats. The lace pattern is knitted into the top of the foot and the front of the leg. The back of the leg is knitted in plain stocking stitch.
The pattern is needle-neutral, and the socks can be knitted using DPNs, short circulars, or long circulars using the magic loop technique.
A (B, C // D, E, F // G, H)
Finished sock foot circumferences: 11 (13.5, 16 // 18, 20.5, 23 // 25.5, 27.5) cm [4.5 (5.5, 6.25 // 7.25, 8.25, 9.25 // 10, 11) in] designed to fit with 2.5 cm (1 in) negative ease. These are the sizes of the finished socks; for the best fit, choose a size that is approximately 2.5 cm (1 in) smaller than your foot circumference.
Prefer to choose a size by stitch count? Sizes A (B, C // D, E, F // G, H) correspond to stitch counts of 38 (46, 54 // 62, 70, 78 // 86, 94) sts.
34 sts x 48 rnds = 10 cm (4 in) in stocking stitch in the rnd on 2.5 mm (US 1.5) needles, or size needed to obtain correct gauge.
Notes are included to adapt the pattern to your rnd gauge.
100 (150, 210 // 260, 330, 410 // 490, 590) m [110 (170, 230 // 290, 370, 450 // 540, 650) yds] of 4-ply sock yarn.
Note that these numbers are for guidance only as the lengths of both the legs and the feet are variable to fit. The short row heel version will use less yarn than the heel flap and gusset version. See pattern notes for further guidance on yarn choice.
I would recommend using a dedicated sock yarn that is tightly plied wool and has some nylon content for durability.
2.5 mm (US 1.5) DPNs; or a 2.5 mm (US 1.5) circular needle at least 80 cm (32 in) in length; or a 2.5 mm (US 1.5) 20 cm (9 in) circular needle
Stitch markers x 6; Tapestry needle
The instructions are for the smallest size, with larger sizes in parentheses: A (B, C // D, E, F // G, H).
If you have a limited quantity of yarn and you want to ensure you do not run out of yarn for the second sock, first wind the yarn into two balls of equal mass, and stop knitting your first sock when your first ball is about to run out.
Orange socks: Needle and Fred 4-ply fingering [4 ply; 425 m (464 yds) per 100 g skein; 75% Blue Faced Leicester, 25% nylon] in the colourway Marma-Lady and size E for a UK women’s size 7 foot [foot length 25 cm (9.75 in)]. The sample socks used 298 m (326 yds) of yarn and have a heel flap and gusset. Yarn support was provided by Needle and Fred; you can find all their yarns on their website: https://needleandfred.shop/
Brown socks: West Yorkshire Spinners Signature 4-ply [4 ply; 400 m (425 yds) per 100 g ball; 75% wool, 25% nylon] in the colourway 630 Nutmeg and size E for a UK women’s size 10 foot [foot length 27.5 cm (10.75 in)]. The sample socks used 324 m (354 yds) of yarn and have a German Short Row heel.
I have included instructions for both a heel flap and gusset and a German Short Row heel. It is totally up to you which you choose to do, but if you have a high instep, a heel flap and gusset provides a better fit as there is more space in the heel.
A version of this pattern was included in Knit Now magazine, issue 120.
This pattern was tech edited by Jo Torr.