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Just Checking In Socks

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Want to make a pair of socks that look tricky, but are actually really simple? The Just Checking In Socks use a simple method involving a little bit of surface crochet or chain-stitch embroidery that requires minimal effort for maximum effect. Hate sewing and crochet? I’ve also included instructions on how to add the stripes using a simple intarsia technique.

The pattern is written for seven sizes, with finished circumferences ranging from 13 cm (5.25 in) to 28 cm (11.25 in). The socks should be worn with approximately 2.5 cm (1 in) of negative ease.

The socks are knitted from the cuff down, starting with a 1 x 1 ribbed cuff. The horizontal stripes are created as the sock is knitted, with purl columns. Once you’ve finished knitting the sock, you use surface crochet or embroidery to add the vertical stripes. If you prefer, you can add the vertical stripes as you knit using basic intarsia.

The socks have a heel-flap and gusset construction, with a slipped stitch texture on the heel flap for reinforcement. The foot length of the socks is adjustable to fit, and the socks are finished with a Kitchener-free toe.

The pattern is written to be needle-neutral and can be knitted using either the magic-loop technique, short circulars or DPNs, depending on your individual preference. The pattern also features helpful hints for beginners.

A (B, C // D, E, F // G)

Finished sock circumferences: 13 (15.5, 18 // 20.5, 23, 25.5 // 28) cm [5.25 (6.25, 7.25 // 8.25, 9.25, 10.25 // 11.25)]; for the best fit, choose a size that is approximately 2.5 cm (1 in) smaller than your foot circumference.

Leg length to heel: 10 (12.5, 15 // 18, 20.5, 23 // 23) cm [4 (5, 6 // 7, 8, 9 // 9) in].

Foot length is adjustable.

32 sts and 44 rnds = 10 cm (4 in) in stocking stitch and worked in the rnd on 2.5 mm (US 1.5) needle(s) after wet blocking, or size needed to obtain correct tension.

4ply-weight sock yarn in the following colours and amounts (yardages are approximate as the amount of yarn used will depend on the length of the foot, which is adjustable):
  • MC: 90 (130, 175 // 210, 265, 335 // 385) m [100 (145, 195 // 230, 290, 370 // 425) yds]
  • CC: 75 (110, 145 // 175, 225, 280 // 325) m [85 (125, 160 // 195, 250, 310 // 360) yds]
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, 15 cm [6 in], set of 5, or
  • 2.5 mm (US 1.5) circular needle, at least 80 cm [32 in] in length to work magic loop, or
  • 2.5 mm (US 1.5) circular needle, 22.5 cm [9 in] in length


  • Stitch markers x 7
  • 2.5 mm crochet hook (needed only if you are crocheting the vertical lines)
  • Tapestry needle
Pattern notes
The instructions are for the smallest size, with larger sizes in parentheses: A (B, C // D, E, F // G). If only one number is given, it applies to all sizes.

Sample details are as follows:
  • Pale blue socks: CoopKnits Socks Yeah (4-ply, 212 m per 50 g skein, 75% fine superwash merino wool, 25% nylon) in 119 Larimar (MC) and 111 Benitoit (CC). Knitted in size D.
  • Dark blue sock: CoopKnits Socks Yeah (4-ply, 212 m per 50 g skein, 75% fine superwash merino wool, 25% nylon) in 111 Benitoit (MC) and 119 Larimar (CC). Knitted in size A.
Think before you print! Photo tutorials are provided for each method of adding the vertical stripes. Only print what you need.

Pattern edited by Jo Torr.

A version of this pattern was first published in I Like Knitting magazine, August 2020. The I Like Knitting version does not include photo tutorials, and only includes the sewn and crochet options for the vertical stripes.
You will get a PDF (3MB) file