Tips for Practical Sock Knitting: 7 Sock Toes

All Good Socks Come to an End

Back in December, Lisa Shroyer wrote about 9 different sock heel types that she found in the pages of Weldon’s. This week, I’d like to introduce some closure . . . all good socks come to an end. If you’re knitting socks from the top down, that means shaping and closing up the toe.

7 sock toes illustration

Taking a look at the seven different toes in Weldon’s Practical Stocking Knitter, First & Second Series eBook, it strikes me how much they look like little beanies, all alone without their feet, heels, and legs. This leads me to wonder if knitters of the past were inspired by the shaping of knitted caps when designing handknit sock toes.

The seven sock toes above can roughly be divided into two camps. The first camp consists of sock toes where the shaping and decreases are done on either side of the foot “level with the gussets” leading to a flatter overall look. The Flat Toe and Wide Toe are two examples. The second camp contains sock toes that have the shaping dispersed around the foot which results in a rounder shaped toe. The Round Toe, Pointed Toe, French Toe, Star Toe of 4 Points, and Star Toe of 5 Points vary from short to long depth but look the most like knitted hat shaping if you ask me.

Gentleman’s Ribbed Stocking

Gentleman’s Ribbed Stocking from Weldon’s Practical Stocking Knitter, Third & Fourth Series eBook.

Rounded toes are one thing, but longer shaping that is spread out under the ball of the foot could get uncomfortable. The Pointed Toe is one toe I’d rather not scamper around town in for too long. Over time, I fear that I might feel the aligned “knit 1, pass the slipped stitch over” shaping decreases spiraling around my toes. The Pointed Toe may be better suited for bed socks. This may sound all too “Princess and the Pea” for some, but I have sensitive feet which are often cold—just ask my husband. The Gentleman’s Ribbed Stocking from Weldon’s Practical Stocking Knitter, Third & Fourth Series eBook with their Pointed Toe shaping would keep my feet toasty on a long winter’s night.

Have you tried any of these Weldon’s toes? We’d love to hear your toe-shaping experience and see a photo of your creation. Send them to piecework@interweave.com.

—Elizabeth


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