Resizing Socks: Tips & Tricks for Adjusting Stitch Counts

Are you a sock knitter dying to learn how to design your own knitted socks? If your answer is “Yes!”, these sock design tutorials are the one-stop resource for you. Today’s topic is resizing socks by adjusting stitch counts to make your socks fit smaller or larger feet as provided by the pattern in question.

Sock Knitting for Everybody: Table of Contents

Resizing Socks: Lace and Cable Patterns

If you knit socks in lace or cabled patterns, standard stitch counts (as for Vanilla socks) might be not suitable:

  • Lace patterns will yield a different (smaller) gauge as standard stockinette because they are stretchier.
  • The opposite is the case for cable and twisted stitch patterns: they tend to be tighter in gauge (being knitted at a larger gauge).
  • For ribbed patterns, the numbers also might have to be adjusted.

For cables, twisted stitches and ribbed patterns go up one or two sizes in needle size; for lace patterns, go down one size. An alternative is to adjust your stitch counts: more stitches for cabled, less for lace patterns.

Resizing Socks for Kids

Kids, especially babies and toddlers, have thicker legs when compared to adults. If using cabled or twisted stitch patterns, make sure to go up one size or two in circumference to ensure these wee feet and legs fit into their socks. Lacy or otherwise stretchy patterns usually require no adjustments in circumference.

Are You Resizing Sock Knitting Patterns?

Which way of resizing socks is your favorite? I’m curious to hear your story – please leave a comment below!

PS. The extended version of this series is available in book form and called Sock Knitting in Plain English – I’m sure you’ll like it!


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