Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Ribbed Heel Flap….

“Phew….” (stage direction) strikes hand across forehead in dramatic flourish to wipe sweat off brow…

What did I start yesterday with my blog? I haven’t got a clue, but I have struck a chord obviously with a number of people, and thank you all for your kind comments and corrections..

I have knitted hundreds of socks over the last few years, whilst travelling back and forth – all of the started from a very basic pattern which I had given me with some sock yarn when I very first started making them again after a 20 year gap.  

The original pattern was OK, but it was flawed in that it was quite difficult to knit and did not fit my feet, also the heels went very quickly, despite using specified sock yarn, so I developed a different type of flap – which I erroneously called Eye of Partridge yesterday. 

Some of you very kindly pointed out to me that the ribbed heel on the socks in the picture, was in fact NOT Eye of Partridge as per the JPEG on the blog, but something totally different.  Fine – happy with that – so what is it then?  a Cushioned Rib of some sort which I am sure I have not invented. 

But a number of people have asked me to give them details, I did in my ham-fisted short-hand way, and there has been a flurry of queries and questions to that. 

So….. thought best write it down and thought it would be quite simple to convey in a couple of lines of instruction – but obviously blinkin well not !!

It seems there are many people in the world who are not sock knitters, because they don’t understand the patterns.  I must admit I struggled…but not terribly sure that my long-hand written method is any the easier. 

So…. thought might as well give the software a bit of whirl and here for your consideration is the charted version of my heel.  I will have another go at my sock pattern with pictures when I am next knitting one, so hope this helps in the meantime. 

My Methodology

Using you usual sock knitting method (mine is Cast On 60 using 2.5mm four dpn and knit patterns in the round to required length)

Knit 30 stitches onto one of your needles, and put the other on a spare short flexible needle to hold at the back of the work.

Follow the chart (below) knitting backwards and forwards now, not in the round, until Row 30 and you will find that it sets you up to shape the top of the heal which goes something like this:

Row 31: s1 p16 p2tog p1 turn
Row 32: s1 k5 ssk2tog k1 turn
Row 33: s1 p6 p2tog p1 turn
Row 34: s1 k7 ssk2tog k1 turn
Row 35: s1 p8 p2tog p1 turn
Row 36: s1 k9 ssk2tog k1 turn

This then sets you up using short rows continue decreasing one stitch in each row, increasing the distance between as above until you have 18 stitches on your needle.

This is then when you have to pick up the 15 stitches down the side of the flap to “turn” the heel.

You will find that there are now purl “bumps” down both sides of the flap, which act as a very neat ladder leaving guesswork to a minimum.  Pick up the 15 stitches, place a marker, then pick up five from the flexible needle at the back of your work.  Knit across the picked up stitches and then resume any pattern on the five stitches at the end of the row. 

Place 20 stitches from the flexible needle back on to your dpn, pattern across these, and then place your last five stitches on another dpn, place a marker and then pick up the 15 stitches which are on the opposite side of the flap to match the first one. 

You then need to continue knitting now again in the round.

You will now though need to decrease some of these stitches to get you back to your starting number and so you can knit the foot. 

Knit to three stitches before the marker, K2 tog K1 and proceed in pattern until the next marker, K1, K2tog through back of stitches, continue. 

The next round you knit without decreasing,

The next round decrease again.

At this point I place one of the stitches from each of the heel flaps onto the dpn needle carrying the heel stitches, and continue until I have:

1 Needle: 20 st
2 Needle: 10 st
3 Needle: 20 st
4 Needle:10 st

Then I distribute the stitches so that they are on three needles each of 20 st and continue with the foot (remembering to only pattern on the top, as underneath stockinette is more comfortable)

Oh and before anybody says anything, the white column in the middle is there because there is no stitch until you cast one on again in Row 30….


Much kudos to all you knitting pattern writers out there… I am off now to lie down in a darkened room for the rest of the day….


  1. Thank you so much for taking the time to write this up for me, I really had got in a pickle, but joining this up with the pattern, I think I get it know. Cheers Susie xxx

  2. Thank you so much for taking the time to write this up for me, I really had got in a pickle, but joining this up with the pattern, I think I get it know. Cheers Susie xxx


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