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Archive entry for March 2015

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March 2015

Guernsey Socks


One of my earliest POMs was for a "flag dishcloth" as I really like this traditional Guernsey pattern. These are 5ply socks which reflect this design on the upper part of the sock - the feet are knitted plain. This is a nice wool weight if you want a slightly thicker sock, and no need to be limited to navy or cream (nice though that is), as 5ply is generally available in a good range of colours.
It can also be a good way to use up left over 5 ply, especially if you bought the wool for a guernsey in large cones.

Instructions (work 2 alike).

Using No 11 needles, cast on 102sts.
Place 34sts on each of 3 needles and join in the round.
Place a stitch marker to show where the rounds start and finish.

First Round: * K2tog, k1, p2tog, p1. Repeat from * to end. [68 sts]

[Editor's note: Casting on 2 or 3 times the required stitches and then immediately decreasing on the first row provides a method of making sure you have a nice loose cast-on for the top of the sock. Otherwise chaps have a habit of yanking on their socks and right away breaking the first row of stitches, (ask me how I know...).]

Work 2 rounds in k2, p2 rib, then change to No 12 needles and work 8 more rounds in rib.

Next Round: Knit.
Next Round: Purl.
Next Round: Purl.

Change to No 11 needles and knit 1 round.

Flag Pattern

This pattern is worked down the leg as far as the ankle.

1st Round: * (p1, k1) 3 times; p2, k9; repeat from * to end.
2nd Round: * p3, k1, p5, k8, repeat from * to end.
3rd Round: * (p1, k1) 3 times; p4, k7; repeat from * to end.
4th Round: * p3, k1, p7, k6, repeat from * to end.
5th Round: * (p1, k1) 3 times; p6, k5; repeat from * to end.
6th Round: * p3, k1, p9, k4, repeat from * to end.
7th Round: * (p1, k1) 3 times; p8, k3; repeat from * to end.
8th Round: * p3, k1, p11, k2, repeat from * to end.
9th Round: * (p1, k1) 3 times; p10, k1; repeat from * to end.
10th Round: * p3, k1, p13 repeat from * to end.

Repeat these 10 pattern rows 3 more times.
[Editor's note: You can, of course, repeat the 10 rows more times for a longer sock, but bear in mind you will need extra wool.]

Next Round: Knit.
Next Round (decrease): (p5, p2tog) to last 5 sts, p5. [59 sts]
Next Round (decrease): (k2tog, k18) twice; k2tog, k17. [56 sts].

Knit 3 rounds.

Divide for heel

Next Row: K14; turn.
1st Row: Slip 1; p27; turn.

Divide the remaining stitches on to two needles and leave to pick up later for the instep.

2nd Row: Slip 1; k27.
3rd Row: Slip 1; p27.

Repeat 2nd and 3rd rows, 12 times more.

Turn Heel

Next Row: K18, slip 1, k1, psso (pass the slipped stitch over), turn.

Next Row: P9, p2tog, turn.
Next Row: K9, slip 1, k1, psso, turn.

Repeat the last 2 rows until all stitches are taken up and 10 sts remain, and (right side of work facing) knit across the 10 sts, then, pick up and knit 14 sts along side of heel.
Slip all instep sts on to one needle, and using 2nd needle knit across instep sts.
Using 3rd needle, pick up and knit 14 sts along side of heel, then knit 5 heel sts from the first needle, slipping them on the end of the 3rd needle to complete the round. [66 sts].

Shape instep:

Knit one round on all stitches.

Next round: 1st needle: knit to the last 3sts, k2tog, k1.
2nd needle: Knit. 3rd needle: K1, slip1, k1, psso knit to end.
Next round: Knit.

Repeat these two rounds until 56 stitches remain.

Continue on these stitches until work measures 5½(6, 6½) inches, or desired length for foot.

Shape Toe:

1st round: 1st needle: knit to the last 3sts, k2tog, k1.
2nd needle: K1, slip1, k1, psso knit to the last 3sts, k2tog, k1.
3rd needle: K1, slip1, k1, psso knit to end.

2nd round: Knit.
3rd round: Knit.

Repeat these 3 rounds until 28 sts remain.

Making Up

Knit stitches from 1st needle on to end of 3rd needle.
Graft or cast off the two sets of 14 sts together.


2 x 50g balls British Breeds Guersey 5ply

One set of 4 number 12 (2¾mm) needles, (or 2½mm if necessary), and,
one set of 4 number 11 (3mm) needles.

A stitch marker.


26sts and 32 rows to four inches on No 11 (3mm) needles.

Size matters

To fit men's shoe sizes: 10 (10½, 11).


k2tog/p2tog: knit/purl 2 sts together.

SL 1: slip 1 stitch

SL 1, k1, psso: slip 1, knit 1, pass the slipped stitch over; also known as "ssk" (slip, slip, knit).


In transposing any patterns it is always a risk that errors will be introduced, in spite of dedicated proof reading.
If you have any problems with this pattern, please and I will try and assist.


© Christina Coutts 2007

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