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Sensational Knitted Socks

by Charlene Schurch

Rating:  5 sheep (excellent)

 

This book lives up to its title. It is chockfull of information and should satisfy all levels of sock knitters from beginner to sockmeister.

 

Her section on sock yarn not only discusses reinforcement yarn, yarn care symbols, yarn weight/suggested gauge/yardage amount but also the quality of wool and which varieties of wool producing sheep are best for spinning your own sock yarn!

 

Sock basics include the sock anatomy for top-down sock with heel flap, toe-up sock with heel flap and top-down sock with short-row heel. A photo of each version was knit in different colors for the toe, heel-flap, heel turn, gusset, etc. to make it easy to identify the structure & understand the “sock lingo”. This chapter also covers knitting needles, gauge swatch & foot measurements/sizes. The great size charts for women, men & children giving foot circumference & sock length are based on shoe size (that alone is probably worth half the price of the book!). Advice for making your socks durable and adjusting for “not your average” feet are included here.

 

Ms. Schurch provides options galore – all the patterns (except cable patterns) include instructions using four double-points, five double-points or two circular needles.

 

Troubleshooting gives tips to avoid “ears” on heel turn & avoiding holes at top of gusset plus helps you understand how to use and adjust stitch pattern charts.

 

A mini-class sock helps beginners get comfortable with technique before embarking on a full-size version.

 

The rest of the book provides a multitude of patterns to launch your sock-knitting obsession. She's grouped 4, 5, 6, 8, 12 stitch patterns, cabled patterns, chevron patterns for self-striping yarns, fair-isle, 4 stitch reticulated patterns (allover “netlike”) and mosaics. Each is ranked easy, intermediate or experienced. The groupings have stitch dictionaries with charts and written patterns. Stitch tables in each section give you the number stitches to cast-on in gauges from about 5-10 stitches per inch and foot circumference of 5-12”! Step by step instructions spell it out for you. Short-row toe, star toe (my fave) short-row heel, in-place afterthought or forethought heel, round-toe, short-row toe, easy toe and standard toe (grafted).

 

This opens up unlimited variations for you to play with while still having guidance on how to accomplish this feat for your feet – an amazing pair of socks! She helps you understand how to adjust a pattern for a variety of sizes and gauges so you're not stuck following a pattern for a “medium woman's sock” in “x” brand yarn.

 

It is a combination sock-size guide, stitch dictionary, and sock formula all in one. Well-organized, thorough and worth the price. If you only could own one sock book, this would be an excellent choice. I highly recommend it!

 

Respectfully submitted,

Candy Grastorf

Buy this book from Amazon.com

Publisher's Corrections to Sensational Knitted Socks

 

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