The completed socks - check out how nicely the striping worked out!

Toe-Up Socks with a Drop-In Heel


Project Log: Supporter’s Socks

The completed socks – check out how nicely the striping worked out!

I’ve been continuing to knit socks since I completed my first pair and I get better at it all the time. I find socks are a great project for summer because they don’t heat you up. And they are wonderfully portable. Plus, everyone loves socks! You can even make them for the hard-to-knit-for people in your life!

So with that in mind, I decided to make a pair for my brother. He is all about brightly colored socks, so I got to work with some great, colorful yarn. The last thing I made for him was a crocheted sweater. It was at least 20 years ago, and the sleeves are 2 different lengths. He’s a sport, though – he still has it! Even though he never really wears sweaters. But because of that project, I decided that the most important thing about THESE socks is that they had to be the same length!

I made these socks from the toe-up. I’ve worked both kinds of socks, now and I like the toe-up for several reasons:

  1. You can try them on as you go.
  2. You can use up all your yarn if you wish (that’s hard to do with cuff-down socks).
  3. All the hard parts are closer to the beginning. By the time you get to the cuff, you can just cruise.

Pattern: Supporter’s Sock by Linda Parkhurst (free pattern on I really just used this pattern for the cuff/ribbing. It’s great for striped yarn and makes a really stretchy sock. Basically, whenever the color started to change in my yarn, I knit one row. Then, on the next row, I reversed the ribbing. So, if I started with k2, p2 then, after the knit row, I would do p2, k2. At the end of the cuff, I did an inch or so of 1×1 ribbing, and then I cast off with the tubular cast off (its the Kitchener stitch). I LOVED the result! Stretchy and very attractive!

Heel Pattern: Drop-in or afterthought heel. Instructions are here.

Toe Pattern: Judy’s Magic Cast On for Toe-Up Socks (video). Its super easy to do and looks fantastic!

Yarn: Knit Picks Felici Fingering Self Striping Sock Yarn in the Fizz colorway. I think it looks like Starburst candy. And it’s super soft and wonderful to work with.

Needle: Size 0 circular

Lessons Learned:

  • The afterthought heel is a great way to go whenever you are doing striped socks because it keeps the stripes looking great. Without this heel, you usually have a place at the front of the sock where the stripes are not right because of all the yarn you used for the heel. The instructions for this are here.
  • I love using circular needles to make socks (the magic loop method). It is so much easier than DPNs!
  • When you are doing an afterthought heel, be sure to make the cuff about 2 inches longer than you think it should be. Something about this method shortens your cuff. I thought they were the perfect length, but I finished them and and I wished the socks were a bit longer.

2 comments on “Toe-Up Socks with a Drop-In Heel

  1. As the hard-to-knit-for brother mentioned here, I have to say that I love the socks. I do wish the cuffs were a bit longer, but they fit well, are very comfortable.

    And, unlike the sweater, they are of matching length, very well done indeed.

    I love you, Sta.

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