Do-It-Yourself Design: The Sole Solution Software
In the Beginning
Because of their logical, mathematical makeup, socks lend themselves perfectly to computer-aided design.
Early programs offered clunky interfaces and limited options, spitting out a series of numbers you had to put together yourself. Today, however, the software is much improved.
The Sole Solution
What You Get
What You Can Do
You can determine whether you want to knit a sock from the toe up or the top down. You're given several heel styles, widths, and stitches. Ditto for the toe styles and widths.
And, perhaps most interesting of all, the program produces patterns for socks knit on four DPNs, five DPNs, and even two circular needles!
If you want to use a specific stitch pattern, you can add this too. The program won't chart it out for you, but it will let you know when it's time to begin your pattern and when to stop. If you like form-fitting socks, you can even program specific leg shapings too.
More important than an attractive layout, however, is the pattern itself. You'll find thorough, well-written instructions that make it hard to believe you're reading a computer-generated pattern. If you get confused at any point, simply press F1 and a Help window pops up.
Even if you don't need help, I strongly urge you to explore the Help section anyway. It includes a vast appendix with well-illustrated explanations of everything from Kitchener stitch to knitting socks on two circular needles.
You can save your patterns in Word ".doc" format, plain text format (".txt"), and rich-text format (".rtf") for later reference.
Not Your Mother's Software
If you consider the number of options this software offers, combined with the in-depth help files, $29.95 seems quite reasonable. Unlike that exercycle that long ago became a clothes rack in your bedroom, the Sole Solution stands a good chance of being useful for a long, long time.
The Sole Solution
Runs on PCs using Windows 95 or later and on Macs running Virtual PC.
$29.95 plus $4.50 Priority Mail shipping in the U.S. (Contact vendor for shipping outside the U.S.) Alabama buyers add 8% sales tax.
Buy It Online
To visit Moran Software's special welcome page for Knitter's Review readers and to learn more about The Sole Solution (including online ordering), click here.