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 How To Measure Foot With A Tape Measure For Socks
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Warming Up

98 Posts

Posted - 09/12/2009 :  12:37:47 PM  Show Profile  Visit Fantasy0101's Homepage Send Fantasy0101 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
[font=Book Antiqua]I need to know, it's been awhile how to measure a foot for socks. I measured the circumference of my adult daughter's ankle and it was a size 11.5" and measured the circumference of around her foot at the ball and it was 10.5". I thought the circumference of the ankle and the circumference of at ball of the foot were suppose to be the same size. Am I wrong? Could someone refresh my memory on how to measure the foot with a tape measure for socks.

What's on the needle: I am teaching my brilliant daughter how to knit socks. She picked up how to do the Twisted German Cast On in a blink of a She learns quick! And she really surprised me. There is knitters on both sides of I and my hubby's families. She is practice knitting a sock just to get the feel of it before she buys yarn. She is doing really well with this practice! We are looking for wool/polyester and maybe elastic that takes a size 3 dpns. If you can give some ideas on cheap yarn with this description we would appreciate it. We don't want rayon, aloe added, or other materials added. I had usually knit socks with Lion Brand Wool Ease Sports, but can't find that. Would Lion Brand Wool Ease be the same? Do they still sale Lion Brand Wool Ease? We are having a hard time finding what we want in solid colors.

So. Cal[/font=Book Antiqua

Seriously Hooked

993 Posts

Posted - 09/12/2009 :  7:53:16 PM  Show Profile Send lacylaine a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Wool Ease works up well on size 5 needles,but they don't seem to last as long as "real" sock yarn does. You definitely need that nylon in the yarn, especially if someone wears their socks on carpets, like my family does.

The ankle and the circumference of the foot usually are the same size but not always. How fun that your daughter is learning to knit! I hope she keeps up with it.


"Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might." Ecclesiastes 9:10

FO 2009: small market/shower bag; gray watch cap; magic square potholder; five dish cloths, including two new patterns; Hedgerow Mitts!

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Seriously Hooked

688 Posts

Posted - 09/13/2009 :  06:38:43 AM  Show Profile Send knitree a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Just hazarding a guess here, but would sock yarn held double do the trick?

And, I just measured my ankle-to-ball and they are .5" off... learn something new everyday!

Taking simple patterns and complicating them...
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Chatty Knitter

258 Posts

Posted - 09/13/2009 :  08:09:12 AM  Show Profile Send socker a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Most sock patterns assume the ball of the foot and the ankle will be about the same measurement. For many people they are, for me, my ankle is about an inch larger than the ball of the foot. This causes a couple of problems with socks. For me, short row heels are out. There just isn't enough fabric around the ankle to fit. I also have very, very narrow heels, so, the standard flap doens't fit well either. So, I have to go with a gussetted short row. Your daughter may have the same problem. Another trick I sometimes do, is adjust the number of stitches when I come out of the heels. Either increase the number to the next # of repeats if I've knit toe up, or,for cuf down, drecrease the number I want.

As far as the yarn. I like to hold 2 sock yarns together if I want a heavier sock, or to use larger needles. Other than that, Plymouth Encore DK knits about that size and feels a lot like woolease.
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Seriously Hooked

869 Posts

Posted - 09/19/2009 :  5:50:22 PM  Show Profile  Visit Suzann's Homepage Send Suzann a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Just a hint. Before you start the heel, put in a lifeline. If the heel isn't what you want it is easy to rip back, without having to pick up all those little stitches.
Sock patterns tend to give the average measurement. The great thing is we can measure and adjust to fit our feet perfectly. If you are going top down and doing a gusset heel. You really want to measure for that. Measure from the ankle bone to the floor. That is how large your gusset should be, before you turn the heel. If the gusset isn't large enough the sock will pull under the foot.
I would skip the Wool Ease. It isn't worthy of all your knitting. You can get a big ball of Cascade 220 for not much more then Wool Ease. Or try doubling up on sock yarn. Check out or for inexpensive yarns. Much more worthy of your work. Machine washable too.
Good luck


Making cables is like making love. There is a lot of foreplay before you get to the deed

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Permanent Resident

1929 Posts

Posted - 10/14/2009 :  6:38:48 PM  Show Profile  Visit Ceil's Homepage Send Ceil a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The only measurements I use are around the ball of the foot, and from the end of the big toe to the center of the ankle bone. No measuring of the ankle, unless the leg has a lot of unusual girth.

Wool-Ease: size 5 needles? Heavens! This yarn looks like it needs size >2<! We had a discussion about gauges here some time ago, and someone said that most gauges on sock-yarn labels are for >sweaters<! So, ignore the label, knit a swatch until you find a close-knit fabric suitable for socks. Whatever the fiber content, a sock can't hold up to wear if the fabric is really open. HTH,


Time is never a factor when joy is involved.
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