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Terrific Toe-Up Socks: Knit to Fit Paperback – January 18, 2011
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Janet Rehfeldt's Terrific Toe-Up Socks: Knit to Fit provides an outstanding set of stylish socks knitters will enjoy. Ten new designs cover lace, cables, ribbing and Fair Isle alike and provide illustrated instructions for three cast-on methods. Knitters who already have the basics down will relish this fine collection! --Midwest Book Review
Knitting socks from the toe up has become quite popular lately, with lots of books suddenly available on the subject. Working socks "from the bottom" is a good idea for a lot of reasons, but the most popular include that you can easily try on the sock as you knit for a perfectly custom fit and that if you divide your yarn right you can just keep knitting until you almost run out of yarn. Your leg will be as tall as it can be and you won't have to guess or worry about running out of yarn with two rounds left to go on the toe (it happens!).
Janet Rehfeldt shares the basics of knitting from the toe up as well as 10 patterns worked this way in Terrific Toe-Up Socks: Knit to Fit. The beginning of Terrific Toe-Up Socks runs knitters through the basics of knitting socks from the toe up, including different methods for casting on and a discussion of why she prefers the method she uses (a "closed toe" cast on using the long tail cast on and picking up stitches to make the other side of the toe--she likes it because it's tighter than the Turkish or wrap cast on).
She offers a variety of ways to increase from the toe to the number of stitches needed for the foot and has a nice, detailed section on ways to work the heel on a toe-up sock, which is probably the part that confuses people the most (much like on top-down socks).
There are also tips for preventing the all-too-common holes on the sides of the socks where the heel meets the leg, and a bunch of great options for loose bind offs that will make it possible to actually wear your socks. With all this information, knitters should feel confident choosing one of the 10 patterns in the book to experiment with.
One thing that's really cool about Terrific Toe-Up Socks is that it offers instructions for different sizes based on the circumference of the leg and the foot. Different patterns have slightly different sizes, but the smallest is 6.25 inches, which would fit an older child, and the largest is 11 inches, which would fit a largish man's foot or a woman with a very wide foot. My one complaint about the sizing is that the numbers are given with no real indication of who might fit that size; I guess that's because they're all supposed to be for women, just with narrow, regular, wide or extra-wide feet, but it seems like some would fit kids and men as well if you altered the length.
Though the number of patterns is small, there's a nice variety, from basic ribbed socks to easy lace, textured stitches and faux cables, even a little stranded knitting and beading. If you're new to toe-up sock knitting and want to get the basics without being overwhelmed by a huge book or hugely intricate patterns, Terrific Toe-Up Socks would make a nice starting point. None of the patterns are too horribly difficult that they can't be accomplished by someone with a little experience knitting socks, and the wide range of sizes available means you can make these for gifts or simply knit yourself a pair of custom-fit socks you're sure to love. --knitting.about.com
About the Author
Janet Rehfeldt has been knitting and crocheting since the age of seven. She is the owner of Knitted Threads Designs, LLC. As an instructor, designer, and author, she teaches on both a local and national level. Her work has been featured in magazines such as Cast On, Crochet Today!, and Crochet! as well as in several Martingale publications.
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Top Customer Reviews
The book is set up with a brief introduction, the anatomy of a sock, and some basic information describing needed tools. Next is a section of instructions for working each part of the sock: Cast-on, Toe and Foot, Working the Heels, Leg and Cuff, and Cast-off.
Following the instruction section are the 10 projects. As for skill levels, there are two easy, one experienced, and the rest intermediate. I would recommend the patterns in this book for a knitter that is at least an advanced beginner and not a new knitter. The cast-on method used in the "easy" patterns was very confusing to me and I have knitted socks before!
There is a nice variety of patterns that includes the basic sock, lacy, cable, colors, and even spa socks. This is a nice book for those who would like to try toe-up sock knitting.
Of the ten different sock patterns introduced in the book, I chose to start with the Easily Spectacular socks on page 40. I used Marasca sock yarn from Yarns of Italy ([...]) The instructions to start at the toe sounded a little foreign to me, but I cast on and knit exactly as she instructed, and had no problems.
I do think the fitting instructions (page 6) could have been a more detailed. For instance, the illustration shows two measurements of the circumference of the foot, but the written instructions only refer to "the circumference" as if there was only one measurement. It does not specify which of these measurements is referred to. I assumed it was the larger of the two.
On page 42 she instructs to stop knitting the foot when it measures 3 inches less than the total foot measurement. This seems to be a contradiction to the instructions on page 6, which say to work the sock foot portion until it's approx. 2" to 2 1/2" shorter than the length of your foot. I went by the instructions in the sock pattern and my socks ended up a little long for my foot. I will adjust this a little for my next pair, and gift these to a family member with a little larger foot than me.
Asside from this, I am happy with the socks and I think they turned out to be quite nice. I am happy I purchased the book and I plan to knit other socks from other patterns in the book.