I do all of my socks on DPN’s (Double Pointed Needles). I know alot of people swear by the magic loop method but once I got my head around using DPNs they just worked for me. Plus they are a useful item for in your stash. I use different sizes for socks, shaping the crown of hats and also they make really good needles for cabling.
If you are making a sock with fingering or sock wool you will likely have a pattern that tells you to cast on 56, 60 or 64 stitches. There are other sizes, but these are the most common. This is the stage that most intimidated me for the longest time, but if we break it down it becomes much easier! What am I supposed to do with all of these needles – I’m used to two needles – and then I’d give up. So the instructions below are how to get over that initial freak out.
All of the steps below are based on a 60 stitch pattern. You would add or subtract one stitch per needle for a 64 or 56 stitch pattern. I will be referring to the Needles as N1, N2, N3 and so on.
Using two of your DPN needles, cast on 15 stitches onto N1. I use a long-tail cast on, but you can use any cast on that you are comfortable with. Right now it looks like normal knitting. You have two needles and all your stitches are being created on the left-hand needle. Once you have 15 stitches though you need to move onto N2. This is where things used to come unstuck for me. You need to continue on with creating new stitches, using the same yarn, but on a new needle. Pick up a new needle and cast on 15 stitches onto N2. You now have 30 stitches across 2 needles. Keep going until you have 15 stitches on 4 different needles.
You can cast on more than 15 stitches on N1. I often cast on 20 or 25 and then just slip the correct number of stitches across to N2 and continue on. If your DPNs are long enough you may want to cast all the stitches onto N1 and then slip them across the other needles until you have the correct number on each needle.
Carefully lay your needles into a square, making sure that all stitches are facing the same way and the yarn has not twisted over. N4 should be touching N1. We are joining our stitches in the round, just we would if we were using circular needles. The big difference is that it looks like a square rather than a round, but I promise you – it will knit a lovely round sock! Magic!
Once you have joined your square you are ready to start knitting your sock.
We’ll be looking at different sock tops in the next part of this series.
For the beginning of this series please click here: https://kororaknits.ca/2020/08/how-to-make-a-sock-part-1/