Sock heel question

I have a general question about heels. Can you substitute a short row heel wrap and turn for the flap and gusset heel? If yes do you need to do any adjustments to the pattern?

Yes, and yes. But minor changes only. I always knit the short row heel. The total heel stitches start with half of CO amount, and reduce by short rows to one quarter of that amount if you started with an even number CO. If 1/4 is a fraction, use the lower whole number as the decrease target. As I knit of 4 DPNs with a fifth as the working needle, once I set the heel up, It takes care of tracking itself easily. I can need to pick up two stitches at the joint when increasing back up to join the rest of the stitches, but whatever it takes is okay.

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I should add that for narrow, bony heels, decreasing down to 1/6 the CO is possible, but it makes a little taller total heel, so start the heel a couple rows sooner.

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Thank you! I’m pretty new to sock knitting but have enough knowledge to know how some sock construction.

Hi Algeabloom! Novaskillsinc is correct about the changes you need to make to a flap and gusset pattern to do a short row heel, but an important thing to note is that a short row heel typically has a smaller width around the ankle and the heel of the foot than a flap and gusset heel does, which can create fit issues with the sock. These two MDK articles explain why pretty well:

I find for myself, short row heels without any tweaks don’t fit my feet very well because of the reasons explained in the articles above. I think the only way to find out what works best for you though is to knit a whole bunch of different heels and figure out what fits you best! Good luck on your sock knitting journey, they’re one of my favorite things to knit!

Thank you! These articles are great! I like the look of short row heels and they seem to fit me pretty well. But the flap and gusset seem to fit everyone if I’m making socks as a gift. I love knitting socks too!

The Crazy Sock Lady on You Tube covers Every Possible Permutation of socks, made by all methods. Just sayin’. :yarn::heavy_heart_exclamation:

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Thanks I’ll check it out!

Try the Fleegle’s heel!!! It’s simple and does not require changing the sick pattern stitches!! It’s the only heel i knit!!

Thanks! I’ll give it a look!

It’s true, the short row heel is called the “skinny ankle heel” by some. Adjusting exactly how many stitches are in the heel section vs. the instep, and how many stitches you reduce via short rows are the variables to play with. The advice to learn several styles and pick the best one as you go along is correct. Just don’t get stuck in a style war with people…your knitting, your choice, always! :smile_cat: