My current work in progress:

Stornoway, designed by Alice Starmore from her book Fishermen’s Sweaters, knit in Frangipani 5-ply guernsey wool in the Aran colorway, on a 3.0mm needle.

New Directions in Sock Knitting

I have in my hands a review copy of this:


This is New Directions In Sock Knitting: 18 Innovative Designs Knitted From Every Which Way by Ann Budd, published by Interweave and new this month.

Speaking generally, there have always been two ways to knit a sock: top down or toe up. Do you think that’s all? Think again!

This book is a collection of 18 sock patterns by a variety of well-known designers that will change the way you look at knitting socks. The designs are knit using a variety of techniques (double knitting, intarsia, short-rows, etc.), and in a variety of different directions! Different directions? Some examples:


This pattern is Vanishing Point, designed by Jeny Staiman. You start knitting at the center of the diamond at the instep. Then you work a Judy’s Magic Cast-On down the length of the leg and foot, working it around the diamond. The sides of the sock are worked back and forth simultaneously, so when a gradient yarn is used, the pattern is mirrored across both sides. Clever, huh?


Smokey Zickzacks by Natalia Vasilieva are knit side to side in garter stitch, and increases and decreases form chevrons that produce the traditional knitted-in-the-round sock shape.


For Boomerang by Louise Robert the back leg, heel, and sole are worked in one piece that’s shaped like (you guessed it) a boomerang, then the top of the foot and front of the leg are worked in a lace pattern while the sides of the boomerang are joined into a tube.

You can view all eighteen patterns here on Ravelry and read the description of how they are constructed.

The book features nice clear instructions and includes a very useful illustrated glossary of techniques.

This is definitely not just another book of sock patterns, but a great collection of creative approaches to sock knitting. Who’d like to try out these patterns?

To be entered in a drawing to receive my review copy, leave a comment on this blog post by noon Eastern Time next Wednesday, March 2, and I’ll select a winner at random from the comments posted.

Bogus Bohus

I’m working on the lining of my Bogus Bohus cowl — a much simpler colorwork pattern from the outside.


The construction is this: I started with a provisional cast-on (the green at the bottom of the cowl), cast on approximately a million stitches, knit to the depth I wanted, purled one round for the turning round, and am continuing to knit the lining to the same depth as the outside. The cowl’s circumference is large enough to double around the neck, and I think it’ll be pretty to have the simpler lining show in places. Or you could turn it inside-out so the simpler pattern is on the outside.

Right now it’s smooshed up on the needles so it’s looking rippled. Once off the needles and steam-blocked, everything will lie nice and flat.


There was a question in the comments about working with two yarns held together. For a couple of the colors I am using two laceweight yarns held together. I do not twist them together — just hold them loosely together.


Loki would like you to know that among the various yarns I am using for the cowl is about 1% Ragdoll fur!



  1. Love love love sock knitting and would love this new book!

  2. I count on you to let us know the latest & the greatest! Thank you!

  3. Alice Moisen says:

    It would be fun to try ‘socks in an new way’.

  4. Thank you for the chance to own this lovely book. I love knitting socks.

  5. I love wool socks and pretty socks (read: colorful) but I hate knitting socks (the traditional ways). Or at least, I hated making 2 of the 3 pairs I’ve knit. I’m very interested in this book.

  6. Wow this blows my mind! Which one will be first on the needles???

  7. I’m always looking for new innovations in sock knitting! I’d love to win this book!

  8. What an intriguing collection of patterns! I’d love to try them and dare I say….knock the socks off some of the women in my knitting group!
    Charlene´s last blog post ..Art Impressions Spinner Card

  9. This book is on my wish list – would love to try some new sock knitting techniques!

  10. Thanks for another wonderful give-a-way.

  11. The book looks interesting. Please enter me.
    Only 1% Loki fur?

  12. Holey socks Knitwomen……lately my library’s been growing and I haven’t done the books. This is on my list…have to come up with a holiday soon.

  13. Hooray! Socks!! I’d love to have this book, as it looks really intriguing.

    Give Loki an ear scritch for me…the pictures you post of him just kill me with cuteness. 🙂

  14. Checked Ravelry and thought I’d knit the first five patterns I looked at, so I guess this is one I’ll buy.

  15. The book looks fascinating! I would love to win!
    gussek on Ravelry

  16. These socks look like fun! Thanks for offering a chance to win the book.

  17. I see socks with no toe seams of any kind. My daughter would be thrilled with some of these. 🙂

  18. Have to admit back in the old days when we only knit top down socks is when I started knitting socks. (it was the early 70’s for me) And since I can knit a top down, heel flap gusset sock with out much thought, it is my go to. But it is fun and a great challenge to try new things. The book looks like fun.

  19. Linda G Howell says:

    Wow! Socks are my favorite knitting projects!!

  20. Wow, such fantastic socks!!! However, your cowl is also really lovely–it is going to be gorgeous when finished (just like Loki lol)

  21. All of those patterns look fun.

  22. i FINALLY learned toe-up and thought i was close to mastering the art of knitting socks. Now all these new techniques to try ! and i do love ann budd’s designs.

  23. What an intriguing book. Hope they have it in my library!

  24. What extraordinary socks! Definitely not idiot work (my name for no-thought knitting!)

  25. Leslie Fischgrund says:

    How very interesting! Please include me in the drawing…

  26. I’d love to win that book, would be nice to try socks from a different point of view. Btw, love your cowl, the colours blend so harmoniously!
    Rachelle Crosbie´s last blog post ..Tucks and Pleating

  27. I love the faux bonus. I did a yoke sweater with a similar neck using up short lengths of hand spun

  28. I am a beginning sock knitter. I can’t imagine starting someplace other than the top or bottom of the sock. What a crazy idea! This book would be fun to have.

  29. Savannagal says:

    I would love to win the book. Thanks for the chance.

  30. Please enter me in the drawing! I’ve become OBSESSED with sock knitting lately. Thanks for sharing it
    Karen K´s last blog post ..Journey to the Centre of the Earth by Jules Verne

  31. Heather Koncz says:

    I have knit socks for years, but these just blow me away. I NEED to get this book one way or the other. Budd has really done it this time. Thanks for the heads-up – I never, ever win anything but you have directed me to some great books – and this sure looks like another, Thanks so much, and give Loki a belly rub – he sure is looking fluffy.

  32. I need this book because here in France I can’t find such inspiration
    thanks Wendy for your blog

  33. Denise Wessman says:

    Sock knitting is so addictive. One can never have just one sock book. It reminds me of cats and chocolate chip cookies. I knit socks for everyone in my family for Xmas. It’s my tradition. Give Loki a hug.

  34. I speculate that future archaeologists, looking at my knitting, will conclude that early 21st century knitters used yarn made with a small percentage of cat fur!

  35. This looks like a fun book!

  36. I always have 3 or 4 pair of socks going at once. Would love to own this book!! Thanks for the chance to try & win it.

  37. Would love to own this book. Thank you very much for the chance to do so.

  38. Sandra Kerr says:

    My mom just got really into knitting socks. I would love to give her this book!

  39. Those are some fiendishly clever sock designs! It’s amazing what people come up with for socks!

  40. Martha michael says:

    Sure! I would love the book. Such neat looking socks and have do much sock yarn just waiting to be used!

  41. Your Bohus work I beautiful. I love Ann Budd’s books , but don’t have this one. lpstarr on Ravelry

  42. Liz Parkinson says:

    just when I thought it was safe to knit socks

    aren’t those clever? I would love a copy of the book but am so pleased you
    shared some of the photos – worth it all by themselves 🙂

  43. Would LOVE a copy of that book!
    Thanks for sharing!

  44. Wow! That looks like a great book! (And hugs to Loki–he’s so darn cute!)

  45. The socks in this book look so cool! Mags9k on Ravelry.

  46. I love to knit socks and would love this book. Hope you pick me.

  47. Those are some seriously cool socks! Would love to try some of them.

  48. A new book is just the ticket to consuming my sock yarn stash! Have a great leap day!

  49. cynthia Stubbs says:

    Ive been knitting the same top down sock pattern for years! Sounds great!

  50. Looks like some fun sock construction methods in this book.

  51. Those socks are genius. I’m amazed at how people’s minds work. Loki is genius too!

  52. Amazing. Starting socks from the middle? I have tried top down and toe up and I have half a sock on long straight needles (that has been there a long time). I can’t wrap my mind around those diamond patterned socks. Will have to check out the book. Thanks for the review.

  53. Catherine S. says:

    How I treasure my knitting projects that have Pearl’s, Ruby’s, Blue’s, and Jasper’s fur in them. Now the lone kitty is sweet Moon, who won’t sit in my lap while I knit. I’m working on it (the “forced cuddling” technique). Your Bohus work is, as always, exquisite, Wendy. You don’t need to put my name in the sock book hat. I only love toe-up Wendy patterns, snob that I am. <3

  54. I have watched this book with interest since it appeared on Ann Budd’s blog. It would be wonderful to have.

  55. Wow! Love that Vanishing Point! Would love to win the book.

    Thanks for the chance.

  56. Since I am an untried sock knitter with only one true attempt under my belt, I’m sure that this book would not be the best place for me to start. However, I really love reading about new techniques, and the more potential ideas I saturate myself with, the more excited I get about one day becoming “a sock knitter”. 😉

  57. Looks like a great book!

  58. Just when I think I have socks all worked out someone comes up with ideas that blow my mind! Definitely need this book.

  59. The book loo.ks lovely

  60. Jennifer T says:

    I’m not usually much of a sock knitter, but those patterns look so fun I’d have to try.

  61. Pick me! Pick me!

  62. Susan (sjanova) says:

    I’ve just turned the heel on my fourth pair of socks for myself (after three for my sister that fit her somewhat marginally — then again, her foot is about 10 hours away by car). I’ve been doing toe-up (starting with your books) and enjoying that but maybe it’s time to check out some other constructions.

  63. I have this book on my Amazon wish list!

  64. Sara Smith says:

    I’m probably the biggest fan of all your sock patterns Wendy, and I’m currently working my way through your Socks from the Tow Up (and loving all of them). However, this book looks like an interesting alternative way to make – love anything technically clever!!

  65. Susan Ipavec says:

    I would love to win a copy of this book! So many beautiful patterns and skills to learn from this book.

  66. addicted to sock knitting this book will be great for new inspriration and of course new socks 🙂 please take me in for the drawing ♥

  67. I would love that book! It looks incredible.

  68. I would love to win this book. Thank you for the opportunity, Wendy!

  69. Sounds like a very creative book! thanks for the chance to win a copy.

  70. How cool is this book!?! I’ve only ever knit socks either cuff down or toe up. This would definately expand my knitting knowlege. Thank you for the wonderful giveaway, I will be getting this book either way.

  71. I love the Bohus and would love to win this book. Thanks