Part 5: Making the hang loop and blocking the stocking

Today we'll knit the hang loop as an i-cord, sew in the ends and block our Christmas stockings so they're perfect for filling!

knitting an i-cord

Hang Loop

To make an i-cord is kind of strange but follow along and let's go! You'll only be using 2 needles for this part. With Color A, cast on 8 stitches.

how to knit an i-cord

Then slide those stitches to the other end of the needle. Don't turn your work! Just slide the stitches to the other end.

how to knit an i-cord

Pull your knitting yarn across the back of your work and knit in to the first stitch. It seems odd but it's ok.

knitting an i-cord

Yes, there's a big thread across the back but that's ok. I promise! 

how to knit an i-cord

Knit across those stitches. Don't turn.

how to knit an i-cord

When you finish slide the stitches to the other end of the needle and keep going in this manner.

making an i-cord correctly

If you peek on the back of the work you'll see there's some long loops.

how to knit an i-cord

Gently tug down on the bottom of the work.

knitting an i-cord

 And those extra loops will tighten up.

making an i-cord

Work in i-cord until piece measures 5". 

binding off i-cord

Bind off the i-cord as you normally would.

attaching the i-cord

Attach the hang loop to the top of the stocking at the same edge as the heel.

hand knit christmas stocking

So there you go! Your very own hand-knitted Christmas stocking! Take a moment to congratulate yourself.

Now let's finish it by blocking.

blocking hand knits

Block the Stocking

Blocking helps relax and even out your knitting stitches. It just refines the finished piece to help it looks as refined as possible. To block your Wooly Worsted stocking you'll need a bowl, some wool wash (I like Soak) and two large towels.

blocking hand knit items

Add your stocking and a few drops of wool wash to the bowl and fill with cool water.

soaking a hand knit garment

Submerge your stocking to and gently swish it around to release any air bubbles. You won't need to worry about the colors of Wooly Worsted yarn running or bleeding because Wooly Worsted is specially treated to be washed. Your water should remain clear. Let the stocking soak for about 15-20 minutes.

blocking hand knits

Drain the water from your bowl. Do not squeeze or wring your stocking. It looks pretty pathetic at this point but that's ok. It will recover!

blocking hand knits

Carefully lay your stocking out on a towel. Be sure not to pull or tug on one part of your stocking. 

blocking hand knits

Fold your towel over your stocking. I folded in thirds.

blocking hand knits

Then roll it on up! Press and squeeze the towel as you roll to get as much water out of the stocking as you can.

blocking hand knits

Unroll your towel and check out your stocking. Lay it flat on the other, dry towel. Gently arrange the stocking in the way you would like it to dry. Line up your stitches, smooth out any bumps then let it rest. Leave your stocking to dry. Do not touch it until it's dry! This will set your stitches for the long run. It could take a whole day for your stocking to dry completely. Now it's time to hang your new stocking!

hand knit christmas stocking

It's ready for Santa to stuff! 

Thank you to everyone who participated and I hope you had fun making the Stuff It Stocking with us! Be sure to send photos of your finished stocking to me (heather at eweewe dot com). 

We were so happy to have lots of Ewe Ewe yarn stores participating in the KAL! Check out these stores to make your own Stuff It Stocking or other great Ewe Ewe project: 

Read more in our Ravelry group >

Join on InstagramTwitter and Facebook with #stuffitkal.

Thanks for joining our Stuff It Stocking knit along!

Part 4: Closing the toe and Kitchener Stitch

Welcome to Part 4 of the Stuff It Stocking knit along! We're on the home stretch and today we're going to decrease this stocking right off the needles. We'll be working the toe and finishing with the Kitchener Stitch.

Changing colors at the toe

Toe

Cut Colors B and C. Change to Color A and knit to the last 3 stitches on Needle 1, knit 2 together then knit 1.

Decreasing at the toe of a sock

Work Needle 2 as knit 1, SSK, knit to the end of the needle.

Needle 3 knits as for Needle 1 with: knit to the last 3 stitches, knit 2 together, knit 1.

And Needle 4 knits as for Needle 2: knit 1, SSK, knit to the end of the needle. You have completed Round 1 and decreased 4 stitches. Now knit the next round.

You'll be working these two rounds for the majority of the toe. Let's read it as it's written in the Stuff It Stocking knitting pattern:

Round 1: K to the last 3 sts on needle 1, K2tog, K1; needle 2, K1, SSK, K to end; needle 3, K to the last 3 sts, K2tog, K1; needle 4, K 1, SSK, K to end.

Round 2: K all sts.

Repeat these two rounds until 28 sts remain.

Decreasing at the toe of a sock

Once you are down to 28 stitches (you should have 7 stitches on each needle) repeat only Round 1 until 8 sts remain.

Preparing for Kitchener Stitch

You will now have 2 stitches on each needle. Knit across the two stitches on Needle 1.

Preparing for Kitchener Stitch

Redistribute the stitches from Needles 1 & 4 on to one needle and Needles 2 & 3 on another needle. Hold them parallel. Cut the yarn leaving an 18" tail. 

How to knit Kitchener Stitch

Flip the stocking over so the yarn is coming from the back needle. Thread a yarn needle with the tail. We are now ready to begin the Kitchener Stitch.

How to knit Kitchener Stitch

Kitchener Stitch 

Step 1: Insert the needle into the first stitch on the front needle as if to PURL. Gently pull the yarn through the stitch leaving the stitch on the front needle.

How to knit Kitchener Stitch

Step 2: Insert the needle into the first stitch on the back needle as if to KNIT. Gently pull the yarn through the stitch leaving the stitch on the back needle.

How to work Kitchener Stitch

Step 3: Insert the needle into the first stitch on the front needle as if to PURL. Gently pull the yarn through the stitch and off the front needle.

How to sew Kitchener Stitch

Step 4: Insert the needle through the first stitch on the front needle as if to PURL. Gently pull the yarn through the stitch leaving it on the front needle.

How to work Kitchener Stitch

Step 5: Insert the needle into the first stitch on the back needle as if to PURL. Gently pull the yarn through the stitch and off the front needle.

Sewing the Kitchener Stitch

Step 6: Insert the needle into the first stitch on the back needle as if to KNIT. Gently pull the yarn through the stitch leaving it on the back needle.

Repeat Steps 3-6 until all the stitches have been worked. 

Finishing the Kitchener Stitch

Step 6: Insert the needle into the first stitch on the back needle as if to KNIT. Gently pull the yarn through the stitch leaving it on the back needle.

Repeat Steps 3-6 until all the stitches have been worked. 

Finishing the toe of a sock, grafting

If you don't get it on the first try that's ok! Working the Kitchener Stitch takes practice and time. It's a strange technique to graft live stitches together with a yarn needle. Just remember not to pull the stitches to tight with every step. Remember you're adding a new row of knitting not making a seam.

Secure your last stitch and weave in your yarn end. You just knit a whole sock!

Check in again on Thursday, December 18 for Part 5.

Find a Ewe Ewe yarn store near you >

We're also excited to we have lots of Ewe Ewe yarn stores participating in the KAL! Check out these stores, call to see what time they're knitting their Stuff It Stockings and maybe you can knit along with them! 

Read more in our Ravelry group >

Join on InstagramTwitter and Facebook with #stuffitkal.

Or... leave a comment below! Happy knitting! 

Part 3: Turning the heel of the stocking

Welcome to Part 3 of the Stuff It Stocking KAL. We are knitting along and have completed the top in Part 1, the body of the stocking in Part 2 and today we're going to knit the heel and instep. 

For the heel part of the stocking we will only be knitting on half of the stitches. First we'll work the heel flap, then we'll turn the heel and lastly we'll pick up stitches and join it back in the round and work the foot of the stocking. It sounds like a lot but I assure you it's not!

knitting a sock heel

Heel Flap

Cut Colors B and C leaving enough yarn to weave in later. Join Color A. Knit across 13 stitches on your first needle.

knitting a sock heel

There's our 13 stitches on Needle 1. Now, TURN your work over.

knitting a sock heel

You should be looking at the inside of the stocking. Purl 26 stitches, 13 that you just did with Color A and 13 on the next needle to your left. Purl them all on to one needle.

IMG_9504.jpg

We now have 26 stitches on one needle and these are the only ones we'll be working on for this portion of the stocking. The other two needles will just remain in place as stitch holders until we're ready to use those stitches again later.

knitting the heel of a sock

Row 1 is worked as slip 1, knit 1 and you alternate these two stitches as you go across the row. To slip a stitch means you do NOT knit it, just move it to the other needle. I slip my stitches as if I am purling for this portion. You can slip them knit-wise or purl-wise as long as you're consistent for the entire heel flap.

knitting the heel of a sock

Row 1: *Slip 1, knit 1* repeat from *to* across row. TURN.

Row 2: Slip 1, purl across row. (Note you only slip the first stitch on the purl side rows.)

Repeat these two rows 12 times more.

knitting the heel of a sock

Your heel flap will look like this on the right side when you've worked all of your repeats.

knitting the heel of a sock

And here is the inside or wrong side of the heel flap. 

That wasn't so bad was it? Now we're going to turn the heel. This would be the part of the sock that wraps from the back of the foot and hugs the heel. It's a fun adventure that will amaze you if you haven't done it before! 

how to knit the heel of a sock

Turn Heel

Knit across 15 stitches. Just plain knit, no slipping here.

how to knit the heel of a sock

Next you're going to decrease with SSK or slip, slip, knit. To perform this decrease slip one stitch knit-wise, slip a second stitch in the same manner.

turning a heel

Then insert the left needle into the front of the two slipped stitches and knit them together. That's an SSK. Now knit 1 stitch and TURN.

how to knit the heel of a sock

On the inside, slip the first stitch purl-wise then purl 5 stitches.

how to turn the heel of a sock

Purl 2 stitches together, or P2tog, by picking up two stitches and purling them together. Purl 1 more stitch and TURN.

IMG_9520.jpg

You will now be able to see a gap forming where you have turned your work. Can you see the gap in the middle of my row? There should be 8 stitches on either side of the gap.

turning the heel of a sock

Next work these two rows:

Row 3: Slip 1, knit to 1 stitch before the gap, SSK (across gap), knit 1 and TURN.

Row 4: Slip 1, purl to 1 stitch before the gap, P2tog (across gap), purl 1 and TURN. 

turning the heel of a sock

Here's how the gap looks on the wrong side. Continue working the two rows until 16 stitches remain on your needle. 

sock heel

Wow! Isn't that awesome? Look that how the heel just suddenly appears. 

turning the heel of a sock in knitting

Next, knit 8 stitches and leave them on the needle. 

picking up stitches

Cut Color A and change to Color C. With a new needle (needle 1), knit across the remaining 8 stitches. Rotate your work slightly. We will now be picking up stitches down the edge of the heel flap. Insert your needle in to the large, slipped stitches on the edge of the heel flap, wrap your yarn around the needle and pick up a stitch. 

picking up stitches on a sock

Continue picking up stitches along the heel flap until you have 13 additional stitches on  your needle. 

picking up stitches on a sock heel

You will then have 21 stitches on needle 1.

picking up stitches on a sock heel

Next work the 13 reserved stitches on needles 2 and 3 which will begin to join your stocking back in the round.

picking up stitches on a sock heel

Now we just have 13 more stitches to gather. With a new needle (needle 4) pick up 13 stitches down the second edge of the heel flap.

turning the heel of a sock

Knit the 8 stitches being held on the remaining needle. There should now be 21 stitches on needle 4.

turning the heel of a sock

Now your stocking should look like this. We're back to four needles and working in the round. The beginning of the round is at the center of the heel. From the bottom and moving clockwise we have Needle 1 with 21 stitches, Needle 2 with 13 stitches, Needle 3 with 13 stitches and Needle 4 with 21 stitches. 

turning the heel of a sock

Foot

Add Color B and begin working the stripe pattern. Knit to the last 3 stitches on needle 1. Knit 2 together (K2tog) then knit 1. Knit across needles 2 and 3.

decreasing the heel of a sock

For needle 4, knit 1, SSK then knit to the end of the round. 

Next round: Knit across all 4 needles.

Decrease round: Knit to last 3 stitches on needle 1, K2tog, K1; K13 on needles 2 and 3; on needle 4, K1, SSK, knit to end.

Working in the established stripe pattern, repeat these two rounds until 52 stitches remain.

working the foot of a sock

Continue working in the stripe pattern until the foot measures 7" from the back of the heel ending with 3 rounds of Color B.

Phew! It was quite a section but isn't it amazing to watch it come together like that? You now know how to turn a heel. That's the hardest part of a sock and you just did it. You're a pro!

Check in again on Tuesday, December 16 for Part 4.

Find a Ewe Ewe yarn store near you >

We're also excited to we have lots of Ewe Ewe yarn stores participating in the KAL! Check out these stores, call to see what time they're knitting their Stuff It Stockings and maybe you can knit along with them! 

Read more in our Ravelry group >

Join on InstagramTwitter and Facebook with #stuffitkal.

Or... leave a comment below! Happy knitting! 

Part 2: Stripes and carrying colors up in knitting

Welcome to Part 2 of the Stuff It Stocking KAL. I hope you made it through Part 1 without any problems. Today we'll be working on the body of the stocking and working stripes without cutting the yarn. Sounds fun! 

Body of Stocking 

For the body of the stocking we will be working a stripe pattern of three rows with Color B and two rows with Color C. With all these stripes we don't want to have to cut the yarn each time we change colors so we'll carry the yarn up the inside of the stocking with a simple twist. You'll have two balls of yarn attached to your project but that's much easier than weaving in all those ends if you had to cut the yarn each time!

adding stripes in knitting

To begin, cut Color A and set that skein aside. Add Color B and begin knitting. Work three rounds.

adding stripes to knitting

Leave Color B attached and add Color C. Knit two rounds with Color C.

carrying colors up while knitting stripes

Now you will perform a skilled, expert knitting magic trick. Keep Color C attached, reach down inside your stocking, find Color B and gently pull it behind Color C. Begin knitting with Color B and work your three rows.

It may not look like much now but by simply bringing one yarn behind the other in the same direction on each color change will link them together to prevent holes from forming. And no crazy ends to weave in!

carrying colors while knitting stripes

After a few rows you should have a nice tidy link system hidden inside your stocking. Knitting hocus pocus!

knitting stripes

Continue working the five rows of the stripe pattern until you have eight sets. Work three more rounds with Color B.

christmas stocking

Now work one only one round with Color C.

And that's it! Day 2 of the Stuff It Stocking KAL is complete. To continue following along check in again on Thursday, December 11.

Find a Ewe Ewe yarn store near you >

We're also excited to we have lots of Ewe Ewe yarn stores participating in the KAL! Check out these stores, call to see what time they're knitting their Stuff It Stockings and maybe you can knit along with them! 

Read more in our Ravelry group >

Join on InstagramTwitter and Facebook with #stuffitkal.

Or... leave a comment below! Happy knitting! 

Part 1: Starting your stocking and making a hem

Welcome to the first section of our Stuff It Stocking knit along. We're excited you're here! In this post we'll be starting our stockings. The topics include how to cast on to double-pointed knitting needles, knitting in the round and making a knitted hem.

If you have any questions you can leave them in the comments below or check the Ravelry group to see if the same question has already been answered.

We're also excited that we have Ewe Ewe yarn stores participating in the KAL! Check out these stores, call to see what time they're knitting their Stuff It Stockings and maybe you can knit along with them!

Let's get started! 

christmas stocking supplies

Supplies

To complete the Stuff It Stocking you will need: 

  • one skein of three colors of Wooly Worsted yarn
  • a set of five size US 8 (5 mm) double-pointed knitting needles
  • one stitch marker

For my stocking I chose colors Pistachio, Vanilla and Black Licorice.

Now we need to decide how we'll use them. Before you begin the stocking choose which color of yarn will be Color A for the top, heel and toe. Color B makes the larger stripes and Color C the smaller contrasting stripes on the body of the stocking.

Here's my layout:

  • Color A: Pistachio
  • Color B: Black Licorice
  • Color C: Vanilla
casting on to double-pointed needles

Begin

Using Color A cast on 52 stitches. I like to cast on to one needle and then slip the necessary number of cast on stitches on to the other three needles. 

casting on to double-pointed needles
casting on to double-pointed needles

Carefully slip one stitch at a time on to a new needle until you have 13 stitches on four needle. Set the knitting needles in a circle and be sure that the cast on edge is not twisted.

Now with your fifth needle, knit with the yarn coming from your last cast on stitch in to your first cast on stitch. This joins the knitting in the round.

Place your stitch marker on the needle after your first stitch to mark the beginning of the round. The beginning of the round is really before the first stitch but this helps us keep track of the round and then the stitch marker won't fall off the needle.

knitting with double pointed needles

Continue knitting across the first double-pointed needle until all 13 stitches are on the righthand needle and the lefthand needle is empty. Rotate your work and knit the next 13 stitch from the next needle.

knitting with double-pointed needles

Continue knitting in the round from needle to needle. Simple slip your stitch marker on to the righthand needle as you come to it. 

knitting in the round

Once your work measures 2" from the cast on edge you are ready to start the hem. Be sure to measure when you have completed a full round of knitting, in other words before you start the needle with the stitch marker on it. When measuring, be sure to measure from just under your knitting needle to the edge of your work for an accurate measurement.

making a knitted hem

Make Hem

Creating this hem will give the top of your stocking a nice finished edge. The hem is basically made by knitting two stitches together – one from the left needle and one from the cast on edge.

Start by folding the cast on edge up toward the back of your work placing the wrong-sides together. The first cast on stitch should meet the back of the first stitch on your needle. 

making a knitted hem

Insert the knitting needle in to the first stitch at the beginning of the round. Pick up one stitch from the cast on edge and knit it with the stitch on the needle. Repeat for each of the 52 stitches.

making a knitted hem

Here's how it looks as you make your way around. This photo shows three completed needles and the fourth needle waiting to be hemmed.

making a knitted hem

Here is the completed hem! You can see that we've hidden the inside of the fabric and made a rounded edge for the top of the stocking.

knitting in the round

Continue knitting normally until the piece measures 2" from the hemmed edge. 

And that's it! Day 1 of the Stuff It Stocking KAL is complete. To continue following along check in again on Tuesday, December 9.

Find a Ewe Ewe yarn store near you >

Read more in our Ravelry group >

Join on InstagramTwitter and Facebook with #stuffitkal.

Or... leave a comment below! Happy knitting! 

Announcing the Stuff It Stocking KAL!

The holiday season is coming faster than we know it so let's make a Christmas stocking just in time for Santa to stuff it full of goodies. The Stuff It Stocking knit along is the perfect way to learn how to knit a sock. You'll learn lots of new techniques and I'll be right here to answer any questions for you. Let's knit together!

The Stuff It Stocking will begin on Tuesday, December, 4, 2014 and run for two and a half weeks. You can make the Stuff It Stocking even if you've never knit a sock before! This top-down sock knitting pattern has a few extra techniques, too. If you're a more experienced knitter maybe you'll learn something new or maybe you just want to knit along. Great!

What will I learn?

Each topic will be posted here on our blog. Here are the dates and topics for each section of the KAL: 

  • Thursday 12/4: Casting on, knitting in the round, working the hem at the top.
  • Tuesday 12/9: Knitting the body of the sock and carrying colors while striping.
  • Thursday 12/11: Making the heel flap, turning the heel, knitting the instep.
  • Tuesday 12/16: Decreasing for the toe and Kitchener Stitch.
  • Thursday 12/18: Hang loop i-cord, finishing and blocking. Santa's coming!

What do I need?

Knit along supplies

Your supplies list is: 

  • Yarn: 1 ball of three colors of Wooly Worsted merino yarn
  • Needles: Set of 5 size US 8 (5 mm) double pointed knitting needles
  • Supplies: 1 stitch marker and a yarn needle
  • Pattern: Stuff It Stocking knitting pattern (available for 25% off for the KAL on ravelry.com. Use code: SANTA.)

To purchase your supplies you can find a Ewe Ewe yarn store on our Retail Shops page here

How do I follow along?

We'll be doing all the posts here on our blog. Add a bookmark! Join our KAL group on Ravelry. Be sure to follow eweeweyarns on InstagramTwitter and Facebook. Use the hashtag #stuffitkal.

Let's knit! What colors of Wooly Worsted yarn will you pick? 

The KAL has started: Part 1, Part 2 ...