What To Do When You Have A High Instep – Tips for Using KnitFreedom’s Faux Heel Flap Toe-Up Sock Pattern

This tip is for sock-knitters who are making socks with high insteps. It explains how to easily use my pattern for Toe-Up Faux-Heel-Flap socks to make a bigger instep than you normally can with other toe-up sock patterns.

Where Is The Instep Of A Sock? How Do I Know If I Have A High Instep?

The instep of a sock is the part that goes over the top of your foot. If a sock feels tight over the top of your foot, it’s a sign that your instep is high.

To make socks more comfortable for people with high insteps, we need to make the sock bigger around the widest part of the heel (the circumference).

How much bigger? I like to add 1/2-inch (1.5 cm) to the circumference for people with high insteps. Add 1 inch (2.5 sm) for people with very high insteps.

But where to add this extra 1/2-to-1 inch?

Instead of changing anything about the instep stitches (which are normally left alone when making a sock heel), you’ll want to add to the heel stitches. That means making the gusset taller.

Skip the Explanation

If you just want to make the adjustments and don’t need to know how they work, I’ve specified all the changes you need to make in my Faux-Heel-Flap Toe-Up Sock patterns (worsted and fingering weight).

You’ll just need to go through the pattern and circle the numbers that correspond to your foot size and how high your instep is. Jump down the page to where I show you how to do that.

When you make a gusset taller on a toe-up sock, the first adjustment that happens is that you start increasing for the heel 1/4 to 1/2-inch sooner. By the time you get to the heel you’ve increased more than for a normal heel. In the pattern, this shows up in Section 2: Foot and Section 3: Gusset.

When turning the heel, you’ll see that you have more heel stitches to knit across. The pattern takes care of this as well – just make sure to circle the number that corresponds to your size and chosen instep adjustment.

Lastly, when working the faux heel flap, you will work more heel flap rows than usual as you decrease the sock back to its pre-heel width.

To download all of KnitFreedom’s free patterns (including 7 basic toe-up and top-down sock patterns), enter your email address below.

How To Choose Your Options in the Faux-Heel-Flap Pattern

1. Choose Your Size

Decide what size sock you are making. Sock sizing is based on how big your foot is around the ball of the foot.

To find out, measure around the ball of your foot. Now subtract 10%. This is the finished measurement around the foot you want for your sock.

For example, my foot measures 9.5 inches around the ball. So my finished sock should measure about 8.5 inches around. According to the finished measurements in the pattern, I would choose the size Medium/Large.

2. Choose Your Instep Adjustment

Decide whether to use the high-instep or the very-high-instep pattern adjustment. The high-instep adjustment adds 1/2 inch (1.5 cm) to the sock circumference at the instep. The very-high-instep adjustment adds 1 inch (2.5 cm).

3. On Your Pattern, Circle the Numbers that Correspond to Your Size and Instep Adjustment

Go through the pattern and, wherever you see parentheses or brackets showing numbers or stitches separated by a semicolon, circle the number that corresponds to your size and instep adjustment. The adjustments for the high instep are shown in {Italics and brackets}.

Sometimes there are fewer choices.

Voilá! A Perfectly-Adjusted High-Instep Sock Pattern

Thanks to Mrs. Sharpe for contributing the original high-instep numbers when this pattern was first requested. See her original comments on this post.

Hey, A New Blog Post? Is Liat Back? What Does This Mean for KnitFreedom?

Hi, astute and beloved reader! Literally I am back, because this is me. As for what this means… I’m just publishing this blog post quietly for now because I’m not sure what’s going to happen next. I’m just so happy to have a blog post for you that I’m going to leave it at that for today. Hugs!

Related Posts

Posted in Socks | 34 Comments

Liat Gat Takes Hiatus

I’m very sorry to tell you that I need to take a leave from KnitFreedom for the next few months, due to a family emergency.

In light of the new Lace class that I had planned, I know I’m letting you down. I was very excited to teach you.

Candy, our Customer Happiness expert, will still be here to answer any questions you have about our patterns and products. However, I won’t be able to answer your knitting questions or post anything new on the blog.

Thank you for your understanding. I will miss your enthusiasm for knitting and your wonderful questions.


**FLASH SALE** All Classes Are 50% Off Today and Tomorrow – Show Your Support or Just Get Great Knitting Videos Incredibly Cheap

If you want to buy any classes, they’ll be 50% off today and tomorrow. Use the coupon code HIATUS to save 50%.

>> Shop the KnitFreedom store now <<

All proceeds will go towards keeping KnitFreedom running while I am away.

Donate to KnitFreedom

If you don’t need any classes today, but would like to help keep KnitFreedom running in my absence, you can donate by clicking below.

All proceeds will go towards keeping KnitFreedom running while I am away.

Posted in Announcements | 51 Comments

Enter to win a $250 Gift Certificate to Signature Needle Arts

I’m excited to share this giveaway with you today, because Signature Needles are my absolute favorite needles. You’ve seen them in nearly every video I have made for you!

Below, you can enter to win a $250 gift certificate to Signature Needle Arts. With this gift certificate you could buy one of their luxurious gift sets and a couple single point needles!

We will notify the winner via email on Friday, 5/15 at 7am Pacific time.

To enter, take a little stroll around Signature’s website, and let us know in the comments below what you would buy if you won the gift certificate.

Click here to visit Signature Needle Arts.

I’m particularly fond of their size 9 stiletto tip. :)

Update: So sorry that we’ve had a problem with the link to the survey. Don’t worry – to enter, make sure you click “Enter” in the Rafflecopter widget, and comment below with what you would buy if you won the gift certificate. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Posted in Announcements | Tagged , , | 914 Comments

9 Top-Rated Lace-Knitting Projects for Beginners

Here are my top picks for the best and easiest lace patterns out there. These are perfect for beginners – it doesn’t get any easier than this.

9 Super-Easy Beginner Lace Patterns

Patterns shown above:

  1. Diagonal Scarf by Churchmouse Yarns & Teas, photo (c) Jared Flood
  2. Sheesha by Sandhya S.
  3. Poplar dishcloth by Julia Stanfield
  4. On the Road by Janina Kallio (love her!)
  5. Stella by Janina Kallio
  6. Pretty Basic by Janina Kallio
  7. Ardent by Janina Kallio
  8. Flirty by Janina Kallio
  9. Flirty by Janina Kallio

Did you notice all the great-looking easy shawls by designer Janina Kallio in the graphic above? Here’s her Ravelry designer page if you want to check out more of her work. Teaser: she may be doing a guest lesson for us in the upcoming Effortless Lace class.

Keep getting inspired by gorgeous easy projects – follow my Beginner Lace Pinterest board

Click here to follow my Pinboard for Super-Easy Beginner Lace projects. I’ll keep adding to it over the next few months as we do the lace class together, so it will be a great resource for you.

A lot of the patterns above are free so, if you like how they look, download them and look over the instructions to see if you understand them.

What makes these lace patterns great for beginners?

Poplar - Easy Lace Dishcloth by Julia Stanfield

Poplar – an easy lace dishcloth by Julia Stanfield (#3 in the graphic above)

Like I mentioned in my last post on the 4 Things that Make Lace Projects Hard or Easy, the easiest projects are ones that you knit flat. That means back and forth like a scarf or a dishcloth.

The other thing that makes a pattern easy is if the pattern is written out, like this: “K2TOG, YO, K1.”

The last thing that makes patterns easy is if they call for thicker yarn. They knit up FAST. That means they require less patience (a whole other knitting skill altogether).

If you can read easy patterns and knit back and forth, you can start to knit easy lace.

You’ll just need to understand the following basic abbreviations:

  • CO: Cast On
  • BO: Bind Off
  • K: Knit
  • P: Purl
  • YO: Yarnover, and
  • K2tog: Knit 2 Together

I’ll be talking more about the basic building blocks of lace patterns in my upcoming lace class but, for now, refer to the online video knitting dictionary to look up anything you don’t understand.

If you’re open to trying to read patterns, you are in a good position to start learning lace. But you don’t have to do it alone! I’ll be taking you through the whole process step-by-step in my upcoming class, Effortless Lace.

Coming Up Next: 11 Slightly-Harder-But-Still-Very-Easy-And-Gorgeous Projects for Lace Knitting

Posted in Lace Knitting | 2 Comments

4 Characteristics That Make A Lace Pattern Easy Or Hard

When you’re looking at a lace pattern and seeing if you want to knit it, first check these two things:

  1. Is it knitted (a) flat or (b) in the round?
  2. Does it have (a) written directions or (b) charted directions?

Also check for yarn thickness and amount. Does it use:

  1. (a) thick yarn or (b) thin yarn?
  2. (a) just a little bit of yarn or (b) a lot of yarn?

The more “a” answers you have, the easier the lace pattern.

Therefore, the easiest lace patterns:

  • are knitted flat
  • have written directions
  • use thick yarn
  • use not very much yarn
"Poplar" lace dishcloth by Julia Stanfield – A very easy lace pattern

“Poplar” lace dishcloth by Julia Stanfield – A very easy lace pattern

By contrast, the hardest lace patterns:

  • are knitted in the round
  • have charted directions
  • use thin yarn
  • use a lot of yarn
Morgenrot pattern by Herbert Niebling – a charted pattern knitted in the round

Morgenrot pattern by Herbert Niebling – a difficult charted pattern knitted in the round

Not to fear! Easy or hard, I’m going to teach you how to do every kind of lace project in my upcoming class, Effortless Lace.

Over the next few blog posts, you’ll learn about these characteristics in more detail. I’ll also be giving you my recommendations (with beautiful graphics) for great lace patterns to knit at every difficulty level.

Update: Charts aren’t hard!

Update: Lots of knitters replied to today’s post in disagreement about charted knitting patterns being hard.

Thank you for your comments! To clarify, I love charts and think they are the absolute best kind of pattern for lace.

However, easy patterns don’t usually need charts. The lack of a chart often means that a pattern is easy and therefore good for beginners.

Lace patterns that are intermediate or advanced absolutely require a chart.

So the presence of a chart can mean that the pattern itself is complex enough to warrant one.

Charts are great – they make difficult patterns easy to understandHowever, if you don’t know how to read a lace chart, the pattern, no matter how easy it is, will be quite difficult for you. You’ll need to learn to read a chart before you can knit it.

This is like learning to drive a car before you can take a road trip. It’s totally worth it.

I hope this helps clear up my views on charts! I always welcome your comments and questions.

Posted in Lace Knitting | 32 Comments