Heel Flaps Are BACK – The New “Faux-Heel-Flap” Toe-Up Sock

Closeup of a turned heel and heel flapWait – heel flaps are BACK?

I thought we got rid of heel flaps when the world discovered the no-holes Fleegle heel!

Nope – turns out we just took a breather while a newer, better heel flap was in the works.

It’s not that I don’t love the Fleegle heel, but my lovely readers and I kept bumping into a few problems with it.

Three reasons why the (beloved) Fleegle heel is not necessarily the best and only way to turn a heel:

1) You can’t adjust the heel for a high instep.

2) You can’t do the heel in a different color if you want two-tone socks.

3) You can’t add fun heel-flap patterns like the eye-of-the-partridge heel.

But a traditional top-down heel flap isn’t perfect either, because

1) You have to knit the sock top-down. Ugh.

2) It’s hard to know when to start the heel flap.

3) You have to pick up stitches.

Isn’t there some way to turn a heel on a toe-up sock that solves all of these problems?

Well, it was mighty hard to find good toe-up heel-flap sock patterns on the web, so, with the help of Miriam Felton’s tutorial, I created a basic pattern that we all can use.

Finally: A Toe-Up Sock With The Perfect Heel Flap

Purple toe-up socks with heel flap, shown out of car windowI’m not afraid to call this heel flap perfect! It really does solve all the problems listed above, and I teach you how to do it on today’s video.

The beauty of this heel flap is that you can add a pattern to the heel, even make it in a different color if you want, and never have to pick up stitches or guess when you should start.

You can easily adjust it for a high instep (or a really high instep) and never have socks that are too tight around the ankle.

There are no seams, no holes, and it’s really fast. So fast, in fact, that it only takes a 12-minute video to do the entire thing, and that’s with me explaining each step carefully.

Excited yet?

“The perfect toe-up heel flap has no holes, no picking up stitches, and is adjustable for high insteps.” Click to Tweet

Line Break

But wait! There’s more.

Practice All Your Superstar Skills On This One Heel Flap

You know I never like to pass up an opportunity to challenge you, dear reader, to use all your skills.

Another reason to love this toe-up heel-turn technique is that’s it’s basically a compact little exercise for practicing many of the skills you’ve learned while following this blog.

In fact, while making the video I started to sound like a commercial for some sort of KNITFreedom “app store” – there’s a video for that! There’s a video for that, too!

Any of these sound familiar?

  • Knitting fast
  • Recognizing when it’s time to increase
  • Counting your stitches fast
  • Wrapping and turning
  • Picking up and knitting wraps on the purl side
  • Purling backwards
  • Reading your work

These are the skills and tricks that you’ll use, time and time again, on complex projects, and we are going to practice all of these in the video. All in 12 minutes.

Now let’s put these skills to work on the long-awaited basic worsted-weight toe-up heel-flap sock pattern. I’ve included tons of video links, so you’ll have my help every step of the way.

Download The Toe-Up Heel-Flap Sock Pattern Here

Ready to get your hands on this free pattern? It’s written for worsted-weight yarn so that it goes fast and you learn all the skills with a minimum of plain knitting.

Purple Malabrigo Toe-Up Heel Flap Socks, seen from the topGet it now:
Check out more pictures and read about the pattern here

or

Go straight to the pattern download.

What about a fingering-weight version?

I’ve got a pattern for that too! Download the fingering-weight faux-heel-flap toe-up sock pattern.

Next Week: An Advanced Bind-Off You Can Use With This Pattern

See the fun picot edging at the top of the socks in the photos?

Well, picot edging isn’t just for top-downers any more. Coming next week: decorate your cuffs with the stretchy picot hemmed-edge bind-off!

Keep Learning: Get The “How To Knit Toe-Up Two-at-a-Time Socks” Video E-Book

Are you going to try this pattern? Leave a comment! I love to hear your thoughts.

About Liat Gat

Liat is the founder and video knitting expert at KNITFreedom. If you liked this article, you'll love the tips you learn from her FREE video newsletter. Get it now by subscribing here.
This entry was posted in Announcements, Socks. Bookmark the permalink.

86 Responses to Heel Flaps Are BACK – The New “Faux-Heel-Flap” Toe-Up Sock

  1. Oh, this looks GREAT!
    Thanks for sharing.

    • Liat Gat says:

      Great! I hope you try it! :)

      • Connie says:

        You have given me so much confidence to increase my knitting skills. I have finished my first pair of toe-up socks, and they are wonderful! I usually knit projects for others, but these are mine! They feel too good on my foot to let them get away. Now I’m ready to start on my Christmas gifts for others. How in the world would I know when the arch gets to their ankle without asking and ruining the Christmas surprise?

        You have a really good idea with this website. I think anyone who sees it will want to have all the video helps. I have sent your link on to my knitting friends. Hope I win the yarn.

        Oh, I ordered the yarn from the site you recommended, and I love it too.

        Thanks for sharing your expertise!

  2. Sheree says:

    I just love you, what you bring to us along with your enthusiasm and inspiration to not be limited by a written pattern! I am sure all of us are grateful you found your calling. I would love to know what inspires you, who gave you the love of or. Oh boy my kindle wont give my cursor?! Ha! Anyway. Thank you!!!k!?!?!

    • Liat Gat says:

      Sheree, I’m so happy my way of thinking about knitting clicks with you.

      As to what inspires me, I’ve found that there’s a part of my personality that likes to deeply understand a subject, then find out how to apply that knowledge to make things better and solve problems, and then get all excited and explain what I’ve learned to other people to try to help them, too. I can’t turn it off, so it’s good that it meshes so well with KNITFreedom!

  3. Kathryn says:

    What a great tutorial! Thank you SO much!

  4. Linda says:

    You’re a genius! Can’t wait for the fingering weight instructions to come, so that I can try it out. Love it that I can do this heel flap AND the toe-up with the picot top!
    Thanks so much for sharing.

  5. Connie says:

    You’ve done it again! A most clear, concise, professional demonstration of a nifty knitting necessity. What a wonderful gift you are to the knitting community. Thank you again for sharing your expertise in such an accessible way.

  6. Sweetdrk1 says:

    I just ordered as I have been dying to make sock and who is the best teacher ever? YOU are!

  7. Karen says:

    This looks great. I just started toe-up 2 at a time socks in fingering weight yarn. How can this pattern be adapted for fingering wt yarn?

    • Liat Gat says:

      Karen, I’ll be coming out with the numbers for the fingering-weight pattern soon! It’s entering the test phase now. If you want, I’ll email you when I am looking for test knitters, so you can get a jump on the pattern.

      • Jan says:

        I would also love to be a test knitter of the sock weight yarn in this pattern. I just finished my first toe-up 2 at a time socks for my son on magic loop and LOVED it. It seems to go soooooo much faster than one sock at a time. :-)

  8. Sally says:

    I learned to knit toe up socks because my feet are very narrow and I needed thicker socks for my sport shoes. But the fingering weight are sometimes a little light so this is a great thing especially for winter and for boots.

  9. Anne says:

    Your videos and explanations are wonderful. This heel and high instep suggestion are so helpful. I have always had trouble getting heels to look right. Thanks.

  10. Louise says:

    Liat…. I love this format the best ! ! ! I hope it continues.
    Now this is something I have to challenge myself to learn.
    Want to try it with the fingering yarn. Anxious to see the instructions.
    My problem is filling all these emails filled with information. :) and have them at my finger-tips when I want them.
    Any ideas?
    Always looking for your next Blog…. Is this format a Blog????
    Ciao Louise

  11. Joy says:

    Wonderfull video. I would love to download the pattern but I am not able. I would like to experiment with fingering weight sock yarn

  12. Louise says:

    HOLY CAT FISH………………… answered my own question! I just realized I keep missing out by not looking at the Blog Archives….. I FORGOT ALLLLLLLLLLLLL ABOUT THAT.
    I have to explore ALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL of this site…… YES I MUST DO THAT!!!!!
    Louise

    • Liat Gat says:

      Louise, you’re right – the site isn’t organized as well as it could be. I’m actually working on a complete overhaul, where all the resources will be intuitive to find. But to break it down for you, here’s what’s on the site: 1) free videos and tips, 2) free patterns, and 3) paid video knitting courses.

      The free videos and tips are published on my blog once a week, and then get organized into the Blog Archive and the Free Videos pages. The patterns are free to subscribers to KNITFreedom, and you can browse the Video Knitting Courses to see what I’ve got in the store (hint – the over 200 free videos on the site don’t even come close to the number of exclusive step-by-step videos you’ll find in my courses).

      I hope that helps – Have fun exploring the archives!

  13. Marjorie says:

    Liat’s done it again! Bravo! I bow to you.

    and….thanking you so very much for all your time and efforts to help us be better knitters!

  14. Jayne says:

    I LOVE your new video! I can’t wait to start my next pair of socks using this new technique. Thank you so much for sharing your talent with us :o)

    • Liat Gat says:

      Jayne, thank you! I really think you’re going to like this new pattern. Of course post photos on Facebook and Ravelry so we can all see them! :)

  15. Dotti says:

    I agree with all the others singing your praises. I printed out your instructions for the fleegle heel ( is that the same as the “sweet tomato heel” ? ), and Love it. It is so easy. BUT, I also printed our these instructions for a heel flap, just in case I ever knit socks for someone with a high instep. Until then, I’ll probably stick with the fleegle heel. Love your blog Liat!! Wish you lived next door.

  16. kkuff says:

    Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!!! I have always loved the look of a heel flap but I really don’t like picking up stitches. To me, making socks toe-up is the most sensible to achieve a proper fit and I resigned myself to making only the Fleegle heel, but you have opened up a whole new world to me! As usual, your video is top-notch!

    Please keep doing what you do!!!!!

  17. Debbie Pannell says:

    You have gone beyond genius status now to the Queen of Knitting! I am a sock addict so this has got me digging in my stash. I love this kind of heel and never can find toe up socks patterns with it. Can’t WAIT to try it out!!

  18. Carol McKenzie says:

    I am in awe of your knitting and teaching abilities! I am SO eager to try this out with the fingering weight yarn. Thank you SO much for these unbelievable videos and patterns, Liat.

  19. Ingrid says:

    Is this the same as the Two at a time socks, in the “superstar” knitting video? Or do I need to buy another one? This style I’m more familiar with (knitting on dpn) but like the “magic two at a time cast on” better. Hey I’m lazy and anything to same time suits me.

    • Liat Gat says:

      Ingrid, this is a new pattern, but it follows the same general concept as the Two-at-a-Time Socks section of the Knitting Superstar! video course. The only difference is that the heel is different (which is why I posted a video for it up here) and you have an optional picot-hemmed-edge bind-off.

  20. Leanne says:

    Yay! I love making toe-up socks,but wanted to be able to add pattern to the heel. Thanks for the easy to follow instructions!!

  21. Susan says:

    Liat – You’re such an incredible teacher. AAAAAAAmazing! The simplicity of the technique and product are sooooo appealing. I ‘m very excited to try it in fingering weight. My skeins are calling out to me. In the mean time, I’ll practice in worsted weight. Thank you so much.

  22. tom says:

    This is really great! I’m new at socks, and all of my socks have holes where I picked up for the gusset. The worst part of knitting a sock for me is picking up for the gusset. Never again. Thank you Liat.
    Tom

  23. Linda Park says:

    Hi ,Thank you for theTutorial. As usual it takes really good teaching and enthusiasm to stimulate interest. I have made Two pair of socks in my life .One pair 53 yrs ago, and again last year. The experience was not a rewarding one. This is a completely fresh approach, being toe up and I am geared to try again with the help of your videos. hopefully I will have warm toes by winter. regards Linda

  24. Lesley Innes says:

    Thank you Liat I always enjoy your Tips and Tricks e-mails and videos. Your videos are so well done and easy to follow. I will definitely try out this method. Have you seen Cat Bordhi’s Sweet Tomato Heel – also fabulous. Please keep doing what you do and may you continue to have much success.

  25. Kerstin says:

    Thank you so much for posting this heel pattern! I did my first socks ever with the Fleagle heel which was quite nice, but yours looks more robust to me and is also very simple. I like the knit/slip stitch a lot. The video was great and very helpful, too!

  26. Kathryn says:

    Is it possible to purchase your videos without going through PayPal?

    • Liat Gat says:

      Hi Kathryn –
      We use PayPal to process our payments, but that doesn’t mean that you have to have a PayPal account.
      When you are re-directed to PayPal, on the lower right-hand side, you can click on the option “Don’t have a PayPal Account?” and all you will have to do then is enter your payment information.

  27. Gi says:

    Beautiful socks! :)

  28. Lani says:

    When I tried to play this newest video on my iPad, I got audio, but a black screen on the visual. Anyone have any suggestions? Thanks.

    • Liat Gat says:

      Hi Lani, I just checked it on my iPad and it worked fine for me.

      Can you go to your Safari settings and clear your cookies and data? Also try maybe doing a hard restart on the iPad (hold down the power button and the home button for 10 seconds) and then trying the blog post again.

      We can help you more if that doesn’t work – just shoot me an email and let me know. Thanks!

  29. Sweetdrk1 says:

    I completed my first pair and have started a second pair. I figured out my mistakes the first time around (although they are still super cute) and I can’t wait for my extra long cable to come to I can try two at a time! Woot Woot! I am so very excited!

  30. Pingback: Needle lovers share your work here - Page 74 - CurlyNikki Forums

  31. Jean Mount says:

    I just finished a pair of toe-up, heel flap socks and I love this pattern. You are the GREATEST! Please tell me how to add enough stitches to make this pattern in Size 2 and 1 thread. I know there must be an easy way to do this, but I do not know what it is. Thank you so much. I LOVE THIS PATTERN.

    • Liat Gat says:

      Jean I’m so glad you love the pattern! I do too. :) And I’m working on a fingering-weight version right now – you’ll get the news as soon as it’s ready to go.

  32. Bobbi says:

    I love your worsted sock pattern. My husband does dialysis every day and his feet are always cold. So he loves your socks! I started a pair using your new pattern with the slip stitch heel and I am to the increase for the gusset. I have 14 st on my heel needle and if I increase as written, I don’t have enough stitches. Am I screwing up?

    • Barb says:

      I think I have the same problem, I am using the worsted pattern and double pointed needles, I have 4 x 8 stitches for a total of 32 all around. This is still ok as per instructions: “Repeat Rounds 2-3 until there are 14(16) sts on each needle [28(32) sts total].”

      I make the gusset as instructed on 16 stitches and increase “until I have a total of 36″ on the heel needle(s)”. Okay, and I just found my problem myself after talking through it like this: I got confused between 32 total and 36 on the heel. So I am increasing a total of 20 stitches…got it now!

  33. Regina says:

    Liat, I have learned so much from all of your videos!
    I have printed out the instructions on how to work the heel where you said to go 2 sts past the center and SSK, K1, turn. I’ve called it the “Turning the Heel Formula.” Will I not need this anymore if I use this pattern for the heel?
    I have not started knitting socks yet because I get so confused as to what goes with what – toe up, or heel down, Magic Loop (which is way too fiddly), 2 circulars, Judy’s Magic Cast On, etc. I’m overwhelmed. I don’t want to make a worsted weight sock because I don’t think it would go inside of a shoe. I will wait for your fingering-weight pattern to come out so I can wear my socks. Are people making worsted weight socks and just wearing them inside boots or just in the house?

  34. Regina says:

    Liat, I have learned so much from all of your videos!
    I have printed out the instructions on how to work the heel where you said to go 2 sts past the center and SSK, K1, turn. I’ve called it the “Turning the Heel Formula.” Will I not need this anymore if I use this pattern for the heel?
    I have not started knitting socks yet because I get so confused as to what goes with what – toe up, or heel down, Magic Loop (which is way too fiddly), 2 circulars, Judy’s Magic Cast On, etc. I’m overwhelmed.
    I don’t want to make a worsted weight sock because I don’t think it would go inside of a shoe. I will wait for your fingering-weight pattern to come out so I can wear my socks. Are people making worsted weight socks and just wearing them inside boots or just in the house?

    • Liat Gat says:

      Hi Regina! I usually teach worsted-weight socks because it is nice to learn on a project that goes so fast. Yes, people wear them around the house or in boots. I wear mine to sleep sometimes, or if I’m living in a house without carpets, like I am right now.

      I think if you take my Toe-Up Socks course, a lot of these things will come together for you (including Magic Loop). You don’t have to do the socks two-at-a-time to start off with. I knit the socks with you every step of the way.

      If you decide to use this heel, you will want to print out the pattern that goes with it and follow along with that. But I would do the toe-up socks course first. I know you will do great!

  35. Jessie says:

    Oh thanks so much for this! I’ve made about four pairs of toe up socks and everyone really likes them, but they took me weeks to make. I just didn’t like the heel part and even though people like my socks, I didn’t really like the way the heel looked. This looks very fast, easy and good looking heel! I think I’ll be able to make socks faster and be happy with the results.

  36. Linda in TX says:

    Liat, I am making a pair of socks, 2@time/Magic Loop, and but using Misti Alpaca Sport. I’m using 28 sts on each needle (per sock), and started the gusset, which I took to 27 st either side of the marker per the chart for 56 total sts. That seemed to go OK, really NEAT look, and so EASY! Where I ran into problems was the heel turn and “flap”. Using the 12 st “heel”, I made it through the turn OK, although it’s a little “poochy”. I might add it’s the first time I’ve managed to get the wraps to be consistent on both sides. However, I took the flap to 1 st on the left needle, ready to go to the next sock, but instead of the original 28 st on that needle, I now have 14, half the number I should have. I’m not sure I did things right, since I’m using sport wt (closer to sock wt) yarn, but until I got to the heel turn, I was good. I’ve taken pix, but will only send them, or post them, if you say it’s OK. Sorry to bother you, but I’m afraid to go on, til I get this problem figured out.
    Thanks! I LOVE your tips & videos and the blog is GREAT!

  37. Linda in TX says:

    I’ve posted pix of my holess heels on my Ravelry page.

  38. Jolene Brewer says:

    Thank you so much. I have been using the afterthought heel as I just kept getting holes in the heels trying to make the other kinds of heels. I have very wide feet, (double wide in a theraputic size, probably a 3 or 4 wide in a regular size), with short toes and a high instep. Can’t wait to try this in the finer sock weight. I have trouble getting my feet in my shoes with even that fine of yarn. But the really good store bought diabetic socks cost so much.

  39. Susan says:

    Liat – This is a truly awesome faux-heel-flap! I am soooooooo excited about it. I practiced tonight with worsted weight and it went very smoothly. It’s elegantly simple, beautiful, and versatile as well. I’m stoked and can’t wait to use your technique in fingering weight yarn. (Maybe I can be a test knitter) You’re a gifted teacher. Thank you so much – many blessings…

  40. Linda in TX says:

    Liat, I am doing the toe-up socks 2AT with the heel flap in fingering weight with the Fleegle heel. Unless I’m doing something wrong, row 1 of section 1: turn heel, should be 1 less (33, 35, 37) if you want 14 sts on each end, and 22 sts on the flap. Stitch 34, etc is the 15th st so you are wrapping the 14th st. I’ve done this on 2 prs and it came out the same way each time. Maybe I’ve misread it somehow. Still going on them. Thanks!

  41. claire graham-smith says:

    Help!
    I’m on my second pair of sox from your e-book. I did the worsted weight and they turned out quite well. Now I’m part way through the fingerling weight ones. I realized that the instructions don’t seem to be using the slip stitch heel. I’d like to use this for better wear. I’m just finishing the first sox heel cup and think I should do this soon. Where am I? how do I add this step?

    • Liat Gat says:

      Good question, Claire! If you are doing the fingering socks from the e-book, you won’t be able to add a textured heel, because you’re doing the Fleegle heel. Next week I’ll be coming out with a fingering-weight version of the Faux Heel-Flap sock, and if you use that pattern, you’ll be able to add the slip-stitch heel. I’m sorry to make you wait, but it’s almost ready!

  42. Susan says:

    Can you please give us a formula for faux “heel flap” toe ups we can use with fingering weight yarn? I like to knit mine using 10 stiches/inch.
    Thank you so much.

  43. Susan says:

    Eagerly awaiting your published instructions next week!

  44. Deb krenitsky says:

    Hi Liat,
    Thanks for this video I’ll be making this sock. Hey, I was wondering. I’ve seen numerous sock patterns in my search for knowledge about sock knitting. I have yet to successfully make a pair ;-). I was wondering what is the difference between using a wrap and turn for a short row as opposed to a ssk or k2tog version of short row. Is it just a preferene or is one used instead of the other for a specific reason? Just curious. The wrap and turn itself isn’t necessarily difficult, just seems like more work when the other option seem easier.

    Thanks for your great videos and instruction!

    D

    • Liat Gat says:

      Deb, I’m so glad you are going to try this sock! I know you will do great. I’m always here if you need help.

      As far as the heel-turning options go, I haven’t found any difference between heels that use wrap-and-turns and heels that don’t. My basic toe-up sock pattern doesn’t have wraps, and this one does, mostly because of the type of heel-turn that I based this on.

  45. Barb says:

    I am making the worsted socks from your ebook and wanted to make the heel flap instead of the fleegle heel on the pattern. I am a very new & very inexperienced sock knitter so I’ve been watching your videos and have gotten to the heel flap and I am so excited about that…but I am not sure that I am ending correctly. I had 32 stitches on my heel needle after the gusset increases and turned the heel and still had the 32 stitches but when I finish the heel flap I am ending up with only 12 stitches so I know that I am doing something wrong!! Help!!! :)
    Thank you so much for your videos…they are awesome!!
    Barb

    • Liat Gat says:

      Hm, you should end up with 16 stitches on the heel needle once you finish the heel flap. You’re not too far off, though. Maybe you did a few too many rows? Try it one more time and check the directions carefully as you go. Let me know…

  46. Virginia says:

    I downloaded this pattern but where are instructions for completing the toe from the provisional cast on?

    • Liat Gat says:

      Hi Virginia,

      This pattern doesn’t use a provisional cast-on, so I’m not sure what you’re asking about. What kind of instructions are you looking for?

  47. Nikkoal says:

    Have you by chance come out with the sock/fingering weight version of this yet?

    • Nikkoal says:

      Nevermind! I should have checked the results of my search on your website first. I found it!! Thanks for everything you do!!! You are a huge inspiration!

  48. Mary-Ellen says:

    I love these toe up socks. Usually make the 12 sts faux heel flap. I need a 20 sts heel flap. The 24 sts heel flap is too wide for the worsted weight yarn ; but cannot seem to modify the patterns to get the 20 sts. heel flap. Need help PLEASE!!!!
    Thank You
    Mary-Ellen

  49. Susan Schmitz says:

    Liat thank you so much for this wonderful technique for toe up socks with the faux heel flap. I made one pair with fingering weight and love everything about them, the fit, the look, and the ease in knitting them! I am now knitting another pair, but with a sport or dk weight yarn thinking I could figure out the math. But alas am unable to do so?! Would you be willing to share the formula of this great heel?
    Thank you
    Susan

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