This free pattern was designed exclusively for Canadian Living for Canada's 150th anniversary by local yarn and knitting company Americo Original.
Celebrate Canada in style by knitting up a pair of these patriotic reading socks in luxurious alpaca, llama and sheep's wool.
Knit, purl, picking up stitches, knitting in the round, decreasing, grafting, short rows, duplicate stitch
- 1 skein of Americo Eco Alpaca DK (100% Superfine Alpaca) 100g / 262 yards (240 m) Colour ZH70
- 1 skein of Americo Eco Alpaca DK (100% Superfine Alpaca) 100g / 262 yards (240 m) Colour ZH24
- 3 skeins of Americo Aran (50% Llama / 50% Wool) 100 g /109 yards (100 m) Colour 43
- 1 skein of Americo Aran (50% Llama / 50% Wool) 100 g /109 yards (100 m) Colour 75
- 5.5 mm (US 9) set of 4 or 5 double-pointed Needles
- Yarn needle and crochet hook
- Stitch holder
15 stitches and 18 rows = 4 inches (10 cm) in stocking stitch using 5.5 mm (US 9) size needles or size needed to achieve gauge.
Abbreviations and Terminology
- K, k: Knit
- P, p: Purl
- Rib: Ribbed, ribbing – a pattern stitch – has vertical columns of knit and purl stitches, side by side, with elastic properties. Examples: (K1, P1) aka 1 x 1 ribbing; (K2, P2) aka 2 x 2 ribbing etc.
- k2t (slant to R): Knit 2 together - Insert the needle into the front of the 2 knit stitches from left to right. Draw the yarn through to the front knitwise, and drop both stitches from the needle.
- p2t (slant to R): Purl 2 together - Insert the R needle into the front of the next 2 stitches, from R to L. Draw yarn through both stitches purlwise and drop these stitches from the needle.
- ssk (slant to L): Slip-Slip-Knit - Slip 2 stitches knit wise onto the R needle. Insert L needle into the front of both slipped stitches and draw yarn through to the front. Drop both stitches from the needle.
- dpn(s): Double pointed needle(s) - A needle with points at both ends; used in sets or used singly or in sets or 4 or 5, for knitting in the round; also used for working narrow pieces of knitting, or for cable patterns.
Hold the needles parallel with the purl sides facing each other and the needle tips pointing in the same direction. Thread a tapestry needle with a tail of yarn long enough to get across the entire row of stitches that are being grafted. Before you begin grafting you need to do two actions to set up for the technique one time only.
First: Insert the tapestry needle into the first stitch on the needle closest to you as if to purl it and pull the yarn through leaving the stitch on the needle.
Second: Insert the needle into the first stitch on the back needle as if to knit the stitch. Leave the stitch on the needle and pull your yarn through. Now you are ready to follow the 4-step technique called grafting:
Step 1: Insert the tapestry needle into the first stitch on the front needle knitwise, and slip the stitch off the needle.
Step 2: Insert the needle into the next stitch on the front needle purlwise and leave it on the needle. Pull the length of yarn through gently.
Step 3: Insert needle into the first stitch on the back needle purlwise, and slip it off the end of the needle.
Step 4: Insert the tapestry needle into the next stitch on the back needle knitwise and leave it on the needle. Pull the length of yarn through gently. Repeat these four steps for a few inches / cm. End at the end of your steps so you know where to start up again. Use a crochet hook to adjust the tension of the yarn you have been weaving through the stitches to match your gauge. Continue to end.
Tip: I find an easy way to remember what I am doing after the initial set up row is to say over and over: Knit 1 slip it off, purl 1 leave it on, purl 1-slip it off, knit 1 leave it on. Eventually you just remember what you are doing.
Circumference S (M, L) 7 (8, 9) inches
We have knit this pattern using 2 strands of yarn at the same time. If substituting yarn, the pattern takes 3 skeins of a Heavy Worsted for the Main Colour (MC) and 1 skein in a Contrast Colour (CC). For the duplicate stitch maple leaf, a small amount of a DK yarn or worsted weight will work nicely.
Using 1 strand of Aran 43 and 1 strand of Eco Alpaca ZH24 (MC) held together at the same time and a 5.5 mm (US 9) size needles, cast on 40 (44, 48) stitches using an alternating longtail cast on. Arrange stitches as evenly as possible on 3 DPN's. Place marker and join, being careful not to twist the stitches.
Round 1: (K2, p2) to end
Repeat this round until 8 rounds are complete
Next Round: Change to Eco Alpaca ZH70 and Aran 75(CC) and (K2, p2) to end
Next Round: Pick up 1 stitch below the 1st stitch and k2t with the first stitch on the needle; pattern to end of round. Next Round: K2, p2
Next Round: Changing back to the MC's and pick up 1 stitch below the 1st stitch and k2t with the first stitch on the needle; pattern to end of round.
Work 3 more rounds of ribbing.
Next Round: [K3 (3, 4) k2t] 8 times, knit to end
Note- only medium size will have stitches remaining after the 8 decreases. [32 (36, 40) stitches remaining]
Continue in stocking stitch until sock is desired length for calf. The minimum amount of rows needed to accommodate the maple leaf will be 30 from the ribbing.
Knit across 8 (9, 10) stitches. Turn work and purl across 16 (18, 20) stitches. Place remaining stitches on spare needle or holder to work later for instep. Work back and forth on heel stitches as follows:
Row 1(RS): (Slip 1 purlwise with yarn in back, k1) to end of row Row 2: Slip 1 purlwise with yarn in front, purl to end of row Repeat these 2 rows 6 (7, 8) more times.
Row 1: Slip 1, knit 10 (11, 12) stitches, ssk, k1, turn work
Row 2: Slip 1, purl 5, p2t, p1, turn
Row 3: Slip 1, knit to 1 stitch before the gap, ssk (1 stitch from each side of the gap), k1, turn
Row 4: Slip 1, purl to 1 stitch before the gap, p2t (1 stitch from each side of the gap), p1, turn
Repeat Rows 3 & 4 until all the heel stitches have been worked, ending with a wrong side row. There will be 10 (12, 12) stitches remaining. Not all sizes will end with a p2t, p1.
Place Instep stitches from the stitch holder back onto a DPN.
Next Row (Needle 1): Slip 1, knit across heel stitches, pick up and knit 8 (9, 10) stitches along selvedge edge of heel flap, k1 stitch from the needle holding the instep stitches; with a new needle, knit to last stitch of the instep stitches; (Needle 2); with a third needle knit the last instep stitch and pick up and knit 8 (9 10) stitches along the other side of the heel, and knit across the first 5 (6, 6) heel stitches on Needle 1 [42 (48, 52) stitches remain]
Round now begins at centre back heel.
Round 1: Knit to the last 2 stitches on Needle 1, k2t; knit stitches of Needle 2; ssk, knit to end of round on Needle 3
Round 2: Knit
Repeat these 2 rounds until 32 (36, 40) stitches remain.
Continue in stocking stitch until work from back of heel measures approximately 2 inches (5.5) cm less then total desired foot length.
Change to CC's and work 4 (2, 2) rounds in stocking stitch. Round 1: Needle 1 - knit to last 2 stitches, k2t; Needle 2 - ssk, knit to last 2 stitches, k2t; Needle 3 - ssk, knit to end (4 stitches decreased)
Repeat these two rounds until 8 stitches remain
K2 stitches from Needle 1 using Needle 3. There will be 4 stitches on two needles. Graft the two sides of the toe together.
Find the centre of the front of the sock and place a stitch marker 2 rows below the ribbing. Keep in mind that the sock was knit from the cuff down and you will be working the duplicate stitch from the bottom up. Because of this, you will be a half stitch off so that you can sew with the knit stitches looping up as opposed to looping down. Count down from this stitch marker for 18 rows - this will be your starting point. Using 1 strand of Aran 75 work the maple leaf pattern as shown in the graph on the next page. Each square in the graph represents 1 stitch to sew over. Do not pull too tightly as you work.
Sew in all loose ends.
Questions about this pattern? Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Americo Original is a Canadian yarn company and online knitting shop with its own line of quality yarns, knitwear patterns and accessories. Americo’s yarns are made exclusively in the Andean highlands of South America, using only natural fibres, including luxurious wool, llama, alpaca, cotton, linen, silk and cashmere. Americo and its in-house design lab are based in Toronto, offering international shipping from its online store: americo.ca/shop.