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Anna Makarovna's Socks

What (Else) Would Madame Defarge Knit?
Knitting
April 2013
Fingering / 4 ply (14 wpi) ?
32 stitches and 44 rows = 4 inches in stockinette stitch
US 1½ - 2.5 mm
220 - 328 yards (201 - 300 m)
Women’s S (M, L), to fit US shoe sizes 5-7 (7-9, 9+).

I designed these socks with Anna Makarovna (of War and Peace) in mind. But designing for practicality doesn’t mean they have to be boring or plain: I’ve used a classic Orenburg lace edging, something that our knitter would likely have been familiar with, and I’ve worked it in the classic Orenburg manner—edging first, then picking up the stitches to continue the actual sock. The stitches are picked up so that the lace edging turns down to form a cuff—just enough that it might peek out from under a long skirt. Below the cuff is a bit of sensible ribbing to ensure it stays up, and then it’s just a classic top-down stocking stitch sock with a band-type heel, a gusset, and a wedge toe.

Once the edging is complete and the pick-up done, the socks are as straightforward as possible—and indeed, would be well-suited to work using the two-in-one method. I like to imagine that’s exactly what Miss M. would have done, so she still gets the dramatic finish and subsequent accolades for her “secret process.”

This pattern uses my favorite un-pointy no-graft toe technique.

MATERIALS
Schoeller + Stahl Fortissima Socka 100 (75% superwash wool, 25% nylon; 460 yds / 420m per 100g ball, 14 wpi), Color #2056; 1 ball

Any light fingering weight yarn could be substituted. I recommend a wool and nylon blend to ensure the socks wear well. The smallest size requires approximately 220 yds / 200m of yarn, the largest size less than 328 yds / 300m.

US #1.5 / 2.5mm needles, or size needed to obtain gauge, for working in the round: double-points, long circular for magic loop or 2 shorter circulars as you prefer

Yarn needle
Stitch marker if working with two circulars or magic loop