Julia Socks by Emily Johnson

Julia Socks

Fingering (14 wpi) ?
17 stitches and 20 rows = 2 inches
in Stockinette
US 1 - 2.25 mm
300 - 350 yards (274 - 320 m)
Flag of English English
This pattern is available from familytrunkproject.com for $4.50.

Julia is a striking twisted-stitch sock pattern named for the glamorously androgynous Julia Standing, a character in Sarah Waters’s 2006 novel The Night Watch. Like Julia herself, making her way through London in and around the Second World War, these socks are handsomely understated, yet somehow sexy: capable of being worn with distinction by people of any gender as they relax in front of a fire in a small flat, sipping a glass of black-market Pinot, listening to the latest broadcast over the wireless, and feeling profoundly grateful that the War is over.

The Julia Socks feature a standard cuff-down construction, with a gusset heel and a flat toe. The diamond patterns within the twisted rib are formed by an unusual Japanese stitch which, for lack of a more authoritative name, I’ve called a “pull stitch”: simple to execute once you’ve got the hang of it, it is worked over three stitches and involves pulling the third stitch on the left needle over the other two, then replacing it in the structure of the fabric with a yarn-over. Full instructions on how and where to execute “pull stitches” are found in the directions for Julia. Because “pull stitches” are worked on a background of 1X1 twisted-stitch ribbing, Julia features a seamless transition between the cuff and patterned leg/instep of the sock. So too, the heel flap includes a continuation of the diamond-motif down the back of the foot.

Because the twisted-stitch diamond pattern is so textural and multi-directional, Julia shows off semi-solid and slightly-variegated hand-dyed yarns nicely, but the pattern also provides enough inherent interest to be worked in a solid color. Featuring an 80-stitch cast-on, it could easily be adapted for male knitters and wearers (or anyone with larger feet) by working in a slightly larger gauge.

Please note: The Julia pattern is written for double-pointed needles and requires some rearranging of stitches among needles. There are currently detailed line-by-line instructions, but no chart.

This pattern is available individually and as part of the Accessories Collection.