Noether Easier Heel by Helena Bristow

Noether Easier Heel

August 2010
Fingering (14 wpi) ?
US 0 - 2.0 mm
US 1½ - 2.5 mm
US 2½ - 3.0 mm
300 - 400 yards (274 - 366 m)
Women's XS, S, M, L, XL (Men's M, L)
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This update revises ‘An Easier Heel’ to become perhaps the simplest, most attractive, all-gauges, all-weights sock pattern. I’ve named it after Emmy Noether, renowned German mathematician known for her landmark contributions to abstract algebra and theoretical physics. Also because I’m confident that once you make a pair of socks using this pattern, you’ll want to use ‘no-other’; and because there is ‘no-other’ heel so simple and elegant.

This pattern includes instructions for 5 different sock sizes at 3 different needle gauges, as well as a very simple algebraic formula that will make it simple to remember and re-use this heel in any toe-up pattern you choose.


  • 1 skein Oink Pigments Oink Sock (100g/420yds per skein; 90% Superwash Merino 10% Nylon)
  • 1 circular needle, 32” or longer (40” is best), size 2mm, 2.5mm, or 3mm


  • 2mm needles: Sizes XS (S, M); Foot circumference 6.25 (7.25, 8.25) inches; 9.25 sts per inch
  • 2.5mm needles: Sizes S (M, L); Foot circumference 7.25 (8.25, 9.25) inches; 8.5 sts per inch
  • 3mm needles: Sizes M (L, XL); Foot circumference 8.25 (9.25, 10.25) inches; 7.75 sts per inch


  • Magic Loop
  • Judy’s Magic Cast On, Turkish Cast On, or Figure 8 Cast On
  • Jeny’s Surprisingly Stretchy Bind-Off
  • Toe-up construction


  • For men’s socks, I recommend working size L (men’s M) or XL (men’s L).
  • Gauge is measured on un-stretched, un-blocked swatch. Foot circumference is measured at the widest point, around the ball of the foot.
  • These socks have approximately 1” of negative ease.
  • Use a kitchen scale to divide skein in equal portions prior to starting and you will always have enough yarn for two equal socks.