Tangles Socks by Vikki Bird

Tangles Socks

December 2020
Fingering (14 wpi) ?
32 stitches and 44 rows = 4 inches
in stocking stitch
US 1½ - 2.5 mm
120 - 711 yards (110 - 650 m)
A (B, C, D, E, F, G)
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Does a yarn ever tell you what it wants to be? I made a few swatches in this yarn before it became these lovely ribbed and cabled socks: each time I tried something new, it steered me in the direction of twisted cables, and squishy rib. The sock told me it wanted to an organic heel that grew out of the ribbing. I’m delighted with the direction the yarn steered me in, and I hope you can find a yarn to make this pattern in that is similarly particular!

The Tangles Socks are knitted from the top-down with an all-over 2 x 2 rib and a cable panel. The socks have a modified-Strong heel that appears to grow out of the ribbing – a bonus of the Strong heel is that you don’t have to pick up any stitches. The toe is created with shaping down each side and is gathered at the end – no need for any pesky Kitchener stitch!

The pattern is needle-neutral, so you can knit these socks on your choice of DPNs, short circulars or magic loop.

A (B, C, D, E, F, G)

Finished sock circumferences: 11.5 (14, 16.5, 19, 21.5, 24, 26.5) cm 4.5 (5.5, 6.5, 7.5, 8.5, 9.5, 10.5) in; for the best fit, choose a size that is approximately 2.5 cm (1 in) smaller than your foot circumference. Note that the cable makes this sock slightly snugger than a plain stocking stitch sock, so do not choose a size with more than 2.5 cm (1 in) negative ease.

Leg length to heel: 7.5 (10, 12.5, 15, 18, 20.5, 23) cm 3 (4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9) in.

Foot length is adjustable.

32 sts and 44 rnds = 10 cm (4 in) in stocking stitch worked in the round on 2.5 mm (US 1.5) needles after wet blocking, or size needed to obtain correct tension.

110 (165, 235, 325, 420, 525, 650) m 125 (185, 260, 360, 460, 575, 715) yds of 4-ply weight yarn.

Note that these numbers are for guidance only as the lengths of both the legs and the feet are variable to fit. See pattern notes for further guidance on yarn choice.


  • 2.5 mm (US 1.5) DPNs, set of 5, or
  • 2.5 mm (US 1.5) circular needles at least 80 cm (32 in) in length to work magic loop, or
  • 2.5 mm (US 1.5) circular needle, 22.5 cm (9 in) in length


  • Stitch markers x 7
  • Cable needle

Pattern notes
The instructions are for the smallest size, with larger sizes in parentheses: A (B, C, D, E, F, G).

The socks shown are knitted in Vidalana Shimmer Sock by KnitCrate 4-ply; 365 m (399 yds) per 100 g skein; 70% merino wool, 20% nylon, 10% stellina in the colourway Tangles and size E for a UK women’s size 9.5 foot foot length 27.25 cm (10.75 in). The yarn used for the sample is discontinued; any 4-ply sock yarn will work for this pattern.

I would recommend using a dedicated sock yarn for these socks, either a wool/nylon blend or a high-twist wool yarn.

Pattern edited by Jo Torr.