heels by number

Disclaimer: I have not personally turned each of these heels using the number of stitches indicated, but the numbers should work. If you encounter any problems, I would appreciate being advised by mail to dvmackay@rogers.com 

Note: You can also start turning the heel on a purl row, and many people prefer to do so. I actually do either, depending on the pattern I'm working on. End the heel flap ready to start a wrong side row. Substitute purl for knit, and P2tog for SSK, and vice versa. You will not have the "Sl1, K across" row at the end of the heel.

If your sock is knit using

40 44 48 52 56 60 64 68 72 76 80

stitches,

your heel flap is probably done on 20 22 24 26 28 30 32 34 36 38 40

stitches.

End ready to start a right side row.                      
                       
V heel, aka Half Hankerchief                      
Slip 1, Knit 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19

stitches, SSK, K1, turn.

Slip 1, Purl 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1

stitches, P2tog, P1, turn.

Slip 1, Knit 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2

stitches, SSK, K1, turn.

Slip 1, Purl 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3

stitches, P2tog, P1, turn.

Slip 1, Knit 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4

stitches, SSK, K1, turn.

Contine working one more stitch
until all stitches have been worked.
Slip 1, knit across.
                       
Round heel, aka French heel                      
Slip 1, Knit 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21

stitches, SSK, K1, turn.

Slip 1, Purl 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5

stitches, P2tog, P1, turn.

Slip 1, Knit 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6

stitches, SSK, K1, turn.

Slip 1, Purl 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7

stitches, P2tog, p1, turn.

Slip 1, Knit 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8

stitches, SSK, K1, turn.

Continue working one more stitch
until all stitches have been worked.
Slip 1, knit across.
 

 

 

                     
Rounder heel                  
Slip 1, Knit 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22

stitches, SSK, K1, turn.

Slip 1, Purl 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7

stitches, P2tog, P1, turn.

Slip 1, Knit 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8

stitches, SSK, K1, turn.

Slip 1, Purl 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9

stitches, P2tog, P1, turn.

Slip 1, Knit 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10

stitches, SSK, K1, turn.

Continue working one more stitch
until all stitches have been worked.
Slip 1, knit across.
                     
                       
Square heel, aka Dutch heel                      
Slip 1, Knit 12 13 15 16 17 19 20 21 23 24 25

stitches, SSK, turn.

Slip 1, Purl 6 6 8 8 8 10 10 10 12 12 12

stitches, P2tog, turn.

Slip 1, Knit 6 6 8 8 8 10 10 10 12 12 12

stitches, SSK, turn.

Continue last two rows
until all stitches have been worked.
Slip 1, knit across.
                       
Modified square heel                      
Slip 1, Knit 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21

stitches, SSK, K1, turn.

Slip 1, Purl 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5

stitches, P2tog, P1, turn.

Slip 1, Knit * * 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6

stitches, SSK, K1, turn.

Slip 1, Purl     7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7

stitches, P2tog, P1, turn.

Slip 1, Knit     * * * 8 8 8 8 8 8

stitches, SSK, K1, turn.

Slip 1, Purl           9 9 9 9 9 9

stitches, P2tog, P1, turn.

Slip 1, Knit           * * * 10 10 10

stitches, SSK, K1, turn.

Slip 1, Purl                 11 11 11

stitches, P2tog, P1, turn.

Slip 1, Knit                 * * 12

stitches, SSK, K1, turn.

* Once you reach the *,
continue as for the square heel.
 

 

 

 

 
Band heel, aka German Strap heel                      
Slip 1, Knit 13 15 17 18 20 21 23 24 26 28 30

stitches, K2tog, turn.

Slip 1, Purl 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20

stitches, P2tog, turn.

Slip 1, Knit 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20

stitches, K2tog, turn

Continue last two rows until all
stitches have been worked.
Slip 1, knit across.
                       

The math involved in these heels is not hard once you understand how the heel is shaped:

V heel - work across half the heel flap, decrease, work one stitch and turn; work one stitch, decrease, work one stitch and turn; work to gap, decrease, turn, etc.

Round heel - work across half the heel flap plus two stitches, decrease, work one stitch and turn; work five stitches, decrease, work one stitch and turn; work to gap, decrease,turn, etc.

Rounder heel - work across half the heel flap plus three stitches, decrease, work one stitch and turn; work seven stitches, decrease, work one stitch and turn; work to gap, decrease, turn, etc.

Square heel - work across two-thirds the heel flap, decrease and turn, work one-third of the heel flap, decrease and turn, work to gap, decrease and turn, etc.

Modified square heel - work as for round heel until you reach the corresponding number of stitches required for a square heel, then continue as for a square heel.

Strap heel - work across three-quarters the heel flap, decrease and turn, work one-half of the heel flap, decrease and turn, work to gap, decrease and turn, etc.

Acknowledgements:

I gratefully bow in the direction of Nancy Bush, whose wonderful book Folk Socks - The History & Techniques of Handknitted Footwear introduced me to a variety of ways to turn heels. (Interweave Press, ISBN 0-934026-97-1) There are many more styles of heel shown in her book. If this type of thing interests you, I would heartily recommend that you purchase her book and enjoy.

I also thank the extremely talented Jackie Erickson-Schweitzer for introducing me to the modified square heel. To see more detail about this heel, see Jackie's Errant Ankles Lace Socks. You can see more of Jackie's great designs at HeartStrings FiberArts. She also uses this heel in her Parting Ways Socks.

I must also thank Holly Doyne for patiently taking the time to explain the Band heel for me - twice.