I’ve been trying to find the right pattern for my brother-in-laws Christmas present, which is to be a pair of socks. I wanted something simple, un-fussy and yet a little something ‘more’ than a plain stockinette sock. My brother in law will not wear bright, outlandish colours, busy designs or complex twisting cables, but as these are a Christmas gift I wanted to include something that was a little ‘fun’. I believe these will be the first hand-knit socks my brother-in-law will have ever received – the hat I made him last year seemed to be his first hand-knit gift of any sort, so I thought I’d try and incorporate a little christmas tree in the design for these. I made a rough graphical sketch of my idea for the simple pine tree shape which I thought I might be able to replicate in some fashion with the use of single cable stitches and raised knit stitches on a reverse stockinette stitch background. once the ‘trunk’ of the tree is about 1½” long I am going to knit six or eight rows of garter stitch for something for the tree to ‘stand’ on, and then do the foot of the sock in stockinette. I keep switching between loving these socks and then finding them horrid, but it is happening every few minutes, and I can’t actually tell what it is that I am finding disagreeable about them. I suppose I am nervous that they will not fit, but as my brother-in-law resides at the other end of the country, and these are meant for a surprise, there is little chance of my furtively sneaking in to try them on his feet without him noticing.
Below is a picture of the chart of the stylised Christmas tree I designed to knit into Edward’s socks. There are four sections to the chart; the set up round, the ‘branches’, the ‘tree trunk’ and the ‘ground’ The chart is worked across 12 stitches and can be adapted in height by altering the number of repeats you knit for the branches, trunk and ground.
- Start by knitting round 1 of the chart just once (this is the set-up round).
- Knit rounds 2-7 as many times as you wish to have layers of branches (I have chosen to do six rounds of branches for the tall trees of Edward’s Socks).
- Knit round eight as many times as you wish until the ‘trunk’ of the tree is the length you desire.
- Knit rows 9-11 three or four times to give an indication of the ground.
It is worth baring in mind that this chart was designed in the round for the pair of top-down socks that I am knitting, so if you are knitting socks from the toe up, or something else that is knitted from the base upwards, this tree will be upside down. I believe that you may be able to simply turn the chart upside-down and successfully knit it that way, but I haven’t actually tested this so don’t hold me to account if I am mistaken. I’d give it a quick swatch but I only have my needles with the socks on at the moment and no spares, but if anyone gives it a go before I am able to do so myself please drop me a line and I’ll post the results.
UPDATE: a couple of kind knitters have confirmed that flipping the chart upside down and knitting it that way works perfectly. Many thanks to those knitters willing to experiment!