Basic Sock Pattern for American Girl dolls

©Judy Gibson, 1999 -- see Photo Album, showing several variations.
Just Added! (1 Aug 99) Above-the-knee version, source for fine yarns.

[ankle-length socks showing foot shaping] The doll's legs are thick and her feet are wide and flat, and have a very square toe. Therefore, the heel flap is proportionally shorter than it would be for a human foot, and the toe shaping is more abrupt. Also, the leg has more stitches (32) than the foot (28).

These socks in fingering weight yarn are a bit bulky, but will fit into the shoes that have wide tongue openings and laces (Josefina's moccasins and Addy's high tops) but not into the less adjustable shoes (Molly's patent leathers with strap). The laceweight socks, though, do fit into Molly's party shoes.

To reduce the thickness of the foot portion so that it will fit into a shoe, there is no patterning on the foot. For high-topped shoes, the portion above the ankle that goes into the shoe should also be plain stockinette or some other non-bulky pattern stitch. The foot shaping on all versions of this sock is the same, so will be given first.

Fine yarn (baby/fingering/sock weight) on US size 1 double pointed needles, or a size that gives a gauge of about 8 or 8 1/2 sts/inch. For a thinner sock, a laceweight yarn can be used, on needles that give the same gauge. A good source of very fine yarns in wool and silk, put up in small quantities, is Weaver's Loft. Catalog has things that are not on the website.

Leg: follow instructions for the particular sock you want (below).

Be sure that whatever leg patterning is used, the leg ends with 32 sts at the ankle. Arrange sts on 3 needles so that 16 sts, centered on the back of the heel, are on a single needle, and that this needle is the one you have just finished knitting. The remaining 16 sts are divided on two needles, held for the instep.

Heel flap:
Turn work and, slipping the first stitch as if to purl, purl across heel needle. Turn.
Work the following 2 rows 3 times:
Row 1: Slip first st as if to knit, knit across needle, turn.
Row 2: Slip first st as if to purl, purl across needle, turn.

Turn heel:
Sl 1 st, k8, k2tog, k1, turn.
Sl 1 st, p3, p2tog, p1, turn.
Continue in this manner, slipping the first stitch and working to one st before the gap, working this together with the next st, and working one and turning, until all the heel sts have been worked. 10 sts remain on heel needle, and you have ended with a purl row.

Turn and knit across heel needle, and then pick up and knit 4 sts along edge of heel flap.
Knit across the instep stitches, putting all 16 on a single needle.
On an empty needle, pick up and knit 4 sts along other side of heel flap, then continue knitting 5 sts from the heel needle onto that needle.
Your rounds will now begin at the center of the sole of the foot.

Repeat the following two rounds 3 times:
Rnd 1: knit around plain.
Rnd 2: k to last 2 sts of needle 1 and k2tog; k needle 2; SSK (slip, slip, knit together), k to end of needle 3.

You now have 28 sts in total. Slide one st from each end of the instep needle onto the neighboring needle so that you have 14 instep sts and 14 sole sts.

Foot: Knit in stockinette until foot length from the beginning of the heel turning measures 2 inches.

Toe shaping:
Work one toe decrease round as follows:
Knit to the last 2 sts of ndl 1, SSK; k2tog, knit to last 2 sts of ndl 2, SSK; k2tog, knit to end of ndl 3.

Knit one round.
Work two more toe decrease rounds.
Knit the 4 sts from ndl 1 onto ndl 3.
You have 8 sts remaining on each of two needles. Graft them together (=Kitchener stitch), and fasten off yarn.

[two versions of knee-high socks, in two yarn weights] LEG VARIATIONS

Cast on loosely, 32 sts. Work in k1p1 rib for 1 1/4 inches (ankle length) or 3 inches (knee high). Do 2 rounds plain knit. Follow directions for foot.

Cast on loosely, 36 sts. Work in k1p1 rib for 3/4 inch. Work in stockinette (plain knitting) until leg measures 2 inches. Decrease 1 st each side of back seam. Knit another half inch and decrease again, 1 st each side of back seam. You now have 32 sts. Knit in stockinette until total length is 3 inches. Follow directions for foot.

These are the same as the basic stockinette knee sock, except longer. Work k1p1 rib for 1 1/2 inches, then work in stockinette until leg measures 4 1/2 to 5 inches. Decrease 1 st each side of back seam. Knit another half inch and decrease again, 1 st each side of back seam. You now have 32 sts. Knit in stockinette until total length is 5 1/2 to 6 inches. Follow directions for foot. [Shown in 50/2 silk thread; knit stitches in the rib were twisted to make it more elastic.]

Cast on loosely, 32 sts. Work in k1p1 rib for 3/4 inch. Work in cable pattern until leg is 3 inches long.

Cable patt:
Rnd 1: k2, p2; repeat around sock.
Rnd 2: twist 2 sts, p2; repeat around sock.
Rnds 3 & 4: repeat rnd 1.

[twist sts either by holding the first st to front on cable needle while you knit the second, then knit the one from the cable needle, OR knit second st by reaching behind the work, and leave it on left needle while you knit the first st, then slide both to right needle--it's gymnastic, but possible]

When leg is 3" long, arrange sts so that the 16 sts on the heel needle have a purl st on each end, and you have just finished knitting that needle. Follow directions for foot.

Work like the cabled sock, except use the following lace stitch patt:
Rnd 1: k2, k2tog, yo; repeat around sock.
Rnd 2: k around plain.
Rnd 3: k2, yo, SSK; repeat around sock.
Rnd 4: k around plain.

Copyright notice: Permission is granted for personal, noncommercial use of this pattern, provided that this notice remains with it. This pattern may not be published in any format, including placing a copy on the internet, without permission from Judy Gibson,
1 August, 1999

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Judy Gibson
Descanso, California
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