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December 17, 2009



I use the same plain vanilla pattern you are talking about. The guys I knit for love the way the 2x2 rib hugs the leg and doesn't fall down. It is a little boring knitting the leg, but so worth it in the end.


My hubby hates wool and refuses to try home knit socks, so I get to keep them all! I am not a lover of cotton yarn so he is out of luck in the sock department.

Cynthia Landers

Hey Allison,

I use the 2x2 rib as well. I knit for my brother's in law and none of them would wear a sock with any more of a pattern than that!


I have not knitted my husband sock, but I am seriously considering it. He has circulation problems, so I will probably use a 2' 2x2 rib and then stocking stitch for the rest so that it is not tight around is lower leg. I checked out the colors your husband picked and I will be getting some of those.


I don't have a particular sock pattern to suggest but I acknowledge that men might not like the patterns I find fun to knit. I knitted my husband a 2X2 rib and he complains that they are too tight. My son will be getting a stockinette pair for the holiday. We'll see if he actually wears them.

Mary A

My husband would never try a handknit sock, nor would my son.


All the men I know love them! This is good and bad news! Please add me to the list of Yes, please I would love to win this!


For guy knitting - I stick to basics. The Knitting Pure and Simple pattern works out great. Is quicker to knit than using a patterned pattern. No fuss no frills and I choose a yarn that speaks for itself in guy colors. I have knit for guys in, and out of the family and they pretty much say they like simple classic looks - in either solids, no loud stripes (self striping is OK but has to be personality or age appropriate. One guy didn't even want cables in a scarf! Just wanted a plain knit scarf. There is one guy who did say he liked cool colors but masculine cool colors - so he was one who gave me a little to go on. The only other thing is that I choose is a guy friendly yarn where they can machine wash it (I haven't found a hand wash guy yet - I don't knit for married men outside the family where I think a wife will care properly for the item) Guys are willing to dry flat but not hand wash....(no comment)


I'm also a no frills pattern person for the guys

Deborah Fillmer

My go to pattern for men's socks is no pattern at all. I made my husband one pair and he prefers the plain white socks from the store. I know, he is nuts!!


I don't have a go-to pattern, but right now, I'm knitting Diamonds in his shoes (free rav pattern). It's turning out pretty well.
I'm also lining up show-off stranded socks (also a free rav pattern), but they'll have to wait until after christmas now.

Cindy W.

Simple pattern, guy colors that is what they want. Fun pattern and beautiful colors for the ladies.
Cindy W.


I am a guy who not only knits, but also likes to wear the socks I create. I enjoy making lace patterns for others gift socks (like my Mom) but for myself I usually stick with a basic sock recipe sock in a subdued self-patterning yarn. I am planning on trying out the Nutkin pattern for myself as well as a pair of Jaywalker's.

Cyndy C.

Well, until recently my husband said that these socks would be too hot. Now he's changed his mind and wants some for home only. I like a 3x1 rib with the self patterning yarns. They stay up but still show the pattern nicely.


Whenever I want to make some socks for my DH, I check out the pattern collection on ravelry or knitty, and let him choose what he is in the mood for. Generally speaking though, the more cabling there is, the happier he is ;)


So far I have only made worsted weight slipper socks for my husband, in a k2p2 pattern, and he loves them. I'll probably do the same sort of pattern for fingering weight socks when I get a chance, unless I can find something more interesting that he'll like!


I've never made a sock, which is one reason why I'm entering to possibly win some sock yarn! I've got a few patterns lined up (starting very simply) that I want to try that will probably be good for guys though-Just simple, toe-up st st or 2x1 rib, like everyone else is saying.

Nancy N

My husband is convinced that he does not like wool, but he will soon find himself the owner of a pair knit from Stephanie Pearl-McPhee's basic sock recipe, from "Knitting Rules", the book that finally convinced me to try knitting socks.


I've done the 2x2 rib as well as a 3x1 rib (I really like that one better). I do have Thuja from Knitty set aside for a pair of socks for the Man, but I haven't done them yet.


Nancy Bush is the way to go. Her gentleman's socks are interesting enough to stay awake (unlike a rib pattern) and subtle enough to go with any man's gray woredrobe. Rock on!


I'm currently knitting my husband the Earl Grey pattern in plain black yarn. I can't say I recommend it though. I like miles of stockinette sometimes, so that's what I'm doing for my FIL for Christmas, although I think a Garter Rib sock is a nice unisex pattern, and warm!


I've used a few of the patterns in "Knitting Vintage Socks" for guys and they seem to have liked them. I have a friend who loves his Green Mountain Colors Bearfoot socks that I made for him with one of these patterns.


Thuja on produces a nice manly pair of socks, but for men I usually go for plain vanilla stockinette or ribbing, usually in DK on US2's.


I haven't ever made a pair of men's socks since my husband refuses to wear them (too itchy, too hot, etc.).


I usually go with 2x2 rib, or sometimes I do a cuff in 2x2 and switch to 6x2. To change up the ribbing I often use Nancy Bush's "Gentleman's Fancy Sock"

Debbie B

I have not knit a pair of men's socks. It is on my to do list.


I pretty much do the same plain , 72 st. cast on ribbed sock for my hubby, over and over again. He likes them the best out of other styles because they stay up better. I throw a cabled one in there every so often so I don't die of boredom though. lol


I use Nancy Bush's Gentleman socks.. her Vintage sock book has many nice manly patterns... I am currently knitting a pair for my husband..


Being a dood, all the socks I knit are for men (me!). My general rule is "no holes and no beads". I can often swatch a mildly lacy pattern and figure out a way to close up the holes so it is acceptable to me. In general, I'm not afraid of color on my feet, so I mostly do loud fun socks in plain stockinette or 2x2 ribbing (or some variation of that). My go-to pattern is Cat Bordhi's foxglove or riverbed. I love to make socks!

J.T. in missouri

I've only knit one pair, and it took forever b/c he has big feet, and the pattern was the 2X2 rib, which was a bit boring. I did them toe up, from the Ann Budd Interweave Knit tutorial.


I definitely don't have a default pattern - just a few guidelines I follow.

1. Easily adjustable stitch pattern
2. Nothing lacy or feminine
3. Something that won't bore me to tears by the end of a pair since the boyfriend wears a US14. That definitely counts out basic ribbing.

I determined those guidelines after knitting a pair of Charades for the boyfriend which is quite enjoys.


My to go men's pattern is 2x2 ribbing. Once I did go to as fancy as Thuja socks (from Knitty) :-)


I like the Gentleman's Fancy Sock from Knitting Vintage Socks. I've made two pairs for my dad and he loves them in winter. Also the ribbing changes often enough that it keeps my interest.

Lennette Daniels

I use basic ribbing like you for general day-to-day socks but for hiking socks, I use the Bella Mama's Perfect Fit Hiking Socks.


Oh my goodness....I just realized while pondering this question that I have never knit a pair of socks for a man. How can that be? I'll have to remedy that!. However, in general, my go-to pattern is either a 2X2 rib or garter rib.


For guys, always ribbed leg, ribbed insole, plain sole, relatively boring yarn. Sometimes I mix it up a little by using 2x1 rib rather than 2x2. And when I'm feeling really wild and using really boring yarn, I'll throw in a single cable on each side of the leg, in such a way that it splits right at the top of the gusset.
...oh, and lately, I've been using a different color for the toe. He doesn't mind because it's hidden inside the sock. And it means that I don't have to try and graft dark colors!


I don't have a pattern, but am looking for a good one. Keep the comments coming!


My favorite patter for myself and the men I knit for is a simple 1x3 rib.


I have knit several pairs of socks for my roommate, and they've all been plain or a diamond pattern. For the next pair of socks, however, I've talked him into a pair of escalator socks for something a little different.


I just use a standard sock pattern with a 2x2 rib on the leg and down the foot, standard heel and toe. I usually use 64, 68 or 72 stitches depending on the yarn. My husband doesn't like anything but really conservative socks either, but he does like a really long leg.


I knit a pair of men's socks using the Yarn Harlot's sock recipe. They came out a bit too big (I know - I also can't believe I knit more than I had to!) but still wearable and appreciated enough that I keep getting requests for another pair. This time I am thinking about using sport weight yarn and using the formula from "The Knitter's Handy Book of Patterns". But I also have a skein of that Ja Woll Silk waiting in the wings... So hard to decide!


I admit that I have never knit a pair of men's socks! But if I did, I think I'd stick with a simple 2x2 rib, in a nylon blend.

OK, now I'm thinking I've neglected the men in my life by never knitting socks for them. Hmmmm....

Donna Nelson

Nancy Bush, Vintage Socks. Plain Winter Sock for Men. My son and son-in-law love them.


I like to knit socks for my sons using a 6-ply sock yarn. My go to pattern is a 56 stitch, 56 row leg.


No pattern for me yet - my hubby said he didn't think he'd ever wear knit socks. When it started getting colder here, he specifically asked for some! I don't have time to knit them until after the xmas crunch, but I think I might go with these:

Marianne C

I love the lozenge pattern in Nancy Bush's "knitting vintage socks" but but must adjust the beginning of the sock to a very simple rib then begin the pattern and of course it must be done in a lovely grey!

Dawn K-M

I am ashamed to admit that I've never knit socks for my husband. I like to knit fun colors and I don't thik he'd like wearing them much, but maybe in the new year, I'll knit him a pair or two and see what he thinks.


Hubby and son are not the adventurous sort and are pretty conservative. I go the 2x2 route, like you.

BUT! My stepson loves two-colored socks from the old Minerva Yarn pattern I knit the sock body in a color he can wear to work (he teaches EMT students) with the toe and heel in something bright or outrageous.

Carla in MT

I've not really knit socks for men... my hubby says they won't work with his Whites Boots. ;) But, I do have Anne Hanson's Tesserae ( ) in my queue. I have a lt. gray wool/silk Regia that is waiting for this pattern.


Now that I think about it, I've never knit a sock for a man. I imagine that it might be a plain stockinette sock, toe up with a short row heel and some ribbing at the top. Maybe a simple cable pattern somewhere on the leg, depending on the man.


Charade is nice on a men's sock - see my friend's manly Charade at

Otherwise, jazz up 2x2 ribbing by making it 3x1 or something just a teensy big different than 2x2!

Denise Sheaves

I have my own design of socks for men. Standard 2 x 2 ribbing, top down, basic sock, no real pattern. My husband will wear them, which is a plus as I love to knit socks!


I knit my husband a pair of socks for Christmas every year, but so far it's been a different sock each time, and they've always been popular.

So far I've done the Tech Guy Socks:

The Yarn Harlot's Earl Grey Socks:

Joe's Office Socks (a personal favorite of mine):

and this year I'm mid-way through a pair of Oliver Arch Shaped socks:


I knit a 2x2 rib for the cuff then straight stockinette for the leg of the sock. I switch to a smaller needle for the heal and foot for better wearability.


Argyles. I'm still using the bobbins I used for the first pair I knit in the '50s.
Every sock knitter should make a pair of argyles. They're so much fun and rewarding. I hope they make a "fashion" comeback.


I do the same as a lot of others have mentionned... plain, straightforward, simple ribbing, and often ad-libbed!


i've never made socks for men, but I really liked some of the patterns in Knitting Vintage Socks and would probably start there if I felt motivated to make socks for such large feet.


I'm like everyone else. I usually do the
2x2 rib because all the men I know like
simple socks. I have made some patterned
ones for my sons but can't remember now
what they were. Ann Hanson has some sock
patterns just for men.


Man socks can be such a drag! Honestly, I just cast on 72 stitches and knit plain stockinette.


My husband is another 2x22 rib kind of guy, and prefers solid colours, but I sometimes manage to get a subtle multicolour past him, as long as it doesn't stripe when it knits!


I have used ribbing variations as well (3x1, 5x1, 3x2) and if I'm feeling daring I'll do a garter rib variation where I knit a round between each round of ribbing. Not exciting, but the recipients will wear them!


I'm with Abby: Thuja is a great pattern and works up on slightly bigger yarn and needles than your generic fingering weight. I made some for Rudi with Artyarns, which becomes so soft after washing (if a bit fuzzy), and he loves to wear and pet them.


I basically refuse to knit my husband socks (he wears out store bought socks in a matter of weeks)! But if I WERE going to knit him some, I too would make something very simple in a plain 2x2 or 2x3 rib pattern.


I've offered so many times to knit socks for my hubby, but his response is always a definite, "No!" with a hint of fear in his voice. I don't know what he thinks I would knit for him, but, hey, more socks for me!

Dani C.

good ole plain 2x2 rib, but sometimes i mix it up & do twisted rib on the cuff.
malabrigo is one of my very favorite yarns to work with, soooo soft & supple.


I have never made socks for my husband...thank goodness he doesn't want me to as his feet are gi-normous!
If I ever had the occasion to make a pair of men's socks, I would try the Gentlemen's Matrimony sock pattern by Sockbug. (I may even make it for myself sometime:)

Kathryn Sigman

I usually go for Thuja when I make mens socks. I have three boys and my husband, who has BIG feet!


My go-to pattern is Thuja - it's not especially interesting to knit, but it's quick and comfortable.


I have a very plain basic pattern i have worked out as he has wide feet and skinny ankles (quack quack) he just loves his socks!


I like the sock pattern Wheat by Emily Ivy of Yarn Miracle:

Otherwise I like to knit a basic sock pattern.


i've only done one pair of men's socks, the earl grey by stephanie pearl-mcphee.

Kevin Pollard

Most men it seems perfer a basic sock, but makes no sense in some ways as they are not seen. Knitting Vintage Socks by Nancy Bush has some noce patterns for men socks and the patterns are not that loud. Seems times have changed.


I've made at least a dozen pairs of socks for my brother, and he LOVES them. I don't really use a sock pattern for mens socks, just cast on 72 stitches and go from there. I like using the Regia 4-ply that has skinny 1-round stripes, and doing a slip stitch every 9th stitch, on every 12th row or so. This makes a really subtle pattern, like dots, and is a lot more interesting than plain stockinette. I've also used 2x2 ribbing, 3x1 ribbing, and stockinette with an inch or two of ribbing at the top.


The fab hubby likes Cat Bordhi's riverbed construction (in the first pathways book) that then allows the use of various ribbing patterns in Schurch's book like broad ripple or improvising on Nancy Walker's Railroad stitch pattern in "knitting vintage socks!"


I don't normally do anything fancy for the guys either. 64 or 68 stitch cast on with a couple inches of 2x2 ribbing to start then the rest in stockinette. I have knit the Sixth Sense sock pattern for my husband and Thuja for my dad. They were both very well received.


Socks for men? I only knit socks for myself!!!


I find that socks like BFF Socks by Cookie A. are good for men -- the simple cables make them more interesting to knit than plain ribbing, but they're still tame enough and work well with both solid or varied yarn.


I'm only on my third pair of guy socks and they have all been for different men and 2 of the 3 are out of the wildest colors of Socks that Rock, so I don't have a go-to pattern yet. But I am currently using Roger by Anne Hanson and I love how it is turning out!


Well, bummer. This is one I can't answer since there are no men in my life for whom I would knit. Both my father and FIL are deceased and I married a woman instead of the traditional man. :) Lovely sock yarn, though.


I use the Gentleman's Fancy Socks and Schaeffer's Anne yarn (because it's finer than most). I use this pattern for Women with large feet, too!

Pat Martin

My husband has interesting challenges with foot problems so I knit him socks of "sea wool" blend and I use a pattern somewhat similar to Meg Swansen's arch-shaped stockings to give him some extra support on the bottom of the foot and arch.
He loves them but tends to "save" them for a special occasion. He keeps them on the dresser where he sees them every day.


So far my husband is insistent that he wouldn't wear handknit socks. If I wear to knit guy socks, I'd look at Anne Hanson's patterns - she has a good selection that are man-appropriate.


Knitting Vintage Socks by Nancy Bush has beautiful sock patterns for men. My husband likes everything I've knit him from that book.


My go-to pattern to knit for my husband is the same as yours, only without the ribbing on the foot. I can only stand so much ribbing... He does give me my choice of yarn. I can use any I want as long as it's navy blue! (see why I have to power through them as quickly as I can before I get too bored to finish?) Seriously, he does wear and enjoy his handmade navy socks, so it's OK.


I've made my husband the Slipped Stitch Rib pattern from "Sensational Knitted Socks," and also the Hedgerow Pattern by Jane Chochran, which was included in "Knitter's Review." A lot of the simpler patterns in "Sensational" and "More Sensational" are appropriate for men.


I do like the 2x2 rib but have a new fav from Nancy Bush's vintage socks. It is the cuff part only. If memory serves me , it is a3x3 rib for 9 rows then 1 row of purl. Looks sharp and classy.


I like to use a broken rib or garter rib. The rest of the sock is plain vanilla, although my husband is game to wear any socks I knit him. My most recent pair feature skull and crossbones on the leg.


Probably 2x2 rib or the Yarn Harlot's pattern, I think it is Earl Gray. It's a simple sock with a small cable up the side.


You might check out some of Anne Hanson's patterns. She designs socks that are interesting to knit and man friendly.


My favorite patterns for boys/men are found in the many patterns in Charlene Schurch's Sensational Knitted Socks book. I let my two nephews choose their patterns. I have knitted the Baby Cable Rib pattern for my manly nephew 1 and the Garter Rib for manly nephew 2.

Both patterns are easy and Charlene does a great job with the instructions.

Happy Holidays for all

Jennifer D

I use the same non-pattern you do for men's socks. Everything else I've suggested has been shot down as too over the top with the exception of plan stockinette. I make sure to knit plenty of interesting socks for myself to make up for the boring man-socks!


I have never made socks. It is my New Year resolution for 2010. I would like to master circular knitting and make my grandchildren socks for the coming winter.


This is a very good question! I have yet to knit a pair of men's socks, but I've been keeping my eyes opened for good patterns so I'll be ready in advance!

Terri Brinegar

I have not knit a pair of socks for the males in my household, they don't seem interested, but I would probably use a 2x2 ribbing as well.


I've promised socks for my husband, even have the yarn---kind of boring brown....think I'm just going to do a 2 x 2 rib for him. The Yarn Harlot had a pretty cool pattern a year or 2 back, something like Earl Grey sock pattern.....


I make plain jane socks for the DH, with a 2x1 rib. But I get lazy only like sport or worsted weight so it doesn't take forever. And the sons, well, walking out to the mail in the Wal Mart socks, are not sock worthy.


I don't have a go-to pattern for men's socks, I've never knit them!! but for me, if I'm not using a pattern, 64 sts, some 2x2 ribbing and then stockinette all the way.


I agree, 2x2 rib on the leg, straight stockinette for the foot. I've only made two pairs and he prefers cotton yarns. I'm going to try one more time with a cotton/elastic blend and hope he likes that pair!

rasa chambers

My husband does not own a pair of handknit socks...I don't think he would appreciate them. My brother, however, is another story. I am currently knitting him a pair of bright yellow socks and am using the pattern Hayrick Sock by Anne Hanson. An easy knit with nice results.


I often use a 2x2 seeded rib. I do about 2 inches of ribbing, then knit every second row to get a seeded pattern in between the ribs. Adds some visual interest without going to crazy.

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