Since I'm making the pattern for socks for myself from scratch, I try the socks on multiple times during their growth...and for this pair, compare the feel of the first pair to this pair. I wanted the socks to fit somewhat closer but not tightly. The difficulty compared to "textbook" legs, feet, and ankles is that I have some swelling in my lower legs and ankles, but much less in my feet. So I need a wider cuff than foot....how much to reduce the width in that gusset is still up for review, but this pair definitely fits better than the first pair.
Still a little looser at the heel, but fits better around instep. Next pair will reduce 2-4 stitches
below cuff ribbing before making heel flap.
The sock on the left has a smoother join at the gusset but some mistakes in the cuff ribbing. The sock on the right has smoother cuff ribbing but a rougher join at the gusset. Learning goes back and forth between the two socks in the pair. You may be able to see a little of the fullness at the back of the heel on the sock on the right. In that space between the cuff ribbing and the gusset angle is where I'm thinking of taking out a few stitches. Then I won't need to decrease as many in the gusset itself.
And Green One socks, the pair after Blue One, both now have ribbing long enough that it won't easily invert itself through the space between needles.
Yesterday, between supper and choir practice, some of the kids who are in the various youth choirs were hanging out where I was knitting. I was working on the cuff ribbing of one of the Green One socks, but had Blue One with me as well, and was wearing Red One, the very first (and full of errors) pair. Some were more interested than others, including one tiny one who must have been no more than four or five. . Not only was she interested, but she was asking really good questions. Also attracted a woman who had been convinced that socks were far too hard for her, since her one sweater turned out badly. I showed off Red One's mistakes--that clearly left it still wearable as socks--and admitted I'd been scared to attempt socks for decades because I believed they were incredibly difficult. I told her about YarnHarlot's Knitting Rules, the book that--with a little internet video help--got me through my first pair (and I still need it for heel turning--her description is clear enough and brief enough for the most novice or novices...like me.) She kept saying "You make it sound easy" and I kept saying "I was amazed how easy it was, mistakes and all." Maybe she'll try it herself.
I would really like to finish Blue One in the next few days. That would uncrowd my knitting bag (since I'm carrying around the two Blue One socks and the two Green One socks, tiny as they are right now) and besides I've have two pairs of handknit socks to wear, one of which would fit much better than the other. I need at least three pairs of socks to take to A-Kon....and all my store-bought thick socks have holes, besides being so much less than comfortable. (I hate elastic in the ribbed cuffs. I especially hate really tight tops of socks. They make dents in my legs.) I'd really like to have four pair...and in the long run, many more than that. Red One takes two days to dry--I'm wearing that pair twice a week (Wednesdays, when I have voice lesson and choir which means lots of standing, and Sundays, when I'm singing at services and that means lots of standing, too.
I've now acquired some Superwash yarn, but since I don't mind handwashing wool socks, I'll go through the original colors first, while working on the pattern. Naturally both husband and son now want socks (and theirs will be Superwash wool--not trusting them to remember which is which) and I've got two more pair promised elsewhere, one for a friend who needs them to wear over compression stockings (which give no warmth, she says.)