Monday, February 1, 2010

Tutorial: Hung hem on the Circular Sock Knitting Machine

I was busy on my Creelman Brothers sock knitting machine today. I have some folks who have ordered socks, to be delivered at the upcoming Estrella War SCA event. The ones in the picture are of a wool/bamboo/nylon blend, which is really warm and soft to the touch. I have a pair out of the same brand of yarn, and they are one of my favorites.

While I was working on them, it occurred to me that I haven't posted the tutorial on how to hang a hem for the top of the sock. So I grabbed my camera, and snapped some shots as I was working. Here's what I did today...

To make a Hung Hem:

Cast on, then knit a bit of waste yarn and set the tension. Then knit about 20 rows in your sock yarn, depending on how wide you want the cuff to be. Stop the yarn carrier at the right hand hash mark.

Take the weight off the sock, to release tension for the following steps. It makes things much easier.

Count over 4 needles beyond the hash mark, so you are just clear of the yarn carrier. (I sometimes go 5 needles over.) Raise that needle up just slightly, so you can see it easily. I've learned not to raise it so far that the stitch drops below the latch of the needle though--it is too easy to drop a stitch that way.

Follow the line of stitching down from your chosen needle, to the bar at the bottom. Stick your hook into that bar...

...and lift it up and over the needle. Now there are two stitches on the same needle.

Continue around the circle, hooking each successive stitch over the needles. This has the effect of folding the knitting in half.

When you get almost all the way around the circle, you will run out of needles in the upright position. Grab the completed knitting and hold it down firmly while you crank forward just enough to raise those needles. Then finish hanging the yarn on the needles, until every needle has two stitches on it.

Re-hang the weights.

Slowly and evenly, crank around the circle. The two stitches knit as one, and the cuff is completed. Continue on with the sock.

This is how the finished hem looks.


  1. Wow, I would love a CSM. I always thought that my husband would enjoy the mechanics of it, too. I just haven't learned enough about buying and/or refurbishing one. I hope I'm one of the lucky people that finds one at a garage sale someday....

  2. I wanted one for years before I bit the bullet and just ordered one off of Ebay. If I had the money, I would have gotten one of the new or professionally refurbished ones. But I got lucky--the one I had had been knitting as recently as a handful of years ago. I needed to de-rust it, get a new yarn carrier, and replace the needles. After that, it was all just learning curve.

    If you find one, grab it! They're great fun. :)

  3. Is it possible to do this in rib? I'm at the , earning stage and found this very interesting- am off to try it now . Thanks for posting

  4. Lol, that should say learning not earning!!