Stumpy Socks Knitting Pattern

Stumpy Socks Knitting Pattern

Published by Michelle on 3rd Jul 2019

Hands up if you have a LOT of singles skeins of sock yarn that you want to turn into socks but just don’t have time!  Hands up if you’d just like to get them knit up so you can make room for more yarn?  I *think* I have a solution (well, a partial solution ; )) …

Last year I started holding my 4ply sock yarn double to make DK socks and it definitely helped me use up yarn that I loved but wasn’t as enthusiastic about making into 4 ply socks.  I wear DK socks as slippers around the house and I don’t mind putting them in my runners so this really worked for me.  However, I had an idea recently that I could just knit them as 3 inch legs (rather than 6) and they’d be even better as house slippers … you don’t need a slipper half way up your calf … that and it was super hot and while I still needed something on my feet, I didn’t want more leg than necessary!

A selection of handdyed and other sock yarns

Some of you are thinking 'Oh that is a lot', some of you are thinking 'Hold my drink'

Enter  Stumpy socks!  These are really quick to make & super slipper-ish.  Also I think these would be a great alternative to 4ply socks for folk for Christmas/other gifts … less time consuming but very wearable on Christmas morning!

This pattern is a modified version of my Simply the Simplest Sock DK pattern.

Stumpy Socks for the win

Super quick Stumpy Socks in 4 ply held double!

Yarn, Needles & Notions

Yarn: Shown here in a SS2016 Life in the Long Grass Fine Sock colourway (100g ball) but any 4ply sock yarn, held double throughout.  400m should be sufficient up to at least a UK size 8.  Contrast cuffs, heels and toes should make it possible to stretch a single ball to at least a UK Size 10.

Needles: 3.75mm DPNS (or preferred sock needles).

Notions: Scissors/Snips, Darning Needle for ends, stitch marker

Gauge & Finished Size

Gauge: 26 stitches and 32 rounds to 10cm / 4ins measured over stocking stitch  

Finished Sizes: 

To fit foot circumference: 20 (21.522.52425.5) cm / 8 (8.599.510) ins

Finished sock size: 17.5 (192021.522.5) cm / 7 (7.588.59) ins


K: Knit

P: Purl

K2tog: Knit 2 stitches together

P2tog: Purl 2 stitches together

SSK: Slip Slip Knit (a decrease stitch).  Slip the first stitch (next stitch on the left-hand needle) with the right-hand needle as if to knit, slip the second stitch as if to knit, then slide the left-hand needle into the front of both stitches and knit them together.

RS: Right side

WS: Wrong side


Using a loose method (e.g. long-tail method), cast on 44 (48, 52, 56, 60) stitches.

Distribute equally over 4 of the DPNs.  Knit with 5th needle.

Join for working in the round, being careful not to twist.  Place marker to indicate the start of the round.  The first needle in the position after the round marker is referred to as needle 1, the next needle is needle 2 and so on.


Working in 2x2 rib (k2, p2), work until the cuff measures 2.5 cm / 1 ins.  All sizes


Working in stocking stitch (knit every stitch), work until sock measures 7.5 cm / 3 ins from cast-on edge.  All sizes 

Two handknit socks with short legs

3 inches of leg is just plenty

Heel Flap (HF)

HF Row 1 (RS): Knit the next 22 (24, 26, 28, 30) stitches (from needles 1 & 2), turn work.

These stitches will be worked flat to create the heel flap.  The stitches on needles 3 & 4 (instep stitches) remain as they are until required for the gusset.  

HF Row 2 (WS): Slip 1 stitch purlwise (with yarn in front), p 21 (23, 25, 27, 29) stitches (end of heel stitches), turn work.

HF Row 3: Slip 1 stitch purlwise (with yarn in back), k 21 (23, 25, 27, 29) stitches (end of heel stitches), turn work.

Repeat HF Rows 2 & 3 7 (8, 8, 9, 10) more times, then HF Row 2 again.  18 (20, 20, 22, 24) HF rows in total

Heel Turn (HT)

HT Row 1 (RS): K 15 (16, 17, 19, 20) stitches, ssk, turn work.

HT Row 2 (WS): Slip 1 stitch purlwise (yarn in front), p 8 (8, 8, 10, 10) stitches, p2tog, turn work. 1 stitch decreased

HT Row 3: Slip 1 stitch purlwise (yarn in back), k 8 (8, 8, 10, 10) stitches, ssk, turn work. 1 stitch decreased

Repeat HT Rows 2 & 3 4 (5, 6, 6, 7) more times, then HT Row 2 again.  10 (10, 10, 12, 12) stitches remain

Next Row (RS): K 10 (10, 10, 12, 12) remaining stitches (heel stitches) with RS facing.  Do not turn work.


Setup Round:      

1. With RS facing, pick up and k 9 (10, 10, 11, 12) stitches through the slip stitch at the start of each heel flap row.  Pick up 2 additional stitches between the heel and instep stitches (this will prevent the hole that often occurs).

2. Knit 22 (24, 26, 28, 30) stitches on needles 3 & 4 (instep stitches).

3. Pick up and knit 2 stitches between the instep and the heel (matching the other side), then pick up and k 9 (10, 10, 11, 12) stitches through the slip stitch at the start of the heel flap rows. 

4. K 5 (5, 5, 6, 6) stitches from the heel stitches onto needle 1.  Place marker for the new start of the round.

Total stitches in the round: 54 (58, 60, 66, 70) stitches

Note: Following the change in round marker position, needle 1 is the needle before the marker and needle 2 is the needle after it.  The marker has moved, but not the number of the needles.

Gusset Round 1: Knit all stitches to end of round (for first Round 1 only, knit into the back of picked up stitches on both sides of the instep).

Gusset Round 2:          

Knit to 3 stitches before start of instep, k2tog, k1,

knit across instep stitches (keeping the same number on needles 3 & 4), k1, ssk, 

k1, ssk, knit to end of round. 2 stitches decreased

Repeat Gusset Rounds 1 & 2 4 (4, 3, 4, 4) more times until 44 (48, 52, 56, 60) stitches remain.

Upclose of one sock

Mine get a lot of wear (and cat hair apparently ...)

Irish Moss on Top with a Stocking Stitch Sole ... a bit like me perhaps!


Working in stocking stitch (knit every stitch), work until foot measures 4 (4, 5, 5, 5) cm / 1.5 (1.5, 2, 2, 2) ins less than the desired finished length.


Toe Round 1: Knit to 3 stitches before the instep, k2tog, k2, ssk, knit to 3 stitches before end of instep, k2tog, k2, ssk, knit to end of round.  4 stitches decreased

Toe Round 2: Knit all stitches to end of round.

Repeat Toe Rounds 1 & 2 4 (4, 5, 5, 6) more times until 24 (28, 28, 32, 32) stitches remain.

Repeat Toe Round 1 2 (3, 3, 4, 4) more times until 16 stitches remain. 

Toe Graft

  1. Knit the stitches remaining on needle 2 onto needle 1.
  2. Move the stitches remaining on needle 3 onto needle 4 (instep stitches). 
  3. Graft heel stitches to instep stitches using Kitchener Stitch.  

Finishing & Care

Sew in ends using the yarn needle, block, wear, look fab!  Perhaps post a pic on Instagram, tagging us @loveliestyarnco & using hashtags #tlyclovelies & #loveliestyarnco, & share on Ravelry!

Follow instructions on ball.

What next?

And that's it, Stumpy Socks!  Also, as well as using up full skeins of 4 ply sock, you could hold various ends of sock yarn skeins together to make all kinds of versions.  I know I have at least one bag of leftover sock yarn!

A bag of yarn ends

Bag of ends? What bag of ends?

Should you need any help with sock knitting, you can find my sock tutorial on YouTube (we love Subscribers ; )) You can find my other sock patterns on Ravelry.  Should you not fancy holding 4 ply yarn double, Socks Yeah DK works really well with this pattern.  I would love to see finished versions of these so if you are sharing them, please tag me!

Now, onto some more Stumpy sock knitting!

Happy (sock) knitting,


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