Flap and gusset heel pattern for toe-up socks

When I first began making toe up socks the hardest part for me was to figure out when to start making the heel. The math itself is not difficult but still it takes some time. I have saved you some trouble and I made this simple pattern which gives you the instructions how to make a flap and gusset heel for your toe up sock. This recipe works for any yarn and gauge and it requires no picking up of stitches. All you need to know is the total amount of stitches you have per sock and your row gauge and you’ll get detailed instructions how to make the heel.

On knitgrammer.com you can find also patterns for afterthought heel (toe up or cuff down)short row heel (toe up or cuff down) and french heel for cuff down socks.

Gusset heel pattern for toe up socks

 sts on my needles  rows / 4” (10cm).

This pattern is written for magic loop method.

Gusset increases

You should now have a total of 56 sts divided evenly on two needles. From toe up knit until your work measures 4’’ [10 cm] less than desired length. Start the gusset increases.


Needle 1: k all

Needle 2: m1r, k to end, m1l


Needle 1: k all

Needle 2: k all

Repeat rounds 1 and 2 11 more times. 24 sts increased on needle 2.


You have now 12 gusset sts on each end of needle 2 and 30 sts in the middle. A total of 54 sts on needle 2. While working the short rows the gusset sts are on hold.

Short row shaping

K until you are at the beginning of needle 2. The following rows 1-3 are worked on needle 2 only. 

Row 1 (RS): k until 12 sts remain, turn.

Row 2 (WS): mds, p until 12 sts remain, turn.

Row 3 (RS): mds, k to double st, turn.

Row 4 (WS): mds, p to double st, turn.

Repeat rows 3 & 4 until the last row you worked was mds, k 10. Do not turn your work.

On needle 2 you should now have 12 gusset sts, 10 double sts, 10 regular sts on the right needle and 10 double sts and 12 gusset sts on the left needle.

Heel flap

K to last double sts, ssk, turn (k together through the back loop the last double sts with the first gusset st on hold.) Please note that double sts are knitted and purled through both legs.

Row 1 (WS): sl1, p to last double st, p2tog, turn

Row 2 (RS): sl1, k to slipped st, ssk, turn

Row 3 (WS): sl1, p to slipped st, p2tog, turn

Repeat rows 2 & 3 until you have one gusset st left at each end of the needle 2 (a total of 28 sts left on needle 2).

Round 3 (RS): sl1, k to slipped st, ssk, continue working in the round and k all sts on Needle 1, k2tog the first two sts on Needle 2, k to end of Needle 2.

You should have a total of 56 sts (28 sts on each needle).

The heel is now finished. Continue working in the round. 


k = knit

m1l = make one left = from back lift up the thread between two stitches with left needle and knit that stitch in front loop. Great tutorial here.

m1r = make one right = from front lift up the thread between two stitches with left needle and knit that stitch in the back loop. Great tutorial here.

mds = make double stitch = Slip 1 stitch
purlwise with yarn in front. Bring yarn up,
over and back to pull on the slipped stitch
until it slides around to show two legs. If you are unfamiliar with the technique see a great tutorial with images here.

p = purl

p2tog = purl two stitches together

rs = right side

sl = slip stitch purlwise

ssk = Slip, slip, knit = slip 1 stitch knitwise, slip another stitch knitwise, then slide the left-hand needle into the front part of both stitches and knit them together

st = stitch

ws = wrong side

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6 Responses

  1. Carmen says:

    Thank you for providing this recipe. I’ve been looking for something just like this forever. My socks turned out great!


    I just want to clarify since I tend to be more of visual learner: When I get to the beginning of short row shaping on needle two, do I drop needle one for the time being and use a third circular needle with needle two until I get to the 3rd row RS of the heel flap to rejoin needle two to needle one ?


  3. I love your recipe, I am so excited to learn “about you”. Learning from a younger person is important to me, your instruction is great. Please share more of your knowlege, I love to learn. Stay safe in Finland <3

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