(19)
(11)EP 3 348 689 A1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT APPLICATION

(43)Date of publication:
18.07.2018 Bulletin 2018/29

(21)Application number: 17210452.3

(22)Date of filing:  22.12.2017
(51)International Patent Classification (IPC): 
D04B 1/26(2006.01)
(84)Designated Contracting States:
AL AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MK MT NL NO PL PT RO RS SE SI SK SM TR
Designated Extension States:
BA ME
Designated Validation States:
MA MD TN

(30)Priority: 12.01.2017 JP 2017003501

(71)Applicant: Knitido Co., Ltd.
Kainan-shi, Wakayama 649-0121 (JP)

(72)Inventor:
  • IDOBATA, Yasuhiro
    Kainan-shi Wakayama 649-0121 (JP)

(74)Representative: White, Duncan Rohan 
Marks & Clerk LLP Fletcher House (2nd Floor) Heatley Road The Oxford Science Park
Oxford OX4 4GE
Oxford OX4 4GE (GB)

  


(54)FOOT COVER KNITTING METHOD AND FOOT COVER


(57) A method of knitting a foot cover (100) causes a knitting machine to insert or plate rubber yarn into the periphery of a wearing opening of a foot cover with the wearing opening being open to a top of the foot. The method includes steps of knitting the foot portion (2) so that a yarn feed direction is switched back at opposite ends of the needle row of the edged-ring portion, and thereby reducing one or more knitting needles fed with yarn at the end of the edged-ring-shaped needle row every time the yarn feed direction is switched, while adding one or more knitting needles fed with yarn to a transition portion on a laterally identical side of the edged-ring-shaped needle row every time of one reciprocation of feeding yarn to the edged-ring-shaped needle row.




Description

Field of the Invention



[0001] The present invention relates to foot covers worn so as to be hidden in pumps or sneakers and, in particular, to foot covers that each include a wide wearing opening extending from the heel to the front end of the top of the foot.

Description of the Related Art



[0002] Conventionally, in a case where a foot cover that includes a wide wearing opening extending from a heel portion to the front end of the top of the foot is knit using a flat knitting machine, the foot cover is knit by what is called C-shaped knitting, for example. As described in Japanese Patent Laid-Open NO. 9-59803, the C-shaped knitting knits a five-barrel portion adjacent to the toe side of the wearing opening ("toe-side top portion" in Japanese Patent Laid-Open NO. 9-59803) in a rounded manner, then takes off loops of the top-side center portions of the five-barrel portions from knitting needles, and knits subsequent to loops engaged on other needles the foot with switching back the yarn feed direction at the opposite ends of the course direction.

[0003] Unfortunately, according to knitting of the wearing opening by the knitting method as in Japanese Patent Laid-Open NO. 9-59803, only the rear periphery of the wearing opening is engaged on the needles after completion of the wearing opening. Thus, the periphery of the wearing opening cannot be knit in a rounded manner. Consequently, a problem occurs in that rubber yarn cannot be inserted or knitted into the periphery of the wearing opening.

[0004] Accordingly, as for the foot cover in Japanese Patent Laid-Open NO. 9-59803, after completion of knitting of the foot cover, polyurethane tape having a narrow width is unavoidably caused to adhere to the periphery of the wearing opening ("opening portion" in Japanese Patent Laid-Open NO. 9-59803) during linking for preventing fray to supply a contraction force to the periphery of the wearing opening.

[0005] However, the knitting method in Japanese Patent Laid-Open NO. 9-59803 has a problem in that the manufacturing cost is high because the linking operation requires time and effort.

[0006] The present invention has been made in view of the above problem, and has an object to provide a method of knitting a peripheral portion of a wide wearing opening extending from a foot portion to a heel portion in a rounded manner using a flat knitting machine, and a foot cover that includes a rounded knitting structure at the periphery of the wide wearing opening.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION



[0007] The invention, which has been made to solve the above problem, is a foot cover knitting method of knitting a foot cover using a flat knitting machine that includes front and rear needle beds capable of relatively racking in a lateral direction and is capable of transfer between knitting needles on the front and rear needle beds, the foot cover including: a toe portion on a front end side; a heel portion on a rear end side; a foot portion between the toe portion and the heel portion; and a wearing opening that opens from the foot portion to the heel portion at the top side, the toe portion including a five-barrel portion knitted in a rounded manner at its rear edge from a top side to a sole side, the heel portion including one or more gore lines on each of opposite sides.

[0008] The knitting method of the present invention includes: a five-barrel portion knitting step of feeding knitting yarn to the knitting needles on the front and rear needle beds in a rounded manner to knit the five-barrel portion; a foot portion knitting step of, subsequent to the five-barrel portion knitting step, feeding yarn to an edged-ring-shaped needle row on which loops of an edged-ring portion on a last course of the five-barrel portion except a top-side center portion are engaged, in a state where loops on a last course of the five-barrel portion are engaged on the knitting needles of the front and rear needle beds in a rounded manner, and subsequently knitting the foot portion so that a yarn feed direction is switched back at opposite ends of the edged-ring-shaped needle row, while reducing one or more knitting needles fed with yarn at the end of the edged-ring-shaped needle row every time the yarn feed direction is switched, and while adding one or more knitting needles fed with yarn to a transition portion on a laterally identical side of the edged-ring-shaped needle row every time of one reciprocation of feeding yarn to the edged-ring-shaped needle row; a heel portion knitting step of, subsequent to the foot portion knitting step, knitting the heel portion while providing one or more gore lines on the opposite ends; and a wearing opening peripheral portion knitting step of, subsequent to the heel portion knitting step, feeding knitting yarn in a rounded manner to knitting needles on which the loop is left engaged on the knitting needles to knit the wearing opening peripheral portion.

[0009] Here, the "edged-ring" shape is a C-shape as indicated by chain lines in FIG. 15A and FIG. 15B, a J-shape (encompassing an inverted J-shape) in FIG. 16A and FIG.16B, or a U-shape in FIG. 17A and FIG.17B. The "end of the edged-ring-shaped needle row" is a knitting needle f on the front needle bed F (hereinafter called in a manner such as of "front knitting needle f") and the front knitting needle w on the C-shaped needle row in FIG. 15A, for example. On the J-shaped needle row in FIG. 16A and FIG. 16B, the edge is the rear knitting needle a and the front knitting needle ac. On the U-shaped needle row in FIG. 17A and FIG. 17B, the edge is the front knitting needle a and the rear knitting needle a. In a case where the transition portion is on only one of the lateral sides of the edged-ring-shaped needle row for feeding yarn, the "transition portion on a laterally identical side" is one transition portion.

[0010] As described above, according to the present invention, in the foot portion knitting step, in a state where the loop on the last course of the five-barrel portion is engaged in a rounded manner on the knitting needles of the front and rear needle beds, yarn is started to be fed in an engaged-ring-shaped manner to the knitting needles on which the loop of the edged-ring portion except the top-side center portion on the last course of the five-barrel portion is engaged. Consequently, the loops at the top-side center portion that are not to be connected to the foot portion of the five-barrel portion can be left engaged on the knitting needles. The foot portion knitting step performs knitting so as to reduce gradually the number of knitting needles for yarn feeding, from the opposite ends of the edged-ring-shaped needle row every time the yarn feed direction is switched back. Consequently, every loop on the opposite ends on each course of the foot portion can be left engaged on the knitting needle. Therefore, during knitting of the wearing opening peripheral portion, the loops of the top-side center portion of the five-barrel portion and the loops on the opposite ends of the foot portion are in a state of being engaged on the knitting needles on the front and rear needle beds. Consequently, the wearing opening peripheral portion can be knitted in a rounded manner consecutively subsequent to these loops.

[0011] As described above, addition of one or more knitting needles for feeding yarn to the transition portion on the edged-ring-shaped needle rows for yarn feeding on the front and rear needle beds can compensate the number of stitches reduced by reduction in the number of knitting needles for yarn feeding at the end portion of the edged-ring-shaped needle row, and prevent the foot portion from being low and flat. In this case, addition of the knitting needles for feeding yarn to the transition portions on the laterally identical side can prevent the wearing opening from being widened.

[0012] Providing of the gore lines for the heel portion can arrange the top-side center portion of the five-barrel portion, the opposite end portions of the foot portion in the course direction, and the rear edge of the heel portion along the periphery of the wearing opening, and knit the wearing opening peripheral portion to have a shape along the wearing opening subsequent to such arrangement.

[0013] Preferably, the foot portion knitting step is started in a state where both the opposite ends of the edged-ring-shaped needle row reside one of the needle beds between the front and rear needle beds, and is continued after the opposite ends of the edged-ring-shaped needle row separates to the front and rear needle beds. Accordingly, even in a case where a wide wearing opening is provided for a foot cover whose top side is knitted through the one needle bed and whose sole side is knitted through the other needle bed, as with the foot cover including five toe sacks, the wearing opening peripheral portion can be knitted in a rounded manner.

[0014] Preferably, the method further includes an intermediate rounded portion knitting step of feeding knitting yarn in a rounded manner to all the knitting needles on which the loop remains on the knitting needles, while the yarn is left fed, to knit the intermediate rounded portion, in a middle of the foot portion knitting step, between the foot portion knitting step and the heel portion knitting step, or in a middle of the heel portion knitting step. Accordingly, the loops of the top-side center portion of the five-barrel portion that are left engaged on the knitting needles, and the loops on the opposite ends of the foot portion in the course direction can be taken off from the knitting needles, and these loops can be prevented from being damaged owing to engagement on the knitting needles for a long time.

[0015] Preferably, in the foot portion knitting step, before one or more knitting needles fed with yarn are added to the transition portion, the loop is transferred from the knitting needles adjacent to the knitting needles to be added. Accordingly, the through-hole to occur at the position to which the knitting needle is added can be moved to another position, or can be filled with providing an increase.

[0016] The present invention encompasses a foot cover includes: a toe portion on a front end side; a heel portion on a rear end side; a foot portion between the toe portion and the heel portion; a wearing opening that opens from the foot portion to the heel portion at the top side; and a pair of side lines that are traces where knitting yarn has transitioned over the front and rear needle beds of a flat knitting machine, the toe portion including a five-barrel portion knitted in a rounded manner at its rear edge from a top side to a sole side, the heel portion including one or more gore lines on each of opposite sides, wherein the foot portion is continuous to an edged-ring portion except a top-side center portion of the five-barrel portion, and includes an edged-ring-shaped knitting structure where the knitting yarn is switched back at opposite end portions in a course direction so as not to interfere with the wearing opening, a loop at the opposite end portions is formed in a wale where the more rear a position is at, the more apart the wale is from the wearing opening, and at least one or some of courses has through-holes and/or increases, one of the pair of side lines intersects with opposite end portions of the foot portion in the course direction, the other side line of the pair of the side lines intersects with a rear edge of the foot portion, or the one side line passes through a center of a top side in a lateral direction, and the other side line passes through a center of a sole side in the lateral direction, and the foot cover further comprises a wearing opening peripheral portion where knitting yarn is knitted in a rounded manner at a periphery of the wearing opening. Here, the "course direction" is a direction in which the knitting yarn extends. The "wale" is a row where stitches are arranged perpendicularly to the course direction.

[0017] Preferably, the one of the pair of side lines intersects with one of the opposite ends of the foot portion in the course direction, and the other side line of the pair of the side lines intersects with the rear edge of the foot portion. The foot portion knitting step is started in a state where both the opposite ends of the edged-ring-shaped needle row reside one of the needle beds between the front and rear needle beds, and is continued after separation to the front and rear needle beds, thereby allowing such side lines to be formed. Consequently, the design of the foot cover can be improved.

[0018] Preferably, the through-holes are linearly arranged. Consequently, the design of the foot cover can be improved.

[0019] Preferably, rubber yarn is inserted and/or plated into the wearing opening peripheral portion. Consequently, the foot cover can be prevented from being slipped off.

[0020] Preferably, the foot cover further includes a fastening portion into which rubber yarn is inserted and/or plated, while the heel portion is switched back in the course direction at the right and left gore lines. Consequently, the foot cover can be further prevented from being slipped off.

[0021] As described above, according to the foot cover knitting method of the present invention, the wearing opening peripheral portion can be knitted in the rounded manner using the flat knitting machine even in the case where the foot cover has a wide wearing opening extending from the foot portion to the heel portion at the top side.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS



[0022] 

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a foot cover according to a first embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a plan view of the foot cover shown in FIG. 1 in view from the top side;

FIG. 3 is a bottom view of the foot cover shown in FIG. 1 in view from the bottom side;

FIG. 4 is a schematic diagram of a knitting structure around the end portion in the course direction of a foot portion 2;

FIG. 5 is a schematic diagram showing an example of the knitting structure of increases;

FIG. 6 is a knitting diagram of a five-barrel portion knitting step and a foot portion knitting step of the foot cover according to the first embodiment;

FIG. 7 is a knitting diagram of the foot portion knitting step subsequent to FIG. 6;

FIG. 8 is a knitting diagram of the foot portion knitting step subsequent to FIG. 7;

FIG. 9 is a knitting diagram of the foot portion knitting step subsequent to FIG. 8;

FIG. 10 is a knitting diagram showing a step of knitting the last course of the foot portion and an intermediate rounded portion;

FIG. 11 is a knitting diagram of a bulging lower portion in a heel portion knitting step subsequent to FIG. 10;

FIG. 12 is a knitting diagram of a rubberless portion in the heel portion knitting step subsequent to FIG. 11;

FIG. 13 is a knitting diagram of a fastening portion of the foot cover in the foot portion knitting step subsequent to FIG. 12;

FIG. 14 is a knitting diagram of the fastening portion and a wearing opening peripheral portion subsequent to FIG. 13;

FIG. 15A and 15B are diagrams illustrating situations where knitting yarn is fed so as to form an edged ring (C-shape) in lesser step S201;

FIG. 16A and 16B are diagrams illustrating situations where knitting yarn is fed so as to form an edged ring (J-shape) in lesser step S213;

FIG. 17A and 17B are diagrams illustrating situations where knitting yarn is fed so as to form an edged ring (U-shape);

FIG. 18 is a perspective view of a foot cover according to a second embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 19 is a perspective view of a foot cover according to a third embodiment of the present invention; and

FIG. 20 is a perspective view of a foot cover according to a fourth embodiment of the present invention.


DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS



[0023] Hereinafter, appropriately referring to the diagrams, embodiments of the present invention are described in detail. In the following diagram, the toe side of the foot cover is called a front side, the heel side is called a rear side, the wearing opening side is called an upper side, and the sole side is called a lower side. Note that the present invention is not limited to the following embodiments.

(First embodiment)



[0024] FIG. 1 shows a foot cover 100 according to a first embodiment of the present invention. As shown in FIG. 1, the foot cover 100 includes a toe portion 1, a foot portion 2, a heel portion 3, an intermediate rounded portion 4, a wearing opening 5, and a wearing opening peripheral portion 6. In this embodiment, the heel portion 3 includes only one bulging portion, and the entire heel portion 3 consists of one bulging portion. Consequently, the heel portion 3 is also called the bulging portion 3. The bulging portion 3 includes a bulging lower portion 31, and a bulging upper portion 32. The bulging upper portion 32 includes a rubberless portion 33, and a fastening portion 34.

[0025] The foot cover 100 includes a lateral pair of side lines 71 and 72. In the following description, a range shown in FIG. 2 is called a top side 8, and a range shown in FIG. 3 is called a sole side 9.

[0026] Throughout the entire configuration, the foot cover 100 is kitted such that the face yarn is cotton yarn and the back yarn is single covering yarn (hereinafter also called "SCY") including polyurethane yarn as core yearn, which is covered with nylon yarn or the like. Double covering yarn (hereinafter also called "rubber yarn") that includes urethane yarn as core yearn, which is covered with nylon yarn, polyester yarn or the like, is inserted into the wearing opening peripheral portion 6 and the fastening portion 34. The rubber yarn may be knitted into the wearing opening peripheral portion 6 or the fastening portion 34 in plated stitch.

[0027] As shown in FIG. 1, the toe portion 1 includes a toe container portion 11, and a five-barrel portion 12. The toe container portion 11 includes five toe sacks 11a, 11a,... each knitted in jersey stitch. The five-barrel portion 12 is provided at an end edge on the rear side of the toe portion 1, and is knitted so that knitting yarn can integrally surround five toes from the top to sole of the foot. The five-barrel portion 12 may be knitted continuously directly to the rear side of the toe container portion 11, or knitted indirectly after the toe container portion 11 with intervention of a three-barrel portion (not shown) that integrally surrounds three toes or four-barrel portion (not shown) that integrally surrounds four toes.

[0028] The top-side center portion 12a on the most rear course C1 of the five-barrel portion (symbol 121 in FIG. 1)is knitted with the front side portion 41 of the intermediate rounded portion 4. The foot portion 2 is knitted continuously after the edged-ring portion 12b that are other than the top-side center portion 12a of the most rear course C1 of the five-barrel portion. A yarn feed direction is switched back at the opposite ends 2a and 2a in the course direction in order to provide the wearing opening 5. As shown in FIG. 4, a loop 2b at an end portion 2a of the foot portion 2 in the course direction moves in a direction apart from the wearing opening 5 by one wale every reciprocation of the knitting yarn in the course direction.

[0029] For example, the loop 2b at the end portion 2a of a course C2 in the course direction is positioned at the wale W, while the loop 2b at the end portion 2a of the next course C3 in the course direction is positioned at a wale X subsequent to the wale W by one wale apart from the wearing opening 5. The loop 2b at the end portion 2a of the course C24 is positioned at the wale AS, while the loop 2b at the end portion 2a of a course C25 subsequent to C24 is positioned at a wale AT subsequent to the loop 2b on the course C24 by one wale apart from the wearing opening 5. In this embodiment, the loop 2b at the end portion 2a is a tuck loop. This loop may be a knit loop. The foot portion 2 includes a right and a left mesh line 21 where through-holes 2c are linearly arranged.

[0030] As shown in FIG. 1, the intermediate rounded portion 4 includes the front side portion 41, a lateral pair of side portions 42 and 42, and a rear portion 43. The front side portion 41 passes through the top side 8 at the front side (the lower side in FIG. 2) of the wearing opening 5, and is connected to the top-side center portion 12a of the five-barrel portion 11. The side portion 42 passes on the side of the wearing opening 5, and is knitted with the end portion 2a of the foot portion 2 in the course direction. The rear portion 43 traverses the sole side 9, and is connected with the rear ends of the lateral pair of the side portions. In this embodiment, the rear portion 43 is knitted with a rear edge 2d of the foot portion 2.

[0031] The heel portion 3 consists of one bulging portion 3 in this embodiment. The bulging portion 3 includes the bulging lower portion 31, and the bulging upper portion 32. The bulging lower portion 31 is knitted in jersey stitch so that the knitting yarn can be switched back at the opposite ends in the course direction. The knitting width in the course direction is gradually reduced toward the rear side in the wale direction. The bulging upper portion 32 is continuous to the rear of the bulging lower portion 31, and is knitted in jersey stitch so that the knitting yarn can be switched back at the opposite ends in the course direction. The knitting width of the bulging lower portions in the course direction is increased toward the rear side in the wale direction. The opposite ends of the bulging upper portion 32 are knitted with the opposite ends of the bulging lower portion 31. The bulging upper portion and the bulging lower portion are knitted with each other, thereby forming a lateral pair of gore lines 35 and 35 at the bulging portion 3. That is, the lateral pair of gore lines 35 and 35 constitute the opposite ends of the bulging lower portion 31 and the bulging upper portion 32. Note that symbol 35a indicates the start end of the gore line, and symbol 35b indicates the terminal end of the gore line.

[0032] The bulging upper portion 32 includes the rubberless portion 33 that is on the toe side (the front side in the wale direction), and the fastening portion 34 that includes multiple courses of the wearing opening 5 side (the rear side in the wale direction). The rubberless portion 33 is knitted in jersey stitch only with cotton yarn and SCY. In the fastening portion 34, rubber yarn is inserted into the ground structure while the yarn is switched at the gore lines 35 and 35 at the opposite ends in the course direction, the ground structure having been knitted in the jersey stitch with cotton yarn plated with SCY. The fastening portion 34 is provided to have a substantially C-shape along the wearing opening peripheral portion 6, and the end portion 34b on the big toe side (on the depth side of FIG. 1) is provided on the front side of the other side line 72. As described above, the fastening portion 34 is provided for the heel portion 3, thereby allowing the foot cover 100 to be more resistant to slipping off in comparison with the following case where rubber yarn is inserted only into the wearing opening peripheral portion 6.

[0033] The wearing opening peripheral portion 6 includes a rib stitch portion 61 whose distal edge constitutes the wearing opening 5, and a jersey stitch portion 62 that is continuous to the base end edge of the rib stitch portion 61. The jersey stitch portion 62 is knitted in a rounded manner so that a front edge portion 62a can be knitted with the front side portion 41 and the side portion 42 of the intermediate rounded portion 4, and the rear edge portion 62b can be knitted with the fastening portion 34. In the jersey stitch portion 62, rubber yarn is inserted into the jersey stitch structure. In the rib stitch portion 61, rubber yarn is inserted into the rib stitch structure. As described above, in the foot cover 100, rubber yarn is inserted into the wearing opening peripheral portion 6 in a rounded manner. Consequently, the foot cover 100 is resistant to slipping off.

[0034] As shown in FIG. 1, the side line 71 on the little toe side between the lateral pair of side lines 71 and 72 extends rearward from a start point 71a on the side of the toe sack 11a for the little toe, the rear end side is bent upward and intersects with the side portion 42 of the intermediate rounded portion 4, and the distal edge of the rib stitch portion 61 is provided with a terminal point 71b. Meanwhile, the side line 72 on the big toe side extends rearward from the start point 72a on the side of the toe sack 11a for the big toe and intersects with the rear portion 43 of the intermediate rounded portion 4, the rear end side is bent upward at a position rearward from the rear portion 43 and intersects with the gore line 35, and the distal edge of the rib stitch portion 61 is provided with a terminal point 72b. The terminal point 72b is positioned more rearward than the terminal point 71b.

[0035] Next, a method of knitting the foot cover 100 is described. The foot cover 100 is knitted using a flat knitting machine where front and rear needle beds can be racked relatively in the lateral direction in which the knitting needles are arranged and transfer can be made between knitting needles on the front and rear needle beds. The foot cover 100 is knitted in plated stitch by feeding cotton yarn as face yarn from a carrier F1 (not shown) over the entire cover while feeding SCY as back yarn from a carrier F2 (not shown). At the wearing opening peripheral portion 6 and the fastening portion 34, rubber yarn fed from the rubber yarn carrier G is inserted into the ground structure knitted with cotton yarn and SCY. Hereinafter, a combination of the carriers F1 and F2 is called a carrier combination A, and cotton yarn plated with SCY is called ground yarn.

[0036] The foot cover 100 is knitted by sequentially executing a five-barrel portion knitting step S1 (S101), a foot portion knitting step S2 (S201 to S248), an intermediate rounded portion knitting step S3 (S301), a heel portion knitting step S4 (S401 to S419), and a wearing opening peripheral portion knitting step S5 (S501 to S508).

(Five-barrel portion knitting step S1)



[0037] The five-barrel portion knitting step S1 (hereinafter, also abbreviated as "step S1"; such abbreviation is also applicable to other steps) is a step of knitting the five-barrel portion 12 at the rear end of the toe portion 1. The five-barrel portion 12 is knitted subsequent to the toe container portion 11 of the toe portion 1, and is knitted by feeding knitting yarn to the front and rear needle beds in a rounded manner. FIG. 6 shows only lesser step S101 of knitting the course C1 at the rearmost course C1 of the five-barrel portion. In knitting diagrams of FIGS. 6 to 14, → in the traveling direction field indicates the right movement of a carriage while ← indicating the left movement of the carriage, symbols a to al indicate knitting needles, ○ indicates a knit loop of ground yarn, Δ indicates a tuck loop of ground yarn, ▲ indicates a tuck loop of rubber yarn, - indicates a miss loop, ⊚ indicates a knit loop after transfer, and □ indicates an empty needle.
← and → in a knitting method field indicate movement of a loop only by one pitch (one needle) leftward and rightward. ↑ indicates transfer from the knitting needle of the front needle bed F to the knitting needle of the rear needle bed. In each knitting diagram, execution is made sequentially from the lower step.

[0038] In lesser step S101, the carriage is moved to the left, yarn is fed to all the needles ranging from the knitting needle ab to the knitting needle a on the front needle bed F, subsequently the carriage is switched back and moved to the right, yarn is fed to all the needles ranging from the knitting needle a to the knitting needle ab on the rear needle bed B, and a jersey stitch structure rounded from the top to the sole of the foot is knitted.

(Foot portion knitting step S2)



[0039] In the foot portion knitting step S2, the loops of the top-side center portion 12a on the rearmost course C1 of the five-barrel portion 12 knitted in lesser step S101 are left engaged on the knitting needles, and the foot portion 2 is knitted in what is called C-shaped knitting subsequent to the parts of edged-ring portion 12b from which the top-side center portion 12a is excluded. In step S2, knitting only with the ground yarn is performed using only the carrier combination A. In step S2, the courses C2 to C25 are knitted in lesser steps S201 to S248. As for the foot portion 2 and the heel portion 3, one reciprocation of knitting yarn in the course direction is called one course.

[0040] As shown in FIG. 15, in the first lesser step S201 in step S2, needle rows that includes the knitting needles w to ab on the front needle bed, the knitting needles ab to a on the rear needle bed, and the knitting needles a to f on the front needle bed to have edged-ring shape (C-shape) are fed with yarn in a clockwise or counterclockwise rounded manner, and the yarn is fed so that the rounded direction is switched at the knitting needles f and w at the opposite ends.

[0041] More specifically, in lesser step S201, as shown in FIG. 6, first, the carriage is moved to the left to form a knit loop (○) from the knitting needles ab to x on the front needle bed F, and subsequently, the carriage is switched and is moved to the right to form a tuck loop (Δ) on the knitting needle w on the front needle bed F and form the knit loop (○) from the knitting needles x to ab. Next, the carriage is moved to the left to form the knit loop (○) on all the needles from the knitting needle ab to the knitting needle a on the rear needle bed B, subsequently, the carriage is moved to the right to form the knit loop (○) from the knitting needles a to e on the front needle bed, and then the carriage is switched and is moved to the left to form the tuck loop (Δ) on the knitting needle f on the front needle bed and to form the knit loop (○) from the knitting needles e to a. Lastly, the carriage is moved to the right to form the knit loop (○) on all the needles from the knitting needle a to the knitting needle ab on the rear needle bed B.

[0042] Before the knitting needles for feeding yarn to a transition portion D are to be added one by one (front and rear knitting needles ac and ac) on the front and rear needle beds in lesser step S203 described later, the loop is transferred from the knitting needles ab and ab on the front and rear adjacent to the knitting needles ac and ac that are to be additionally fed with yarn in lesser step S202. In this embodiment, as shown in FIG. 6, transfer is made from not only the front and rear knitting needles ab and ab but also all the knitting needles on the needle row except the three knitting needles(the knitting needles d, e and f and the knitting needles w, x and y on the front needle bed) that are from the opposite ends of the edged-ring-shaped (C-shaped) needle row and engages the loop to the knitting needles adjacent to the knitting needles in directions apart from the opposite ends of the edged-ring-shaped needle row. More specifically, first, the front knitting needles z, aa and ab are transferred respectively to the knitting needles aa, ab and ac adjacent rightward, and next, all the loops engaged on the knitting needles a to ab on the rear needle bed B are transferred to the knitting needles b to ac adjacent rightward. Subsequently, the loop on the knitting needle a on the front needle bed F is transferred to the knitting needle a on the rear needle bed B, and the loops engaged on the knitting needles b and c on the front needle bed F are transferred to the respective knitting needles a and b adjacent leftward. Resultantly, as shown in parentheses in an upper part in the field of S202 in FIG. 6, the loop is disposed. The transfer in step S202 causes the knitting needle z on the front needle bed F and the knitting needle c on the rear needle bed B to be empty needles. In step S2, every time the yarn feed direction is switched, two or more knitting needles for yarn feeding may be reduced from the end of the edged-ring-shaped needle row for yarn feeding.

[0043] In lesser step S203, the needle is reduced one by one from each of the opposite ends of the edged-ring-shaped needle row (see FIG. 15A) on which the loops have been engaged in step S202, and, to compensate the reduction in the number of stitches on the course C3 accordingly, knitting needles for feeding yarn to the edged-ring-shaped needle row are added. In this embodiment, yarn is fed to the needle row where one knitting needle is increased at each of the front and the rear, the knitting needle being for feeding yarn to the position adjacent rightward to the right transition portion D between the right and left transition portions D and D where knitting yarn transitions from the front needle bed F to the rear needle bed B. More specifically, in lesser step S203, as shown in FIGS. 6 and 15B, yarn feed to the knitting needles f and w on the front needle bed F is stopped. This leaves the loops 2b and 2b, having been knitted in lesser step S201, on the opposite ends in the course direction of the course C2 to be engaged on the front knitting needles f and w. Yarn feed to the knitting needles f and w on the opposite ends of the edged-ring-shaped needle row on which the loop of the last course C2 is engaged is stopped, thereby causing the number of stitches on the course C3 to be smaller by two than the number of stitches on the course C2. To compensate the reduction, as shown in FIG. 15B, in lesser step S203, yarn is fed also to the front knitting needle ac and the rear knitting needle ac that are adjacent rightward to the knitting needles ab and ab constituting the right transition portion D of the edged-ring-shaped needle row fed with the knitting yarn in step S201. This can prevent the reduction of the number of stitches as the foot portion 2 transitions toward the rear, and prevent the wearing opening from being widened to the sole. Here, "the number of stitches" is the total of the numbers of knit loops, tuck loops, miss loops and through-holes.

[0044] As described above, before step S203, the multiple knitting needles including the front and rear knitting needles ab and ab are transferred in step S202 is for the sake of connecting the loop having been formed on the front and rear knitting needles ab and ab in lesser step S201 to the loop formed on the front and rear knitting needles ac and ac to which the yarn feed has been newly added, in step S203, for avoiding occurrence of two consecutive large through-holes at the front and rear positions ac and ac in step S203, and for providing one small through-hole at each of the positions of the front knitting needle c and the front knitting needle z alternatively.

[0045] Hereinafter, according to lesser steps S204 to S214 in FIGS. 6 to 9, the flat knitting machine is operated in a manner analogous to that in lesser steps S201 to S203. In this case, a knitting needle for yarn feeding is always added to the position adjacent right ward to the right transition portion D in a manner analogous to that in lesser step S203. (note that it is a matter of course that a knitting needle for yarn feeding can be sometimes added to the left transition portion D, and addition of a knitting needle for yarn feeding can be omitted, to an extent that does not affect knitting of the foot cover). Accordingly, the knitting needles at the opposite ends of the edged-ring-shaped needle row on which the loop is engaged is moved to the rear knitting needle a and the front knitting needle ac and is thus separated to the front and rear needle beds, as shown in S213 in FIG. 9 and FIG. 16A, in some stage. Consequently, at the left of the needle bed, the knitting yarn is prevented from transitioning between the front and rear needle beds, and the side line 71 on the left side (the little toe side in FIG. 1) herein reaches the end 2a of the foot portion 2 in the course direction. Hereafter, the edged-ring-shaped needle row for yarn feeding becomes the J-shaped needle rows as shown in FIG. 16, and the transition portion D resides only on the right side.

[0046] Even after the needle row for yarn feeding forms the J-shape, yarn feed to the knitting needles on the opposite ends of the needle row fed with yarn on the last course is stopped in a manner analogous to that in the case where the needle row for yarn feeding has the C-shape, and yarn feed is added to the front and rear knitting needles consecutively rightward to the transition portion D of the needle row alternatively. For example, in step S215, as shown in FIGS. 9 and 16B, yarn feed to the rear knitting needle a and the front knitting needle ac on the opposite ends of the J-shaped needle row that includes the rear knitting needles a to ah fed and the front knitting needles ac to ah with yarn in S213 is stopped, the front and rear knitting needles ai and ai adjacent rightward to the transition portion D of the needle row (see FIG. 16A) fed with yarn in step S213 are added, and the front knitting needles ad to ai and the rear knitting needles b to ai are fed with yarn.

[0047] In step S214, as shown in FIG. 9, before step S215, the loops engaged on the front knitting needles af to ah and the rear knitting needles d to ah are transferred to the knitting needles adjacent rightward thereto. Accordingly, in step S215, the loop formed on the front and rear knitting needles ah and ah in lesser step S213 is connected to the loop formed on the front and rear knitting needles ai and ai, possible two consecutive large through-holes that are to occur at the positions of the front and rear knitting needles ai and ai are prevented from occurring in step S214, and one small through-hole is added to each of the positions of the rear knitting needle d and the front knitting needle af alternatively.

[0048] Hereinafter, as shown in FIGS. 9 and 10, analogous knitting is repeated from lesser step S216 to lesser step S248 (illustration of S219 to S246 (C11 to C24) is omitted) to knit the foot portion 2. To lesser step S248, on the right side of the needle bed, yarn is fed so that the yarn can transition between the front and rear knitting needles. Consequently, the side line 72 on the right side (the big toe side) of the foot cover 100 passes through the entire length of the foot portion 2 in the longitudinal direction as shown in FIG. 1.

(Intermediate rounded portion knitting step S3)



[0049] In this embodiment, as shown in FIG. 10, the intermediate rounded portion knitting step S3 is performed subsequent to the foot portion knitting step S2. Step S3 consists of lesser step S301. In lesser step S301, a combination is made that includes: the front knitting needles g to v on which the loop has been engaged in the five-barrel portion knitting step S1; the front knitting needles a to f, the front knitting needles w to at, and the rear knitting needles a to r on which the loop 2b at the opposite ends 2a and 2a of the foot portion 2 in the course direction has been engaged in the foot portion knitting step S2; and the rear knitting needles s to az, and the front knitting needles au to az on which the loop on the course C25 at the rearmost of the foot portion has been engaged, thereby feeding yarn in a rounded manner to all the needles that are the front knitting needles az to a and the rear knitting needles a to az to form a course C26 for the jersey stitch. The course C26 constitutes the intermediate rounded portion 4. The part of the intermediate rounded portion 4 that is knitted by the front knitting needles g to v constitutes the front side portion 41, and is connected to the top-side center portion 12a of the five-barrel portion 12. The part knitted by the front knitting needles a to f and the rear knitting needles a to r constitutes the side portion 42 on the left side (the little toe side). The part knitted by the front knitting needles w to at constitutes the side portion 42 on the right side (the big toe side), and is connected to the opposite end portions 2a and 2a of the foot portion. The part knitted by the knitting needle w to at constitutes the rear portion 43, and is connected to the course C26 at the rear edge 2d of the foot portion 2. As described above, while the loop of the top-side center portion 12a is left engaged on the knitting needles in step S1, step S2 is executed, and in step S2, knitting is performed while the entire loop at the opposite ends 2a and 2a of the foot portion 2 in the course direction is left on the knitting needles. Consequently, in step S3, the intermediate rounded portion 4 can be knitted in the rounded manner along the top-side center portion 12a, the opposite ends 2a and 2a of the foot portion in the course direction, and the rear edge 2d of the foot portion. The intermediate rounded portion knitting step S3 is thus provided, which can take off the loop that is at the top-side center portion of the five-barrel portion and is left engaged on the knitting needles and the loop that is at the opposite ends of the foot portion in the course direction, from the knitting needles, and transfer the loops downward, prevent the knitting fabric from being clamped between the front and rear needle beds, and prevent the loops from being damaged owing to engagement of the loops on the knitting needles for a long time.

(Heel portion knitting step S4)



[0050] In this embodiment, the heel portion knitting step S4 is executed subsequent to the intermediate rounded portion knitting step S3. In lesser steps S401 to S407 shown in FIG. 11 in step S4, the bulging lower portion 31 is knitted. In lesser steps S408 to S419 shown in FIGS. 12 to 14, the bulging upper portion 32 is knitted. In lesser steps S408 to S415 among the lesser steps, the rubberless portion 33 is knitted. In lesser steps S416 to S419, the fastening portion 34 is knitted.

[0051] In lesser steps S401 to S407 of knitting the bulging lower portion 31, as shown in FIG. 11, knitting is performed such that the later the lesser step is in execution, the knitting width in the course direction is reduced, while the yarn feed direction is switched at the opposite ends in the course direction, the tuck loop (Δ) is formed by the knitting needles at which the yarn feed direction is switched, and the knit loop (○) is formed by the other knitting needles, thereby knitting all the courses in the jersey stitch. In lesser steps S401 to S403, knitting is performed by the J-shaped needle row across the front and rear needle beds. Consequently, as shown in FIG. 1, the side line 72 on the big toe side passes through the bulging lower portion 31.

[0052] In lesser steps S408 to S419 of knitting the bulging upper portion 32, as shown in FIGS. 12 to 14, the later the lesser step is in execution, the more largely the knitting width is widened, while the yarn feed direction is switched at the knitting needles on the opposite ends in the course direction. The rack loop (Δ) is formed by the knitting needles at which the yarn feed direction is switched, and the opposite ends of the bulging upper portion 32 are knitted with the opposite ends of the bulging lower portion 31. The line on which the opposite ends of the bulging upper portion 32 and the bulging lower portion 31 are knitted together is the gore line 35. At the other knitting needles, the knit loop (○) is formed, and all the courses are knitted in the jersey stitch. As described above, the gore lines 35 and 35 are provided for the heel portion 3, thereby allowing the last course C44 of the heel portion 3 to be arranged along the periphery of the wearing opening 5 together with the top-side center portion 12a, and the opposite ends 2a and 2a of the foot portion 2. Consequently, the wearing opening peripheral portion 6 can be knitted in a rounded manner along the periphery of the wearing opening 5. As shown in FIGS. 13 and 14, in lesser steps C416 to C419 in bulging portion knitting step S4, rubber yarn is knitted into the jersey-stitched ground structure to form the fastening portion 34.

(Wearing opening peripheral portion knitting step S5)



[0053] As shown in FIG. 14, subsequent to heel portion knitting step S4, wearing opening peripheral portion knitting step S5 is executed. In step S5, the knitting needles (the front knitting needles a to as and the rear knitting needles a to q) on which the loop is left engaged after intermediate rounded portion knitting step S3, and the knitting needles (the front knitting needles at to az and the rear knitting needles r to az) on which the loop is engaged on the rearmost course C44 at the bulging upper portion are integrally fed with ground yarn in a rounded manner around all the needles that are the front knitting needles za to a and the rear knitting needles a to az to knit the jersey stitch structure, and three rubber yarns are inserted per one course of the ground structure of the jersey stitch to knit the jersey stitch portion 62. Although the knitting diagram is omitted, subsequent to knitting of the jersey stitch portion 62, ground yarn is fed from the carrier combination A and rubber yarn is fed from the carrier G, in a rounded manner, thereby knitting the rib stitch portion 61 where the rubber yarn is inserted into the ground structure of the rib stitch structure. The distal edge of the rib stitch portion 61 is subjected to a stitch-laying process.

(Other embodiments)



[0054] The foot cover according to the present invention is not necessarily limited to the above embodiments. For example, the intermediate rounded portion 4 may be omitted as with the second embodiment in FIG. 18. Alternatively, the rear portion 43 of the intermediate rounded portion 4 may pass through an intermediate part of the foot portion 2 in the longitudinal direction as with the third embodiment in FIG. 19, or may pass through the boundary of bulging lower portion 31 and the bulging upper portion 32 of the heel portion 3 along the gore line 35 as with the fourth embodiment in FIG. 20.

[0055] In the foot portion knitting step, knitting yarn may be fed in a U-shaped manner as indicated by a chain double-dashed line in FIG. 17A. For example, in FIG. 17A, knitting yarn is fed in the order indicated by arrows from the front knitting needles t to a and the rear knitting needles t to a. In the next lesser step shown in FIG. 17B, yarn feed to the front knitting needle a and the rear knitting needle a that constitute the opposite ends of the U-shaped needle row in FIG. 17A is stopped, and the knitting needles u and u adjacent rightward to the right transition portion D are added to the needle row fed with yarn, alternatively, thereby feeding knitting yarn to the U-shaped needle row that includes the front knitting needles u to b and the front knitting needles u to b along the arrow in the diagram. This allows the loop at the opposite ends of the foot portion to be engaged on the knitting needles until knitting of the foot portion is finished. In this case, the side line made up of a trace of the knitting yarn passing through the front and rear needle beds is formed so as to pass through the center in the lateral direction on the top side, and the center of the lateral direction on the sole side.

[0056] Alternatively, the foot cover of the present invention does not necessarily have the toe sacks. The gore line may include two or more bulging portions as in a case of what is called a Y-heel. The wearing opening peripheral portion may be provided with only one of rib stitch portion and the jersey stitch portion. Rubber yarn may be provided for the foot portion or the like, which is other than the fastening portion and the wearing opening peripheral portion. Yarn adopted as the ground yarn or the rubber yarn is not limited to the yarn adopted in the above embodiments. Publicly known yarn may be appropriately adopted in a scope without departing the spirit of the present invention.


Claims

1. A foot cover knitting method of knitting a foot cover (100) using a flat knitting machine that includes front and rear needle beds capable of relatively racking in a lateral direction and is capable of transfer between knitting needles on the front and rear needle beds, the foot cover comprising: a toe portion (1) on a front end side; a heel portion (3) on a rear end side; a foot portion (2) between the toe portion (1) and the heel portion(3); and a wearing opening (6) that opens from the foot portion (2) to the heel portion (3) at the top side, the toe portion (1) including a five-barrel portion (12) knitted in a rounded manner at its rear edge from a top side to a sole side, the heel portion (3) including one or more gore lines (35) on each of opposite sides, the method comprising:

a five-barrel portion knitting step of feeding knitting yarn to the knitting needles on the front and rear needle beds in a rounded manner to knit the five-barrel portion (12);

a foot portion knitting step of, subsequent to the five-barrel portion knitting step, feeding yarn to an edged-ring-shaped needle row on which loops of an edged-ring portion 12b) on a last course of the five-barrel portion (12) except a top-side center portion (12a) are engaged, in a state where loops on a last course of the five-barrel portion (12) are engaged on the knitting needles of the front and rear needle beds in a rounded manner, and subsequently knitting the foot portion (2) so that a yarn feed direction is switched back at opposite ends of the edged-ring-shaped needle row, while reducing one or more knitting needles fed with yarn at the end of the edged-ring-shaped needle row every time the yarn feed direction is switched, and while adding one or more knitting needles fed with yarn to a transition portion on a laterally identical side of the edged-ring-shaped needle row every time of one reciprocation of feeding yarn to the edged-ring-shaped needle row;

a heel portion knitting step of, subsequent to the foot portion knitting step, knitting the heel portion (3) while providing one or more gore lines (35) on the opposite ends; and

a wearing opening peripheral portion knitting step of, subsequent to the heel portion knitting step, feeding knitting yarn in a rounded manner to knitting needles on which the loop is left engaged on the knitting needles to knit the wearing opening peripheral portion (6).


 
2. The foot cover knitting method according to claim 1, wherein the foot portion knitting step is started in a state where both the opposite ends of the edged-ring-shaped needle row reside one of the needle beds between the front and rear needle beds, and is continued after the opposite ends of the edged-ring-shaped needle row separates to the front and rear needle beds.
 
3. The foot cover knitting method according to claim 1 or 2, further comprising an intermediate rounded portion knitting step of feeding knitting yarn in a rounded manner to all the knitting needles on which the loop remains on the knitting needles, while the yarn is left fed, to knit the intermediate rounded portion (4), in a middle of the foot portion knitting step, between the foot portion knitting step and the heel portion knitting step, or in a middle of the heel portion knitting step.
 
4. The foot cover knitting method according to any one of claims 1 to 3, wherein in the foot portion knitting step, before one or more knitting needles fed with yarn are added to the transition portion, loops are transferred from the knitting needles adjacent to the knitting needles to be added.
 
5. A foot cover (100) comprising: a toe portion (1) on a front end side; a heel portion (3) on a rear end side; a foot portion (2) between the toe portion and the heel portion; a wearing opening (5) that opens from the foot portion (2) to the heel portion (3) at the top side; and a pair of side lines (71, 72) that include traces where knitting yarn has transitioned over the front and rear needle beds of a flat knitting machine, the toe portion including a five-barrel portion (12) knitted in a rounded manner at its rear edge from a top side to a sole side, the heel portion (3) including one or more gore lines (35) on each of opposite sides,
wherein the foot portion is continuous to an edged-ring portion except a top-side center portion (12a) of the five-barrel portion (12), and includes an edged-ring-shaped knitting structure where the knitting yarn is switched back at opposite end portions in a course direction so as not to interfere with the wearing opening (5), a loop at the opposite end portions is formed in a wale where the more rear a position is at, the more apart the wale is from the wearing opening (5), and at least one or some of courses has through-holes and/or increases,
one of the pair of side lines (71, 72) intersects with opposite end portions of the foot portion (2)in the course direction, the other side line of the pair of the side lines (71, 72) intersects with a rear edge of the foot portion, or the one side line passes through a center of a top side in a lateral direction, and the other side line passes through a center of a sole side in the lateral direction, and
the foot cover further comprises a wearing opening (5) peripheral portion where knitting yarn is knitted in a rounded manner at a periphery of the wearing opening (5).
 
6. The foot cover (100), according to claim 5, wherein the one of the pair of side lines (71, 72) intersects with one of the opposite ends of the foot portion in the course direction, and the other side line of the pair of the side lines (71, 72) intersects with the rear edge of the foot portion.
 
7. The foot cover, according to claim 5 or 6, wherein the through-holes (2c) are linearly arranged.
 
8. The foot cover, according to any one of claims 5 to 7, wherein rubber yarn is inserted and/or plated into the wearing opening peripheral portion (6).
 
9. The foot cover, according to any one of claims 5 to 8, wherein the heel portion (3) comprises a fastening portion into which rubber yarn is inserted and/or plated, while the rubber yarn is switched back in the course direction at the right and left gore lines (35).
 




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Cited references

REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



This list of references cited by the applicant is for the reader's convenience only. It does not form part of the European patent document. Even though great care has been taken in compiling the references, errors or omissions cannot be excluded and the EPO disclaims all liability in this regard.

Patent documents cited in the description