Do you really know how to produce socks?

Table of Contents

There are many processes from raw materials to finished socks, and each process in turn must be carried out in a certain way and conditions. The production process of a sock factory must be based on the performance of the raw materials, the requirements of the finished products, the equipment used and other conditions. A reasonable process can shorten the production cycle and achieve high quality, high yield and low cost. Before the product is put into production, it mainly goes through several steps of sample testing, sample review, validation and production. The processing process of raw materials includes dyeing before knitting, knitting before dyeing, and the process is determined according to the conditions of socks, raw materials and equipment. Most of the cotton socks and elastic nylon socks are dyed and then knitted, while the plain cotton socks and nylon socks are knitted and then dyed. Today, we will briefly list the production process of conventional socks and compression socks as an example.

So how to produce socks? The first step is to prepare raw materials and use machines to clean and smoothen them for production. Then put yarn on the sock machines to start production, after the socks finished, we need then to link the toe part. Afterward, socks should be boarded to a certain shape. The last step is packing.

Material preparation

First of all, our factory need to purchase raw materials according to different orders. We will figure out the material in each socks and decide the purchase amount.

material counting max hosiery

The basic raw materials for socks are cotton, bamboo fiber, polyester, nylon, and so on. These raw materials are basically available in ready-made yarns, but if you have a specified color number and the ready-made yarns cannot meet the demand, you need to customize them, and it normally takes extra 15-20 days on dyeing.

Factories generally decide how many machines to use to produce according to the number of orders placed. Usually, the factors that affect the delivery time are as follows:

  1. The pattern

The more complex pattern or the full version of the pattern will lead to increased loss in production, resulting in low yield.

The output of a normal crew length cotton sock is usually about 200 pairs of one machine per day, while our production of compression socks is about 120-150 pairs of one machine a day.

2. Structure

Socks have the difference on the sole part: flat or terry.


The output of the terry/cushion socks in the picture above will be less than that of the flat sole. Therefore, if the structure of the terry is added to the same pattern, the delivery time will be longer flat sole.

3. Color

Dark socks will have a faster delivery date than light socks.

Because there is oil on the machine, light-colored socks are easy to get dirty at the beginning of production, so these quantities will be disposed of until the machine is stable.

Thus light-colored socks, especially white socks, take longer on production.

4. Size

If many different sizes are involved in an order, the factory needs to adjust the machine during production, which usually takes about half a day. Therefore, if there’re many sizes, it will also affect the delivery time.

At the same time, our factory will also carry out the first inspection at this stage.

socks flipping

In the semi-finished stage, workers will conduct an initial strict inspection of socks to see if there are any serious problems, such as socks pattern, holes on socks, problems in size, and so on.

If the problem is caused by machine, we will adjust the machine immediately to avoid more defective products.

If there are other problems, factory will collect these defective products and deal with them centrally.

Socks flipping

we will get the following socks after socks finished, then our workers will flip socks inside out. The purpose of this process is to facilitate the next step of toe-linking, and we can also arrange a second inspection of socks.

Workers will put socks on the sock plate so that they can clearly see some problems on the socks, such as holes, threads and so on.


Toe linking

Toe-linking is to sewn the toe part together. As shown in the picture just now, the semi-finished sock is unsewn. There are two main options of toe-linking, seamless hand-linking and rosso.

toe linking of socks

The first option is to tuck the toe part of the sock into a disc-shaped machine, requiring each stitch to be aligned, and then pulling off the excess thread, so that no suture marks can be seen after stitching, and no suture marks can be felt on the feet.

In addition, the output in this way is also relatively low, and the delivery time is longer.

For rosso linking, there is an obvious thread on the toe part. I’ve also posted an article with different sewing methods ,here’s link for your reference.


The newly finished looks baggy, as shown in the picture below.

The sock boarding process is to support the socks into different shapes and sizes through different specifications of sock plates, then using a setting machine to qualitatively shape the socks under high temperature and high pressure.

The output of the boarding is determined according to the thickness and length of socks, and the longer and thicker the socks are, the lower the output is.

semi finished socks max hosiery


There’re many different accessories, which means the ingredients in addition to the socks themselves. These accessories may be grips, lace, embroidery, labels and so on.

The delivery time varies according to different additions.


The workers will re-pair the socks before packing.

Pair two pieces of socks in the same size into a pair and pack them.

Because different colors of raw materials will have a certain shrinkage, so even if the same size of socks, different colors may be a little different. So socks usually have a certain size tolerance, basically around ±1cm, but the stretching is the same, so it does not affect wearing.


After the re-pairing is completed, we will start packing. We have many different packaging for reference, and here is a video.

Usually socks are packed with OPP bags, color boxes, color bags, header cards and so on. Different packaging will also affect the delivery time.

The above is a basic production process of socks, click below link to see how we produce socks!

If you have any questions about socks, please feel free to contact us.

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