I've been following the posts all day and there are a lot of questions on how to figure out how to make a pair of socks that actually fit. I've knitted about 20 pairs of socks so far. The first 5-6 pairs of those were all duds! Either too big, or stretchy, or sloppy, etc.
I don't know why but I just have this aversion to knitting swatches. I even tried it as I've been teaching myself to knit socks, but it still didn't work to help me figure out the size.
Finally, I found a tried and true pattern that I memorized. Now I can knit socks and do other cool stuff with them like add lace to the legs.
I wear a size 9 shoe, medium. I only knit socks using the 64 stitch caston. I knit down 7 inches from the top of the cuff, then start the heel flap and heel turn. When I get to the long haul to the toe, I knit 7 inches from the tip of the heel (measuring from the bottom of the sock) until I start the decreases for the toe. Another way to know the length before you start the toe decreases, is when you try the sock on and it is right at the base of where your big toe is attached to your foot :)
I use two circular Addi Turbo needles, US 1's, 24", with sock yarn that is superfine #1.
One of the reasons I'm in the KAL is to learn how to knit in other types of yarns and with different sized needles. But for beginners, save yourself some grief! Once you get a pair or two knitted, you can branch off to something more adventurous. I wasted a lot of time and yarn getting this down. Hopefully it will help some of you to get started.
I know it's not the "official" swatch method of determining size, but it sure worked for me to learn how to knit socks successfully.