Community, Knitter's Talk, Knitting Needles, knitting needles, needles

Using Metal Needles

Hey Everyone!

It has been years since I used metal knitting needles, and quite honestly I hated using them back then.

A few months ago, when I was in a yarn store a few months ago the employee made a blanket statement that I took some issue with. She had something along the lines of “all experienced knitters prefer metal needles”. I didn’t say anything, but in my head I was like “excuse me? I have been knitting for almost 25 years, and I prefer wooden needles”

So I bought some metal DPN’s (double pointed needles) and after one sock, I can honestly say that after nearly 25 years of knitting, I can’t stand metal needles. When I finish the sock I am working on (in order to keep a consistent gauge), I will not be using metal needles any longer, and going back to my preferred wooden ones.

One of the things I hate about metal needles is that they are slippery. They are constantly slipping out of my knitting and don’t hold onto the knitting or slipping out of my hands, so the control isn’t there. I have also had larger projects stick, and have to yank on more on straight metal needles than on wooden needles. It also depends on the type of yarn you are using.

So no, not all experienced knitters like metal needles. Some of us prefer wood / bamboo needles.

What I like to tell people when I get asked which one is best, is that in my opinion plastic is useless and a pain in the butt, though the choice between metal and wood / bamboo is really a personal preference.

Knitting, Knitting Needles, Knitting Projects, Personal Projects, Skills, Socks, Wool, Yarn

KnitPicks Order

Hey Everyone! 

This past Friday, December 9th, I had put in an order through KnitPicks for some year and double point needles. 

I had ordered 4 skeins of KnitPicks Palette yarn in Finnley Heather and 4 skeins of KnitPicks Palette yarn in Marble Heather. The Finnley Heather is more of a light grey, while the Marble Heather is a medium grey. I should point out that I am not usually much of a grey person, though in the past 3 years it has grown on me since I worked at a knitting studio a few years ago. While I worked there my favorite yarns were the 100% cashmeres made by Todd & Duncan. I wouldn’t expect anything less than amazing yarn from a Scottish Company, and that is where the yarns shipped from. My favorite color we had was called “Storm” which was a very dark grey or an off black. 

The Palette yarn is 100% Peruvian Highland Wool. I love working with Wool, and love how the woolen projects turn out. 

I also bought a 6 set pack of double point needles, containing: US Size 0 (2.00 mm), US Size 1 (2.25 mm), US Size 1 (2.50 mm), US Size 2 (2.75 mm), US Size 2 (3.00 mm), and US Size 3 (3.25 mm). I am wanting to try making more socks. That is part of why I bought more DPN in multiple sizes. The last two pairs of socks I had knit were still too loosely knit, and my feet were still frozen. That is part of why I am going to try knitting socks with wool and using smaller needles, like the size 0 or the size 1’s. When I thought the 2.75 mm size 2 needles were small the 0 and size 1 needles are so small, which will mean tighter knit and warmer socks. 

My obsession with socks really comes down to the fact that I really enjoy trying new projects and the fact that I need some good winter hiking / boot socks that will keep my feet warm without being overly thick and uncomfortable. 

Knitting Essentials, Knitting Needles, Thursday Tips

Needles Stash

Hey everyone!

Today’s Thursday Tip post is going to be about the different size needles I have in my needle stash, and what sizes I recommend as the bare necessities.

This post is intended for someone who has mastered the basics of knit and purl, and is ready to move on to bigger and other projects.

In my stash I have at least one pair of straight needles in the following sizes: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 11. I have multiple pairs of needles in size 5, size 7 and size 9. Size 7 and 9 needles are the two sizes I most commonly use and I have at least two sets of them. I have a long pair and a short pair of size 5 needles. I also have circular needles in size 5, 7, and 9. I like having a few circular needles for bigger projects so I have more room to spread out the project on the needles.

Once you have learned to knit, and are wanting to start working on expanding the size of needles you have, I recommend size 5, 7, and 9 followed by 6 and 8. I have 3, 4, 11, and a circular size 13 or 15 needles. I will occasionally use the size 3 and 4 needles if I am working with thinner year and want the stitches to be tighter. I will rarely (like a couple times a year at most) use the size 11 needles that I have, and I haven’t used the size 13 or 15 (see I can’t even remember what size they are) since I purchased them. If you are into using really thick or doubling up thicker yarns, or a really loose stitch than the bigger needles would be good, but with the projects I typically work on I don’t have much need for anything bigger than a 9.

I also prefer bamboo and wooden needles to the metal needles, and I detest plastic needles. With the bamboo and wooden needles, the yarn moves a lot easier for me, and I like how they feel in my hands. I can knit with the metal needles, but when I have the option I go for the wooden or bamboo. I detest plastic needles because the yarn catches, and doesn’t move up and down the needle on its own, and I have had to force whatever I am working on, one way or the other to work the garment.