Straight needles

DSC_0073 DSC_0078 DSC_0131 DSC_0141 DSC_0145 DSC_0154 DSC_0180The other week I had a bit of a revelation. I thought that the love for straight needles was well and truely dead. When seeing them in a yarn store I always wonder how long they have been sitting there. But a full set, from 2 3/4mm to 7 1/2mm, came home with me from our Christmas in England, and as I planned to cast on a new project for our little one I thought I’d try them out. I was hard pushed to remember the last time I used them, but I know I definitely taught myself to knit using them. I posted on instagram and facebook and queried weather people still knit with straight needles or not. Turns out there is a love/hate relationship. Some people don’t even own any, some just plain love them.

Me? Well I thought a baby sized cardigan would be a good experiment, to see how I feel about them. First I had to read through the whole pattern – which, of course, is never a bad thing – but I had to think in terms of weather or not I could master the pattern on straight needles. Worked in one piece from back to front and seamed under the sleeves it turns out, for this cardigan, I could, and I cast on right away… It was a bit awkward to begin with, I felt like every stitch I was going to poke an eye out, and I kept smirking as I couldn’t help thinking how I looked like the ‘stereotypical’ knitter (whatever that means) clicking away, needles flapping like wings. But I got in my grove and finished the back of the sweater. As I cast on stitches at either side for the sleeves to grow it definitively got a bit crowded on my needles, but decided I’d rather that then add any more inches to the threatening eye weapon. I cast off for the neck and begun working down the left front, and it is only at this time at which I lost the other needle. Only once in the whole project was I fumbling around for the unattached needle. I surprised myself! I finished off the other front and picked up the stitches around the neck and fronts to finish the collar. This took cramming the stitches on the needle to another level but we got there in the end. Conclusion? I don’t hate them, but I don’t love ’em. Perhaps for the perfect project, maybe a scarf? Maybe they just felt strange because I’m not used to them, but I’m definitely more at home with my circulars. What about you?

Pattern : Baby Ribbed Jacket by Debbie Bliss (FREE)

Yarn : Plymouth Yarn Worsted Merino Superwash Kettle Dyed (oh and I could do a whole ‘nother post on superwash yarn, ugh, can’t say I like the stuff, and this blocking experience reminded me why I avoid it. But I won’t go on and on because it all worked out, the crazy growth disappeared as it dried.)

5 thoughts on “Straight needles

  1. I definitely like straight needles for narrower projects, but I hate trying to crowd too many stitches on them. They get heavy and hurt my wrists! That baby sweater is completely adorable. I love grandpa sweaters on little babies, they’re so charming!

  2. I own a nice collection of straight needles, but it’s been years since I actually used them. I like how convenient interchangeable circulars are. They just fit so nicely in a project bag and they’re much more comfortable for me to hold.

  3. I definitely agree with you. I knitted my very first project on straight needles. They were pretty much appropriate for the very long scarf in garter stitch that I made.
    But now, I really cannot imagine myself going back to them. But they look so nice in the jar next to my window, that i really cannot get rid of them.

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