I always have trouble coming up with a topic for my three things. Today I will tell you three things about how I knit.
- When knitting flat stockinette or any kind of ribbing, I use Annie Modesitt’s combination method. My flat stockinette is cursed with slight rowing-out, which is cured — hurrah! — by her combination method. My ribbing tends to have a larger gap between a knit stitch and the following purl stitch than between a purl and following knit. This gap thing has bugged me ever since I knit my second sweater — an Aran knit! I had no idea it was supposed to be hard, so I just did it — back in 1968. I was delighted to discover Annie’s method some 40+ years later.
- I was a monogamous knitter for decades, until I encountered on knitting blogs the concept of multiple WIPs. This discovery may possibly have led to a mini-plethora* of UFOs in my life. But having a choice of what to knit is a benefit, I think, although I seldom work on more than two things concurrently: a portable project like socks or a hat or a scarf and a larger, perhaps more demanding, project to work on at home. As you saw in yesterday’s post, my current large project is my Fairfield-ish sweater and the portable one is a hat. There is a skein of yarn arriving in the mail today — what yarn fast? — that will become another hat for the anti-bullying project.
- I knit exclusively on circs. Thus, I have four sets of interchangeable needles and a 3-ring binder of individual circ with multiples of all, especially in the US#4 to US#7 range. This all adds up to at least 50 needles, but how horrible is it to be all hot to cast on a project, only to discover that the only appropriate needle in one’s possession is in another WIP (see #2, above)?
The interchangeables are a Boye set I purchased in about 1983; their cables are stiffer than the cables on newer needles, so I almost never use them any more. I have a Denise set from the late 2000s that I quit using when the cable pulled out of the tip just after I joined the sleeves to the body on a bottom-up seamless yoke for the Dulaan project. It so annoyed me to have to pick up 100+ stitches, plus having to deal with tips even blunter than those of Addi Turbos, that I put them on a shelf and never picked them up again. My go-to needles are a Knitter’s Pride bamboo set and an extensive Knit Picks Options set that live next to my knitting chair. I have added more tips and cables to the Options set over the years, so it is a set with real depth in terms of options (see what I did there?) I particularly like the Options (and related Caspian and Rainbow) for anything with lots of k2tog because of their sharp tips. The needles in the 3-ring binder, which also lives next to my knitting chair, are largely Addi Turbos, plus a few Signature circs, a few Knitter’s Pride Karbonz circs, and a few unidentified circs. Addi Turbos are good for splitty yarns, and Signatures have lovely sharp tips, even on the mediums.
I see on other knitting blogs that people are very fond of their Hiya Hiya and ChiaGoo needles. My sock needles are Hiya Hiyas US#2.5 and US#4 and I like them very much, but I really do not need to expand my needle collection. Unless there is an emergency, like the time I left my knitting on dining room table when we went on a 5-day camping trip to the North Shore. Yarn Harbor in Duluth came to the rescue with yarn and those Hiya Hiyas.
I will never lack the needle for a new project.
* I always look for the opportunity to use the word “plethora”. A mini-plethora may be oxymoronic, but it perfectly describes the state of my UFO pile.