Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Needles and Pins

Work continues on the WRS - she is bigger and today she went to work, wrapped in a pillow-case, to be shown off. I'm a month into the project and have completed 6 plain rows garter stitch, 2x66row repeats, plus 14 rows. There are 5 repeats plus 42 rows and 6 rows garter stitch. I have no real idea as to when I will be finished the centre, though it's obviously quite far down the line. However, when I do finish, I will need to work in the round on quite a lot of stitches. No, I don't know how many and I don't think I want to know at this stage. Yes, I am in denial.

So I've started to think about which needles to use when I get to that stage. I don't have any circular needles in 2mm size, so we are talking new needle purchase here. The only circular needles my LYS stocks are Inox and I can't say I'm all that thrilled with the joins, though I like the points. Since we are using skinny silk the joins really must be as smooth as possible. The Rolls Royce of knitting needles is the Addi Turbo. Now, they do have smooth joins but they are not very pointy (technical term). What to do? I have heard good reports of Knitpicks new needles - Addis with sharp points, they say. All very well. But Knitpicks don't ship outside the US. (They say it's because they can't guarantee to equal the service they can provide to the domestic market. What? They can't guarantee the service, so they prefer to provide no service at all? Hello?? Global market-place. Don't get me started.)

If anyone out there has any suggestions as to pointy circular needles with smooth joins, and preferably not grey, so I stand half a chance of actually seeing the skinny yarn, please feel free to leave a comment, or email me directly - the address is over there in the sidebar - I trust you to replace the bits that need replacing with the bits that should be there.

Light relief from the WRS is called for - I don't call that %$##* sock light relief - it's driving me barmy. Many thanks for all your comments about how it's not my fault, I am not alone and the links to the Widdershins sock in Knitty (which I might well try when I get on to the next pair). Someone has asked me to knit a shawl for their soon-to-be-grandson. I thought the Kerry Blue (from Martha Waterman's "Traditional Knitted Lace Shawls") would do it - it's quick (ish), it's mindless (ish), it looks fine. I made one recently using King Cole 4-ply machine washable 100% wool that I got from Texere Yarns. This yarn is available in about 40 colours and while I enjoyed knitting with it the last time, it wasn't exactly like butter in the hand. Don't get me wrong - it's not rough, or scratchy by any stretch of the imagination but pre-blocking it looked like a pile of ACK-rylic poo. However, let me tell you - the blocking made all the difference. I know blocking lace is like waking the Sleeping Beauty, but this was something else. The thing was transformed - it became light, airy, had a beautiful drape, just amazing! There could well be other shawls, in other colours, in this yarn in future. But for now I'm sticking to cream.

Here's the start:

 Kerry Blue start

Yes, it's Emily Ocker's circular start. I can't be bothered to give the link to the instructions and pictures again - Google really is your friend.

Here's the progress so far:

Kerry Blue on  tree

This is about forty rounds in and looking, well, very similar to the last one. It's good TV knitting though - every second round is plain knit, sometimes there is another plain knit round between the pattern rounds, later there will be the odd purl round (and I really don't mind purling), so it will be accompanying me throughout the European Athletics Championships.

It has come to my notice that Lucia over at The Diet Diary is having a competition. It's all to do with knitting blogs and there are various categories - funniest, best lace blog, best blog with a cat and so on. Am I touting for you to go on over to the nominations form and nominate me? No, of course not, never entered my head, couldn't have been further from my mind, not at all (you could create a new category - knitter with the most swollen head - and nominate me there).


Mary-Lou said...

If it helps, I attacked the joins on a pair of Inox circs recently with an emery board, and it worked surprisingly well

Diane Armstrong said...

Shipston had some Addi Turbos last time I was there, they were on the table in their new big upstairs wool room. Web of Wool in Leamington also have them and clover bamboo circs, which are lovely and smooth.Good Luck with the search.

Philippa said...

Maybe you could get your shawl-swapping American friend to post you on some Knitpicks needles? Or you could try the HiyaHiya needles mentioned here: http://www.grumperina.com/knitblog/archives/2006/06/needle_whore.htm

I'm sure you've seen the campaign afoot to persuade Addi to make pointy lace needles, but I'm guessing you won't be prepared to wait that long.

Sarah said...

Well, if you're interested in making a deal with a random American, I'm planning on placing a knitpicks order shortly, and I've actually been wanting some needles in British sizes. I could get you an options pack and we can sent presents across the water, if you'd like.

Email me if you're interested; there's an email link on my blog.

Off to read the rest of your entries - I just found your blog today.


allene said...

i enjoyed reading your blog-i am from the USA and have cats and dogs who seem to like my knitting. I will be reading your blog and see how everything goes.

allene hancock