Monday, October 5, 2009

round and round we go

circulars. dpn's. when knitting in the round, what is your preferential tool?

i've mentioned the wanted to learn magic loop before. as always, someone in the knitting blogosphere was willing to share. the generous leslie sent me her unused booklet. she bought it thinking she'd teach herself... sometime. well, sometime turned into "not yet, and it's been a while!" so it made its postal journey across the country.

i tried. i tried really hard. and i discussed it here. not in depth, but discuss it i did. but i failed. in the end, i ripped the sock off the circular, threw it on dpn's and went to work. of course i thought of old dogs and new tricks, and decided that whatever method was successful for me was the method i was going to stick with. (and let's be honest: if a fabulous knitter like leslie doesn't feel the call to learn the magic loop, why should i?)

fast forward 18 months. last week, while on a chartered bus, i learned that there is a serious benefit to knitting socks (or whatever) on circulars: you cannot drop your needle and lose it when it rolls to the very front, very back, or in the crack of a 60-seat bus filled with fourth and fifth grade students who will gawk and point if you crawl around on the floor.

thankfully, i had brought a few extra dpn's, as i planned to knit the cuffs of both Mystery Sock '09 socks, and complete the first clue for the month. Mystery Sock KAL is my favorite. i participated last year and really loved the socks i ended up with at the end of it all. this year, i dug through the stash, hoping that kirsten will again provide a great pattern that looks divine in a semi-solid.

dream in color smooshy, gothic rose

on a whim, i bought a 12" addi turbo in a US 9 to work the sleeves of my february lady sweater. i had size 9 dpn's but i was really loving the ease of a circular throughout the body of the sweater, and although at the time i didn't know i'd use it again so soon, i'm glad to have it. i am using it to knit laurel a pair of phenomenon mittens (ravelry link) for halloween, when she dresses up as bella from twilight.

so am i a circular convert? i don't know that yet; however, i do know that i'm going to give the magic loop another whirl.

if for nothing else, it will keep me off my hands and knees on the floor of a bus.


Nic said...

I have to admit I'm a DPN person - even on busses - and yes, I've done the scrabbling under seats thing too!

I'm knitting the Through The Loops socks too - mine are a hot pink!

t does wool said...

hmmm, a dilemma for sure.. I'll be interested in seeing if you convert.
I know many who love the circular method,many who don't.

Nancy said...

I learned how to knit socks on two circular needles, so that is the method that I prefer. I've tried double points, but they are too fussy for me, so I will stick with the circulars. I've wanted to try Magic Loop, but when I saw a video online, I decided to stick with my two circulars.

Hilary said...

I do prefer using circulars in theory (mostly due to the crawling around the floor of a bus thing :) ), but I can't always get the hang of it. Some days I can do it, some days I can't, and I can't really figure out a pattern. Good luck with your own circular endeavors!

Kristyn Knits said...

looks like you have a lot on your needles (whichever you choose)!

Ally Johnston said...

Both have their place. I love circs for skirts and some sweaters, but have to say I love dpns for the socks, not that I've done many socks. I just can't quite get magic loop. still we are constantly learning right!

kim said...

I never really got good with dpn's and was so grateful when I finally learned Magic Loop. I think if it were easier to cast on, I'd be fine with them. Your sock is so pretty, and those mittens are perfect for Fall.

Alison said...

I'm a 2 circular girl, myself, and I love, love, love the method, though I am still quite handy with the old double points, if I may say so myself...
I haven't gotten around to trying the magic loop, but, as I seem to have an insatiable need to try to conquer most anything, I'm sure I will try it soon- let me know if you convert!

Happy knitting-

Catherine said...

First of all excuse my english, I am french, and I am very found of thoses marvellous knitting blogs I can read on the net especially from USA, UK or Finland.
My knitter's life changed when I discovered the circular knitting needles! For socks I prefer the 2 cicular needles method. Very easy! My preferential tools are the Knipicks needles (made of wood) Of course it depends of how you have learn to hold the needles when you first learned to knit. For example my mother in law holds the rigth needle under her arm, so she does'nt like circular needles. The tip is too short for her.
Congratulation for your beautiful blog (great colors and yarns!)

Sandy said...

i think i'm a mediocre knitter (at best), and have no idea which is better for me. i jump fomr dpn's to circular for different projects.
i love the look of those mittens, though.

Anonymous said...

The magic loop scares me too. However I have tried two socks on two circulars and liked that method. I think I'm going to try my next pair of socks on one circ so than I can decide if I like two socks on two socks, one sock on circs or dpn the best.

Peggy said...

You seem like a sock expert, so I've got a question for you. What size needles do you generally knit your socks on? I'm embarking on my first real pair (on size 2s)and it seems like they are going to end up too loose and therefore slouchy. Do knitted socks actually stay up? Thanks!

Nicolle Durkee said...

I have knit many things on DPNs over the years. I was itching to try magic loop, so I went to my local yarn store (Spinning Yarns in Dover, NH) and the amazing owner Margot showed me right then and there. I am currently on my 2nd pair of Bella Mittens, making both mittens at the same time on a 40" circular - it's amazing! I haven't tried it with socks yet, but that's my next step - I have a book for it and I think it'll help that I already understand the concept. So my suggestion to you is to find someone who already knows how to do it (perhaps someone at your LYS) and ask them to show you. I always find it easier to learn things by being shown anyway. Also, if you haven't checked out all of the knitting tutorials on youtube, you should! They are so handy, I use it as a reference all the time!