After my posts from last week saying how few projects I like to have going at one time, at the moment I find myself with four projects in motion.
2. Retort Socks
The first one I started in the beginning of September at the Wisconsin Sheep & Wool Festival and have been working on here and there, but admittedly they are coming along slowly. This isn’t for lack of love — I am completely smitten — but life keeps getting in the way of significant progress on them. Sometimes that’s just how it goes. The Retort Socks, of course, are for the Knitter’s Pride Conversation Socks Knitalong that I wrote about a couple days ago. Mary, Millie, and Morgan are for my daughter’s birthday at the end of the month and since I’m trying to make it a surprise, I only work on this project in the evening after my girl goes to sleep. The Wayfarer Scarf though… this one has been on the needles for — gulp — nearly a year.
Having a project on the needles for a year is totally not my style. I am generally quite committed to my 6-month rule: if a project isn’t finished in 6months, I frog it or finish it. My Wayfarer Scarf has managed to skirt the rules though and there are a few reasons for this. First, I am absolutely sure this is the pattern for this yarn. I love it, I really do. Second, it is a scarf and I am terrible with scarves. I have a really, really, really hard time knitting them. They go on and on and there is nothing that changes throughout the project. It just make me so crazy. Third, it is charted. Now I don’t know anyone who loves charts quite as much as I do in knitting — I’m very, very visual in how I learn and navigate the world, so charts are totally my cup of tea. That being said, a charted scarf makes it difficult to work on on-the-go. It’s not as easy to pick up and set down. These points have landed this scarf squarely in knitting limbo. I won’t frog it because I want to finish, but I won’t finish it because just the idea makes me want to take a big ‘ol nap.
With the one year anniversary looming (the official start date is logged at November 8, 2013) I found myself motivated to make the scarf finishing happen, but I wanted to at least attempt to make it fun. I do try to make sure none of my knitting is a complete pain in the keister. Now usually I would never change needles mid-project and I certainly wouldn’t on a fitted item like socks or a sweater, but a scarf I was pretty comfortable doing so. I pulled out my brand new Knitter’s Pride Trendz Acrylic Needles Interchangeable Deluxe Set.
Now I certainly know my way around needle sets as I have a few, but every now and then I’m asked if I’d like to try a new one to review. To be clear, I am not paid for these reviews. The thoughts and opinions are my own and they are genuine — I wouldn’t have it any other way. I had read good things about these, but as almost any knitter who has been around the knitting needle block the words ‘acrylic needles’ immediately made me skeptical. Flashbacks to the less than awesome acrylics of the ’80s flooded back as I cringed. Having read the good reviews though and trusting the Knitter’s Pride brand to market good quality needles, I was actually pretty excited to try these out. So a couple days ago I knitted my Wayfarer Scarf onto them.
As with any needle change, it took me a couple rows to adjust. I did notice right away that they are super lightweight and very comfortable in my hands. The needle itself is tackier with the yarn than my metal needles as well as brand new bamboo, but unlike the grainy bamboo, stitches slide effortlessly across these babies. I found the tips to be comparable to an Addi Lace tip, maybe even just a bit sharper. With my scarf project, that’s a little more point than is ideal for me. I split the single yarn easily if I’m sloppy with my needle placement, but that is no knock on the needle at all — that’s my own issue. I think on 95% of projects, this point would be perfect for my needs and prove to be wonderfully versatile. As with the other Knitter’s Pride needles I’ve tried, the join (where the cable meets the needle) is nice and smooth and does not snag my yarn. Once going, I could not have been happier with the change to these needles. I have to say, as a knitter that owns interchangeable sets that are four times as expensive, I am really, really, really impressed. Bang for your buck, these are pretty darn nice! While the Trendz won’t replace my professional kits, I can guarantee there will be times I choose these needles over the others in my toolkit.
The Trendz Acrylic Needles Interchangeable Deluxe Set comes with the following:
9 pairs of Knitting Needles:
US Size 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 10.5, 11
(Metric Size (mm) 3.5, 3.75, 4.0, 4.5, 5.0, 5.5, 6.0, 6.5, 8.0)
24″ (60cm), 32″ (80cm), 40″ (100cm), 47″(120cm)
8 end caps, 4 cord keys
For those wondering, the end caps screw onto your cords to hold projects without fear of stitches slipping off (I just figured that out this morning – lol!) and the cord keys help you to tighten the needle/cord join. It is also worth noting that the Knitter’s Pride cords are universal, so the cords from this set will also work interchangeably with all the other Knitter’s Pride circular sets.
So who would I recommend this needle set to? Well, honestly anyone! Whether you are a knitting enthusiast who just enjoys trying new tools or a knitter who is looking for an extra set of needles (perhaps for travel) or a beginner looking for a first interchangeable set — the Trendz Interchangeable Set would be a great option for you. Beginners really come to mind though and I would strongly recommend it for this purpose. WEBS has this set available for $36.99, so it is a relatively modest investment for the large selection of needles & cords you get. Plus, I think the needles themselves would fit a beginner’s needs very well. The easy movement, yet tacky characteristics of the needles combined with the smooth join make these needles really easy to use. As a mother, with two young beginner knitters in the house, you can bet these will be in my kids’ hands, too. Besides, what young knitters wouldn’t love these fun colors!
All in all — and I almost can’t believe I’m saying it — but Knitter’s Pride has made an acrylic needle I can really get behind. These needles are comfortable in my hands, a fantastic deal, and have the potential to play a lot of different roles for a wide variety of knitters. From beginners to the seasoned vet, I think the Trendz Acrylic Needles Interchangeable Deluxe Set is a really great addition to anyone’s toolkit.