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Knitting with double pointed needles – what should I buy??

March 6th, 2010 · 8 Comments · Knitting Double

I hardly ever knit in the round with DPNs. I love my dozens of circs. But sometimes there’s just no alternative, and I’m always kicking myself for having only one or two sizes at home when I need them. So I’m off to order sizes 0 to 3 online, but there are so many kinds! Plastic, bamboo, birch, steel… HELP!

I use Clover bamboo needles. You might have seen them they have a green package. I really like the bamboo dp normally I’m using a soft yarn for mittens and the yarn doesn’t slip like with the steel needles. I feel like I have a better grip with them. If I’m using a chunky yarn I go back to the steel.

That being said, I have no problem with plastic needles at all. I still have a set I used to use as a child. They’re a little bent and have gone from white to grey. But they can hold a stitch and are very light to hold (like the bamboo).

If you’re doing mittens or baby booties I think you’ll like the bamboo.

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8 responses so far ↓

  • 1 truthseeker909 // Mar 6, 2010 at

    The type of needles you want will depend on a couple of things.

    First, if you have regular single-point needles, do you prefer plastic, bamboo, birch, steel…

    Next, if you travel by airplane, I would suggest NOT using any metal needles. Depending on the airport you start from and your destination, metal needles may not be allowed on board.

    Also, cost can be a factor. For the most part, the steel needles are very cost efficient; they last a long time. Bamboo and birch can be costly to start with, and if they somehow break or split, or the tips become too worn, it may cause problems. Plastic needles are inexpensive, fairly flexible, and are generally considered "safe" for when travelling. Flexibility of the plastic needles may work well for you if you tend to make the tension of your stitches tight.

    Personally, I prefer the steel needles. The bamboo and birch are okay, and they are very smooth, but I only ever owned one pair, and the tips became worn well before I expected them to. I only use plastic when I’m not "allowed" to use the steel needles.
    References :

  • 2 mickiinpodunk // Mar 6, 2010 at

    It depends on what fiber you tend to knit with most. For acryllics or other man-made yarns any type of needle works well, but natural fibers tend to be very slippery on metal and plastic needles. Bamboo and wood needles have more texture or tooth to their surfaces and hold on to slippery fibers far better and don’t slide out of the work. I have a lot of birch needles, including 0’s which are no longer available, and have never had them break or splinter, although it is possible for them to do so, in regular use.
    References :
    I have been knitting for 53 years.

  • 3 knitting_time@att.net // Mar 6, 2010 at

    After a lot of experimentation, I adore my nickel-plated DPNs from KnitPicks. I also have one of their 40" circulars, also nickel.

    I haven’t tried their harmony wood needles, but have tried Lantern Moon Sox Stix in rosewood. Those were nice to start – lots of grip – but now that I’m "more experienced" (that means I’ve messed up more things – discovered more of what NOT to do!) I prefer the more slippery, faster nickel.

    AND the knitpicks needles are all about $5-7 per set – what a bargain! You can try both wood and nickel for less than a set of Sox Stix!
    References :
    http://www.knitpicks.com

  • 4 Mary M // Mar 6, 2010 at

    I use Clover bamboo needles. You might have seen them they have a green package. I really like the bamboo dp normally I’m using a soft yarn for mittens and the yarn doesn’t slip like with the steel needles. I feel like I have a better grip with them. If I’m using a chunky yarn I go back to the steel.

    That being said, I have no problem with plastic needles at all. I still have a set I used to use as a child. They’re a little bent and have gone from white to grey. But they can hold a stitch and are very light to hold (like the bamboo).

    If you’re doing mittens or baby booties I think you’ll like the bamboo.
    References :

  • 5 stickwitch // Mar 6, 2010 at

    After many pairs of socks and countless dropped stitches, I decided to try Boye Baleen dpns. They made my day. The points are narrow, but rounded and the yarn doesn’t slip off when you don’t want it to.
    References :

  • 6 Cheryl S // Mar 6, 2010 at

    I like to use KnitPick metal DPN. They are slick, but really nice.
    References :

  • 7 MariLynn R // Mar 6, 2010 at

    I prefer knitting with bamboo or birch. Wood seems to be warm to the touch, and won’t aggrevate my tendonitis. Metal is hard and unforgiving. I primarely knit socks, so Im always working with dpn’s. 0-3’s are good to have, also I’ve found that 4’s and 5’s are good to have as well if you want to knit mittens or baby hats (with a heavier yarn).
    I hope this helps somewhat! Happy Knitting!!

    Mari-Lynn R.
    El Cajon, CA
    References :

  • 8 Katie Rose // Mar 6, 2010 at

    I wouldn’t switch to dpns if you love your circulars. Anything can be knitted using 2 circular needles, even the tiny stuff. http://www.knittinghelp.com has an excellent tutorial on using 2 circs–this is not "magic loop" knitting–the technique requires two sets of circs in the size you want. I write all my patterns for this technique. (fibersmarts.blogspot.com)
    References :
    http://www.knittinghelp.com

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