|strictly speaking, I'm using circular needles here to knit a flat piece of knitting, but it is so comfortable and look how much knitting I can get on the needles!|
Earlier this week I finally learned to do something which has been on my 'knitting to do' list for ages - knit with circular needles. This is something that I have wanted to do for so long because there is actually a finite number of things to be knitted on straight needles, but now I say NO MORE to avoiding patterns on Ravelry that state they are 'in-the-round' - I am a liberated knitter!
That was a super geeky thing to type, and strictly speaking I could already knit in the round on double pointed needles, but I really am so excited that I now know how to use the mysterious contraptions that are circular needles, and even know that wondrous technique that is the 'magic loop', particular after friend B and ladies at my knitting group all go on about how much easier circular needles are to use.
So this is all leading up to me sharing with you how I learnt to do this (as a mostly self-taught knitter using the wonders of the internet!) so that if you want to learn too, you can.
|image my own of product purchased from Amazon|
First things first, you will need some circular needles to work with. As I was looking for as large of range of sizes as possible - because who knows what exciting knitting adventures we will go on as we grow up - I bought this set of 18 bamboo circular knitting needles. I did so because I saw last month that the lovely Elise over on Foof and Faff had bought a set, and from further enquiries on Twitter she said they were worth the pennies.
So far I have transferred a diabolically difficult scarf onto a set of these, and learned how to knit a tube on another pair, and for the £3.20 that you pay for the lot - yes, you read that correctly, £3.20 - I think that this set is worth it, particularly for a beginner circular knitter. Just be prepared for some sticking of your knitting as you often find with new needles, but nothing that can't be worked through, and I am in no hurry to spend more money on needles.
|my next project to cast on! a hat for a christmas present|
Using circular needles is as easy as pie(patronising alert..but I like the term so much) if you want to work a large project flat, you simply carry on like you normally would with straight needles and the plastic connector (technical term alert..) will carry the weight of your knitting, which actually makes it more comfortable to hold the work in progress - bonus!
However if you want to knit in the round you will need a teacher or a good online tutorial. After some quick googling I came across this absolutely perfect lesson for using the magic loop technique, for when your knitting is too small for the length of your needles. Tin Can Knits have an easy photo step-by-step guide on how to knit with the magic loop which I picked up on the first run through, and would heartily recommend. And the best part is that it is easily transferable if you are knitting something larger and don't need to magic loop, you simply knit in the round continuously, marking your rounds with a stitch marker.
I'm really looking forward to making lots and lots of things with all my circular needles - but I do have one problem now, how do I store them all neatly? Any hints or tips?