Friday, November 23, 2007

The Morning After

I spent the morning cleaning up the house after the little tornado known as Baby C. hit yesterday. Boy can he move fast! I had two boxes full of toys for him to play with while he was here, but he wasn't particularly interested in those, he went after the real knickknacks and other things that I have around the house. It took three adults to watch him, try to predict his moves, and grab things out of his reach before they got thrown on the floor and broken.

After I got the house back in shape, I kept on going and decided to organize my UFOs. I purchased KnitPicks Options needles last year and even though the set came with two 24-inch cables and two 32-inch cables, plus the two 40-inch cables I bought extra, I never seem to have the right size available when I need it. KnitPicks also provides little screw on caps so that you can use the cables as stitch holders and that was my downfall. I had so many unfinished projects on holders that there weren't any cables left to work on something new. (Yes, my mother tried to teach me to finish what I started before going on to something new, but sometimes I just can't resist.)

A couple of weeks ago I started the Maltese Shawl for my DiL on a 40-inch cable, the only one that was free, but that cable turned out to be too long and it was getting in the way. I wanted to switch to a 32-inch cable. The Opaque Sweater which was almost finished still needed one of the 32-inch cables and the back of Sorrel has been held on the other 32-inch cable since last winter. So I worked on the sweater until the cable was freed and then for some reason got out Sorrel to have a look at it. After I realized there were only a few rows to go before the back was finished, I went to work and got it done. Why is it that we put things off sometimes that really only need a few more minutes of concentrated effort to get completed?

When I worked on Sorrel last winter, I was having trouble with the yarn and finding which needles were best for working with it. The yarn is a one-ply Rowan Tapestry in a weird combination of soybean protein fiber and wool. It splits very easily. The Options needles were too pointy and split the yarn with every stitch. I tried bamboo and found that the yarn wouldn't slip and slide very easily with those. Today I discovered why. The size needle called for is a US6 and the pattern is from the UK where they use a 4mm needle. I only realized recently that the standard US6 is 4.25mm and my bamboo needles are this size while the Options size 6 is 4mm. The bamboo was not a perfect match. Why didn't somebody tell me?!! By luck, I recently purchased some Addi Turbos in size 6 just to try them and these are 4mm. Not only that, they are metal and therefore smooth, but are not as pointy as the Options. Perfect for Sorrel!!

Now if I could just find the size 10.5 needle tip that I seem to have misplaced...


  1. That's odd. I always thought the standard US 6 was 4 mm. I prefer the 4.25 mm instead of the US 7 which is normally a 4.5 mm.

    The only 4.25 mm needles I found were Plymouth bamboo.

    Where did you get your other 4.25 mm needles? I would like to get more.

  2. Takumi 6 Clover is 4.25mm. According to the chart at this site:

    the US 6 = 4.25 is the "Old US 6."