Opinion time

Dear all,

After my post I made a journey to Islington to the LYS there, Loop, to pick up The Bird Collection book mentioned in a last post (it turns out her new book – Finstickat – won’t be translated to English anytime soon, so thought I should grab the book while it was still at Loop. Things there move FAST).

My restraint slipped a bit, and though I was just supposed to get the book, here is what I came home with:

My question from the last post answered. I am going with the Robin:
Screen Shot 2013-01-24 at 21.34.31

They didn’t have the yarn recommended in the pattern, though they had a sample of the Robin jumper knit up in the Spinni wool, and it was VERY itchy. I decided I would substitute with the much softer Alpaca 1. The hue is still a desaturated pink, though more magenta than the one in the picture in the book – no. 61.
Now the recommended yarn is a 3 ply and this is a two ply, so both are very fine knitting, though this is finer, and I knew I would be pushing it a bit with the patience factor … but thought it might be good for me. A new level, so to speak.

That is until I cast on a swatch this morning and it took me nearly an hour to knit a 5×2 inch swatch. Gulp.
There is the 3mm swatch of pain with a new swatch cast on with 2.5mm, as I am not at gauge.

In red below is where I have picked up not only the stitch on the needle, but that below, as I am not used to knitting with yarn this fine.detail
And it is VERY fine for me and quite splitty.
Thing is, I am wondering if I am struggling so much because of a) the fact that knitting with needles this small and yarn so fine is terrifying me, b)the yarn is just too splitty.

Here is where I need some opinions. Those of you that have knit with teeny yarns- what do you think ? Should I tough it out and try to view this as a learning curve, or am I just setting myself up for an expensive fail?

This decision is a bit time sensitive, as I want to go back tomorrow or monday and get Isager’s Highland yarn for this if I give up (before it is GONE with London’s crazy lack of physical yarn shops)…so really stressing!

Help please? What are your opinions?


5 thoughts on “Opinion time

  1. If you can, I’d try swatching with a couple of different needles. I find that sometimes a needle with a sharper point makes it easier to knit with a splitty yarn.

    • Gail, you rock. I went back to the 2.5mm swatch which I’d abandoned out of frustration and those needles were a lot better. They are a little sharper and the yarn wasn’t splitting as much.

      I think you are right…it is the bluntness of the regular addi’s that is doing it. I might go pick up a lace set of circulars as my gauge seems right in between.

      Oh, and also think I might just be pulling a drama queen. I also reknit the 3mm and it went MUCH smoother (and the gauge totally changed). Think I just need practice.

      ;-? Panic over. Thank you!!

      • I’m probably committing blasphemy here, but I hate knitting with Addi needles! They are way too slippery for me, and as you say, the tips are too blunt. My preferred needles are bamboo: even though the tips aren’t very sharp, they have a grippiness that really helps things go more smoothly, even with splitty yarns.

        Glad the panic is over! The color of the yarn and the sweater are really pretty 🙂

  2. OK, I agree with Gail and I can totally relate to this because I’m knitting with the thinnest 2 ply cashmere right now and I’ve tried with bamboo and addis and the pointy addis (the lace ones) work much better. Knitting into the stitch below is a concern so you need to concentrate quite a bit (I know, it sucks). I can’t look away from the knitting for long while while working with this. However, I think the hairiness of your yarn may be contributing to the challenge. I imagine tinking would be very irritating as the stitches might stick to the working yarn as you go backwards. That would get tiring (she says having ripped back for 2 hours this morning – and only having done a total of 10 rows, albeit many of those rows were partially bound off when I started).

    When I knitted my first socks, I couldn’t deal with the US0 needles, but the US1s (practically the same, in the scheme of things) were so much better. I think some yarns just need some needle sizes when we add ourselves into the equation.

    • Thanks both. The slipperiness is a bit of an issue, as if I drop a stitch on this size it just disappears! Also, you’re right Kristin, frogging it is a right BITCH.

      2ply cashmere! Eeep. That sounds very fragile. Yes, I think paying attention is exactly what I am not doing – and have to. No watching tv/reading with this project. Not even sure if it will be ‘Tube knitting’ due to the concentration factor. We’ll see.

      I prefer the Addis regulars normally, as if I use anything too sharp (like Knitpro) I end up gouging a hole in my index finger after a few rows! (I am obviously doing something wrong…!)

      Think i will give it a try, though. Like you say, Gail – the yarn is so pretty, and the swatches have sucked me in.

      Wish me luck, ladies…and thanks for the help/support!

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