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October 24, 2008

You've got questions, I have a lot of words which seem like answers but might be chocolate

I've been looking at the knit picks interchangeable Harmony wood circular needle set, and I was wondering if you have used it or if you've heard anything about it. It would be way cool to have an entire set of circulars and just change out the needles - but is it really that easy? Is the transition needle to cable actually smooth, or would they just be frustrating, and I'm better off buying individual circular needles as I need them? I guess need is relative - but as I want them?

Thanks!
Kristine

Hi Kristine,
I have heard nothing but great reviews for the Harmony Wood interchangeable circular needles from KnitPicks.com. I haven't used them myself but I have used the straight needles and they're smooth as butter. After the first of the year I plan to buy myself the circular set as a little port-Christmas, Happy New Year's gift to myself, so I'll let you know how they work!

- - -

Hi Laurie,

Here's my problem. I'm a mostly new knitter and can knit a scarf like nobody's business. If is a long rectangle, I can knit it. I am afraid to try anything else! Plus, I live in South Florida and can only wear so many scarves or other knit items and I'm sick of mailing my creations to friends in the Midwest. I'm afraid my beautiful handiwork is being stuffed in a closet someplace.

Any suggestions for branching out and getting to enjoy my own finery?

Best,
Brook

Hi Brook!
I truly deeply understand this dilemma, as I too can knit scarf after scarf ad scarf infinitum. Most people don't know that the Valley is really a big ol' desert and we get hundred-degree days regularly at least half the year. The one thing we do get -- which is a rarity in South Florida -- is cold night temperatures. Evenings in the summer even get chilly, down into the low 60-degree range, and in the winter months it hovers around 35 degrees most nights in the Valley, so those scarves and hats do get used after dark.

This is probably the only reason I like living here, if it were hot year-round all the time I would just melt. I'm a polar bear, I love cold weather.

But you did not ask about my predilictions with the temperature, you asked about knitting. There are a lot of things you can branch out with -- hats, socks, you could even take your love of squares and rectangles one step further and make a blanket for your bed. But if I were you I'd start exploring the world of hand-knit purses! There are tons of great books out there with purse and beach-bag and tote and backpack designs all meant for knitters. You can also felt your knitting and make a beautiful felted handbag.

I know that breaking out of the rectangle is a radical step, it took me a looong time to do it myself, but little accessories (hats, socks, mittens) aren't terribly time consuming and even more detailes accesories like purses and bags can be fast, easy and they make great gifts!

Then again, you could just keep knitting scarves. I do. Three of my last four projects have been scarves. I give them to friends in colder climates, give them to readers, give them to other knitters. What they do with it afterwards is up to them! I think just the activity of knitting is what I enjoy so I'm not that attached to the final outcome.

Posted by laurie at October 24, 2008 9:26 AM