My favourite knitting needle for Magic Loop - ChiaoGoo Red Lace!
One of my firm beliefs is that, whatever you do, using the right tools is essential.
This goes for so many crafts. Baking .. don’t ask me how many tools I have, how many high-quality, heirloom cookie cutters, professional-grade baking forms and spoons and spatulas, sugar thermometers hardly ever used - the collection (and the space needed to store it!) is huge. It is something my Dad taught me, when we were working on the old farm house he had bought during my university years - there was so much to do and renovate, and using the right, high-quality tools did get you a long way towards success.
The same goes for knitting. And the essential tool, the knitting needle.
Here again, the number of knitting needles I have is endless. I’m definitely a collector, so when I started taking knitting up again, when my first kid was little, I went on a shopping spree and bought so many different versions, to see and try and learn what suits me best. The selection close-by was not huge, just the same big-brand label that every craft shop around here has in the knitting section. It was ok to begin with, but did show its limitations pretty quick.
At first I went for the interchangeable needle sets, it seemed to make sense. Different needle sizes, different cable lengths, and off you go, you’re covered, knit whatever you fancy.
It was ok for some time. Then I started knitting more demanding patterns, finer yarns, singles. And those interchangeable needles just didn’t cut it anymore. They kept unscrewing, the lace yarn kept snagging, I was being more and more unhappy.
And then I discovered the perfect tool for me, my favourite way of knitting: using the Magic Loop with a long, fixed circular needle! Perfection! Suddenly; I was doing all kind of projects using the same-length needle, from socks to hats to large lace shawls. And the perfect needle was soon found as well: the ChiaoGoo Red Lace circular needle! And the fun and satisfaction was back!
To me, these needles are perfect. The stainless steel Red Lace have straight, smooth, pointy tips that are perfect if you do more complicated lace knitting operations, like K3tog .. but they’re not too sharp to split delicate yarn like Siide-Nobel either, be it singles or something like Siide-Fluffig, with mohair - so you can use it for all your knitting projects! And I love the cable, it is perfect for Magic Loop knitting as the nylon-coated multi-strand steel is soft and pliable and never ever kinks, it’s flexible with no memory. I don’t know if you have ever done Magic Loop, but if you have, you’ll know that this is essential!
I have been using my needles for years now, for so many different projects and still, the joint is flawless, no snagging at all. Something else I love: the needle size is laser-imprinted on the needle itself, both in US and metric size… have you had those as well, where the needle size is printed on the cable, and it has started to fade and wear off with use? So you always try to read the faded numbers to know what size these needles are? Not here!
So here they are, my favourite knitting needles, the sole content of my needle pouch: the one-goes-for-all 40in ChiaoGoo Red Lace circular, ideal for Magic Loop (a technique that I will have to do a blog post on soon as well!). But for those that prefer to knit hats in the round with no Magic Loop, the 16in Circulars are ideal as well. Small diameters for sock knitters will be added to the shop soon as well!
So, all I can say: happy knitting - go and get a pair of needles with your next yarn purchase and give it a try, I’m more than sure that you will love it!