Don’t fear the Double Pointed Needles!


Howdy, howdy. It’s Tuesday, right? It’s sort of been a long weekend and Monday. Family pictures were a success–at least, I think they were. Everyone smiled and cooperated. So, yes, I suppose success. But getting everyone ready, clean, fed, napped, and together until the photographer arrived at our house was challenging. It was rill challenging, ain’t gonna lie. I needed a drink after it was all over. And the photographer even came to us–how do people travel with kids TO a photographer? People are so amazing.

Okay, I’m omitting the freakout I had for about 25 minutes on Saturday morning. I’d mentioned before that the baby was up during the night for awhile with a fever. Well, you can’t SEE fevers, so I wasn’t too terribly troubled. (Yes, yes. At the time all that mattered was How This Thing Was Going to Affect Family Pictures. Sad, I know.) But you CAN see a rash. And Simon woke up with a rash all over his face. Between Benadryl and the photographer’s assurances of the magical powers of Photoshop, my major fears were allayed. So. We shall see.

Do you want to hear about knitting? I don’t know who my audience is, really. I’m going to pretend you’re all me, or where I was, when I was starting out knitting. Okay.

DPNs. Do you know what those are? Double Pointed Needles. What the heck are those and why would any individual want to use them? Funny you should ask. It took me three or four tries of trying to cast on a little pair of legwarmers for Eliza onto the smallest circular needles I had before I realized it wasn’t going to work. Three or four tries. Looking back, I can cackle at my stupidity, but hey, how was I to know? The pattern I was following said to use circular needles, and to this day, I don’t know if the pattern was faulty or what, because I just don’t think there’s any possible way to knit legwarmers on circular needles unless they’re a neat pair of elephant legwarmers or something. Because they’re going to be too big.

Maybe I should back up. Basically, one would use dpns for when one is knitting in the round, and the circumference of the knit piece is small, like for a baby item, socks, or legwarmers. They usually come in sets of five needles, and you can knit off of either end, see?

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left: my Denise circular needles right: Stitchberry dpns

See the legwarmers started on the right? See the small circumference? Dpns. Can’t be done with circular needles.

So, I finally realized that I needed to bite the bullet and get some dpns, only I bought a set of metal ones from Walmart. Don’t do that, at least not when you’re first starting out. Since then, I got a set of dpns from Stitchberry that go all the way from the teeniest tiny size 0’s to size 13. They’re bamboo, which makes them really smooth and nice to hold. Highly recommend the Stitchberry dpns.

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While I’m talking about needles, if you’re looking to get a set of really good needles that aren’t dpns, you can’t beat a Denise set. David got me my set for Christmas two years ago. (Yeah, that’s right.) They’re great, And they don’t make that annoying clickety clack sound that annoys husbands during movies. So, another bonus!

I’m writing about dpns because I just cast on a pair of legwarmers for my friend’s daughter and it takes me back. Don’t be intimidated by them. They’re great! They take some time to get used to, but you’ll find that the types of things they allow you to knit makes up for the initial cumbersome aspect. The Knit Witch on YouTube has a bunch of great knitting tutorials, and I’m pretty sure she showed me how to use the dpns.

Today on the Farm: It’s a windy, cloudy, cold day. Harvest is at a standstill after yesterday’s 2.60″ of rain.Β Β I suppose I should make some soup. And do some laundry. There’s allllways laundry.

Tell me about your first experience with dpns–I’d love to hear all about it!


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