Saturday, February 24, 2007

Big excitement yesterday, then disillusion, then renewed interest…

I learned from Grumperina (whose blog I regularly read) that Skacel, the Addi Turbo people, have been induced to bring out a lace needle. It’s got to be wonderful, with that matchless Addi Turbo join – one spends an awful lot of time, in lace knitting, easing the stitches over the join. I don’t entirely mind, but it takes time.

The new Addi laces have got a sharper point than other Addi Turbo’s, too, but not so sharp, apparently, that they draw blood. That’s important, too.

Hence, big excitement.

Then I examined the Skacel page carefully, and discovered that the smallest gauge for the new needles is 2.5mm. My dear Princess is being knit on a 2.25. Would the difference matter? It’s less than a needle size. But I simply wouldn’t dare take the chance, would I?

Hence, disillusion.

But I feel stouter-hearted this morning. Perhaps I’ll pose the question to the Heirloom Knitting group.

Meanwhile the Calcutta Cup ’06 sleeve progressed. A couple more evenings should see it done.


I should have introduced before now the new websites in the “Who’s Who in the Family” section over there in the sidebar.

My nephew Theo, one of my most faithful readers, has started a “family blog” to which he and his parents contribute. I hope it prospers, and I expect to learn a lot.

My daughter-in-law Catherine Sampson has launched her own website. As I remember it, James rushed out and secured the URL as soon as she signed her first contract with Macmillan’s. That was three or four years ago: this is its first appearance in action, heralding the publication of her third thriller this coming summer. The website is full of interesting things, and good pictures. Have a look.

Even Less Knit

Today is a big rugby day, with all six nations playing. That means that one of the more interesting matches, France v. Wales, will be played entirely at night, kickoff 8 p.m. GMT which is presumably even later in France. I deeply disapprove.

Italy are here in Edinburgh. Scotland ought to win. The best match of the day could turn out to be Ireland v. England in Dublin. Because the rugby stadium is being revamped, they will play in “Croke Park”, a place with a nationalist history. There could be protests before people with long memories let “God Save the Queen” be sung there. The match itself could be good. Ireland have a real chance. Normally, I’m happy to see England beaten at anything, but I have Feelings about Irish nationalism which weigh on the other side today.


  1. Jean, apparently KnitPicks have brought out some new circular needles (not the Options set) which are the bee's knees for lace knitting.

    I saw one last week and felt I really needed to have some of these in my life, as I also spend too much time easing stitches over joins.

    Don't you have a pusher/enabler in the States who could send/bring them over? Perhaps the Koigu courier?

  2. Anonymous2:26 PM

    PLEASE root for Ireland. It's a big day here and we're hoping there are no unpleasant incidents.

  3. I would not change needle size. 0.25 of a centimeter does not sound like much. It does make a big difference in gauge.

  4. Anonymous3:05 PM

    Actually this courier has some KnitPicks needles on order to bring along to the UK. I haven't tried them myself but thought the various knitters I was meeting might be interested in them...I've heard nothing but good about them.

    I also have some of the Lace Addis on order but they weren't available quite yet...they are expected in the shops soon. From what I've read they have a coating over the brass, not nickel and a little rough, so they aren't as slick as the Turbos. Personally, I'm not a big fan of lace knitting on slick needles so I'm looking forward to trying the Addis.

  5. Anonymous3:22 PM

    Jean, I think the incident you are referring to is the following, which I have lifted straight from Wikipedia: British police auxiliaries entered the ground, shooting indiscriminately into the crowd killing 13 during a Dublin-Tipperary football match. The dead included 12 spectators and one player, Michael Hogan. The latter, Tipperary's captain, gave his name posthumously to the Hogan stand built four years later in 1924. These shootings, on the day which became known as Bloody Sunday, were a reprisal for the assassination of 14 British Intelligence officers, known as the Cairo Gang, by Michael Collins' squad earlier that day.

    So what exactly is your problem with the Irish?

  6. Anonymous4:00 PM

    21 points in six minutes.... Jean, I hold you ENTIRELY responsible. It's half time, and we are now at 24:10. I don't know if I dare watch the rest of it!
    I don't mind who wins the other games, but I do like the Irish anthem, which always sounds so hopeful and much better than our dirge!

  7. Anonymous8:20 PM

    Darn it and phooey. I'd heard about the Addi lace needles a while back, and the one question I had was whether they were going to have a 2.25 or not, since I don't think Addi does in the regular line, IIRC.

    Phooey. I was hoping this would be the lace needle Eldorado or somesuch.

  8. Anonymous8:50 PM

    Laritza is right, don't switch needles. 0.25 makes a difference even in sock yarn, according to several bloggers who had used mismatched needles. I think EZ said she could adjust the knitting tension to knit larger, if the needles were too small, but even she would have had trouble trying to use a larger needle to knit smaller.

    Of course, the new needles could be used for a different project.

  9. Anonymous1:34 AM

    Jean, I'm with you on the disappointment about the new Addi sizing starting at 2.5. And the KnitPicks circulars come in 2.0 and 2.5, not 2.25 (they do come in 3.0, which I often need, and 3.25). BUMMER. I am always looking for good, smaller needles. I knit *loosely.* It's a good thing, but causes needle problems! I'm frequently on 1.5 and 1.75. Addi Turbos come in 1.5 circular. For the 1.75, I've been using straight steels from Lacis.

  10. oh i have a penchant for the irish. never ever have i met nicer people when traveling. i was so taken with the language, the sweetness and everything. i expect cottish people to be very much the same. met a few at work lately and i adore the language as well. but this is of course from a tourist's point of view.