Thursday, May 13, 2010

That "Another Post" Hiya Hiya Review

So, I'm talking to Always Alice on the phone yesterday and she says "You haven't used them yet"!!! The enabling that woman is resposible for is just monumental. :-), I have to find "something" to knit to try out the needles.  "Something" has to be quick because I'm really deep into knitting SarahBeth for my GD Sarah Elizabeth.

I picked Cowboy booties....which is actually Cowboy Booty (1) at the moment.  I got the pattern from one of Alice's Just a Few and the blog seems to have disappeared so I can't link you to the pattern.
Of course this took longer than I had planned.  I only planned an evening and I spent last evening and half of this day on this one booty. Mostly on re-design points and tweaking the pattern.

At any rate, I used Caron Simply Soft (called for in the pattern) and size 4 needles.  The one thing that I notice right off about the needles is that they weigh nothing in your hands. (They are hollow). The next thing is that the 4" needle feels a little different in my hand and I was trying to decide if it was uncomfortable or just different. The yarn slides over the needle quickly and smoothly and anyone who has trouble with poking holes in their fingers would enjoy these needles.  The rounded end on these needles would help with the sore finger problem.  I don't have that poking problem so the point isn't a plus for me and on this project not a minus either.  I liked the tips just fine.  Lace will be the true test, but I think the tips are plenty thin enough on the smaller needles especially for lace.

I did have trouble with the needles coming unscrewed from the cable. Several times. There's no key to tighten it and contrary to the reviews that I had read that they were adding a rubber grip to tighten the needles, one was not included in my package. Once I became aware that it was going to be a problem, I would just check the connection after several rows or if I felt a drag when the yarn was sliding over the connection. I do have some little rubber grips that came with my Boye sets and I will use one the next time I use these needles to see if it helps keep them tightened. I do think that the shortened needles are perfect for knitting in the round especially when you use the shorter length cord. 

 By the time I got to the end of the little boot project, I was comfortable with the shorter length, but I think I would prefer a bit longer. I don't think the Knit Picks are quite 5" which is what is offered in this brand, but I think I may buy a couple of 5" just to see if I like them better. I love the flexible thin cords on these needles. But, having said that - these needles {from this one test ride} would not be my first choice if I could only have one set.  Knit Picks are still on top for me. But, I love these for augmentation to what I already have.  A girl needs choices and the right tools for a project always makes a big difference in the enjoyment factor and product.

So, I was concentrating so hard on the detailing and top stitching on this boot that I had a lapse in "puppy vigilence".  One cannot have these lapses or "yarn vomit" can happen.  They can't help themselves. 
You see that there isn't a dog to found in this picture.  Oh No, they have fled the scene with their "Not Me" eyes.  But, if they only knew...all Mom can see is "Lying Eyes".

A couple more views of the singular boot.  It was fun and now I'm over it. This "bootie" is bigger than most and has much more detailing. I usually don't get SSS with booties..but I'm really just wanting to knit on Sara Beth right now.  Maybe the next time I knit in the car, I'll make the second bootie.  Or...this will become a really cute Christmas Tree ornament!
Meanwhile, this one will lounge out by the pool to enhance it's natural red hue.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Hiya Hiya Happy Merry!

Imagine my surprise when I checked the mail today and there were the Hiya Hiya Needles. Happy Merry to me! That was FAST! When I opened the package and pulled out wrapped tissue paper, I thought that only one set had arrived because it was so light and flat. But...both were there. The red is mine and the blue is going to my sistah, Always Alice for her birthday on June 16th. Happy Birthday to her! She will get them early, but I told her she needed to practice her "ooooh ahhhh, SURPRISE!" look. :-)

This is how they come - pouch, needles and cords all in their own individual packages. Lots of unwrapping to do. The good thing is there are lot of little zip lock bags you can save to ....well, say...drop your jewelry in to take the repair shop. You don't have to ask me how I know these things would come in handy for that.
Here are my needles 2-8 all tucked away in their little place. Plenty of room to add more needles should I find that they knit as well as they look.
I tucked away the cords still in their zip lock pouch in the back zipper pocket on the back. They fit well with no bulk.

Here the front of the case filled and closed. And so pretty. Did I say I LOVE the pouch these needles come in?
The back of the case, fully packed and still very compact and lightweight. It still has room for more "stuff" in the top inside pocket and more needle tips should I find I love these needles as much as I love the case they are stored in. But that will be another post. :-)

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Vintage Knitting Needles

We have been discussing needle sets on my LSSK yahoo group and a rash of us have made a run on a Hiya Hiya set seeing as we have just about every other set out there. We are a group of women that wear the handle "Needle Ho" and don't mind it. Of course we can also put Yarn in front of that Ho as well, but that would be another post. What started it all was one of my Gals, Laura is in the market for a set and wanted to know what our favorites were. Most of us had several favorites and discussion ensued and then a poll and lots of scrambling to buy out the Hiya Hiyas because Kareena mentioned that these were her favs over Knit Picks and we just had to know HOW any needle could be better than Knit Picks. (Nice, long run on sentence, don't you think?) OK, so, the hunting and gathering was on!

It made me take inventory of all the sets I did have and I realized I have some OLD ones. I have my mother's needle set from the 60's which was just like the Boye, but it has the Sears name on it. She took lessons at Sears and possibly Boye made them for Sears and put their name on it. They have size 2-15 and while I doubt I'll ever use them, I will never part with them so I need to tell my DIL Linda just what a treasure they are. Poor thing. My only knitter and the shepherdess of the stash.

Look at the lovely 60's green and yellow flower case. LOL!

I bought several sets of old Boye's on Ebay to get some extra cords for Mom's set and for nostalgic reasons that I can remember now. :-O I have 4 more with cases like this in different patterns and probably from the 70's although they only go from 6-15 in needle size.

I did find an unusual case in my collecting. I thought it quite unusual and this must have been from the 80's since it had the skinny nylon cords instead of thick white cords.

I do have the modern day Boye set - mine and Mom's plus both of our Denise sets. I bought my DDIL Linda a set of Denise and she loves them. I need to see if she would like to branch out into metals as I have so many to share. :-)