Knitting with hot hands. A solution to squeaky needles!

It seems like forever ago that I've been here.  Perhaps the fact that I've been so keen to pop in and share my progress with my knitting and have been called to give my attention to umpteen other things has made time pass more slowly between posts.

Anyway, here I am.  I am feeling a bit pleased with myself.  For you see I have made not one but two, yes two knitted items already this year!  Granted they are only tiny but they are knitted and they are complete! 

The first of these is the Puerperium cardigan from Ravelry.  This link  should take you to the Ravelry page but you will more than likely have to register (all free) to access the pattern.  If the link doesn't work just google 'Puerperium Cardigan' to find it.

The second of my finished projects (which was actually my first project) is the Pebble Vest from The Thrifty Knitter.  I saw this vest on Soulemama's blog a while ago and thought it looked like it might possibly be an achievable first project for me. 
These projects may be tiny but they were a really exciting way of re-learning and practicing my knitting skills.  I made sure I picked a nice wool yarn in a colour I loved so that the whole process would be as enjoyable as I could make it. The cardigan involved using double pointed needles (which was totally new to me) and picking up stitches.  The vest required me to learn how to do the kitchener stitch and to make button holes.  I can see on the vest where my tension changed when I had a break and came back to my knitting but it wasn't so obvious on the cardigan.

One of the reasons I've never been a keen knitter is that I have hot hands that get clammy at times, especially in hot weather, when I'm handling yarn and when I'm stressing over getting a pattern right.  And hot clammy hands make metal knitting needles squeak like heck and make your work stick.  Eughh!  This has often meant that I've had to try various methods of drying my hands, none of which really solved the issue and the more I fret about it the more my hands get sweaty and the problem gets even worse.  It makes knitting a real chore for me and there have been many a none completed item due to 'the hands issue'.  So that is why I have never really got into knitting - it was just too much of an effort.  
So when I was making the vest, I got trough a fair bit of it before the 'hands issue' started making my needles squeak, setting my teeth on edge and making my hands even more clammier and I wondered whether I might need to put down the pins until Winter arrived.  But then I thought about how when I use a bamboo crochet hook I never have any issues and I wondered to myself whether bamboo knitting needles existed.  Hmmmm ...  So off I zoomed to Spotlight and invested in a pair of 4mm bamboo beauties.  And guess what?  They made the clammy hands issue an non-issue!  Hooray!

I was just so happy that I was able to solve the 'hands issue' and feel that I can no longer tell myself that I am a hopeless knitter.  I also have no excuses not to knit now, which is excellent.  It has been like learning to read; I feel like a whole new world of possibilities has opened up to me.

And what's more I'm raring to go again and get another project on the go. 


Coal Valley View said...

These are fabulous Jo - just perfect! I've upgraded to the bamboo needles too because they are slightly lighter and save my hands from aching. I enjoyed doing the Pebble too but sadly the little man is already outgrowing it at just 6 weeks of age. You're fast - only the 2nd week of Jan so you'll get through your list of 30 in no time at this rate :-) Mel x

thefemalemunich said...

the bamboo needles look pretty too!

Susan C. said...

Well done on the knitting, it was one of my first crafts that I enjoyed a lot. Your description of squeaky needles and hot hands and clammy stress due to squeaky needles made me laugh, I bet you never had really hot hands until you endured the Australian summer...though they tell me England does get humid. Still one does wonder how you can even think of knitting at this time of year, :-) it makes my hands even hotter! :-)

Jo said...

The Pebble is tiny isn't it Mel, I bet your little man looked adorable in it. I was just over on your blog and in the Linkedin section at the end of your post was a pic of your Pebble in pretty much the same colour! I do so love that colour! When I was buying the wool, I did wonder whether the charcoal was a bit of a dark choice for a baby but I was glad to see you had chosen the same colour for your vest.

Kim, the I'm a total convert now to the bamboo needles, At $5 a pair and $7 for a set of double pointers I think a few of my next projects will be done in 4mm.

Susan, I've always had hot hands; both my sister and I have the same curse! I really look forward to doing some more knitting now that I can knit in any weather!

Kimberley Atkinson said...

A new follower. I am a mad knitter - was knitting socks n gorgeous bamboo circulars until I left themon the floor and then stood on them! Oops! I want to make both of the little tops you have made - they are gorgeous. Another great little pattern for small children is the kina - I have made both a baby and an adult version - nice and easy to knit.

Jo said...

Hi Kimberley
Thanks for popping over to my blog. I winced when I read that you stood on your circular needles. How frustrating! Anything under a 4mm seems quite fragile I thought.
Thanks for the recommendation on the Kina, I just did a google search for it - it's really pretty and looks like it might be just right for my skill level (the baby one anyway)!. It'll definitely be going on my list!
Jo :)

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