These stainless steel circular knitting needles from Knitter’s Pride are some of the best I have tried! See how they compare to other popular brands, and what I think of the quality and performance.
Knitter’s Pride just released a brand-new collection of stainless steel knitting needles and notions, and I got the chance to try some of them out! The new Mindful Collection is now available online, and the folks over at Laurel Hill sent me a few items from the collection to test and review. I really enjoyed knitting with these needles, so let’s get into the review.
Why Only Circular Knitting Needles?
The steel knitting needles in the Mindful Collection are all either circular or interchangeable circular needles. Why no straight needles? Because you don’t have to use straight needles when you’re knitting back and forth. Circular needles work just as well for knitting flat pieces as they do for knitting in the round.
I actually prefer to use circular knitting needles for all of my projects, even when I’m knitting back and forth. With straight needles, you have the length of the needle sticking out on both sides as you knit, which can get in the way. That extra needle length can also make your knitting feel heavier, because you are holding up the weight of the entire project on those needles.
On circular needles, there is a flexible cord or cable that holds most of the stitches, so much of the weight of your project can rest in your lap. You only have to hold the weight of the stitches that you are currently working with.
I tested a fixed circular lace-tip needle, and an interchangeable circular lace-tip needle.
Fixed Circulars VS Interchangeable Circulars
What’s the difference between fixed and interchangeable circulars? Well, a fixed circular needle has the flexible cable permanently attached to the needle tips. Fixed circulars come in different lengths for projects of different circumferences. This means that you might have a size 8 needle that is 36″ long, but for any project smaller than 36″ in circumference, you’ll also have to buy a size 8 needle in a shorter length.
Interchangeable circular knitting needles have tips that can be swapped out with cables of different lengths. The end of the needle tips are threaded, and the cables have a tiny screw at the end. So you can remove the needle tips from a 36″ cable, and and screw them onto a 24″ cable whenever you need a different length. You can even use a super-long cable for very large projects, like large blankets and afghans.
I think that interchangeable circulars are a better choice, because you don’t have to purchase multiple needle lengths in each size. They are also pretty handy, since you can pause working on a project, and remove the needle tips to work on another project. The cable tightening key helps make sure that the needles are fully screwed onto the cable, so they won’t come loose as you’re working.
With a good set of interchangeable circular knitting needles, you’ll have the tools you need for just about every knitting project. Use them for knitting back and forth, or for knitting larger projects in the round. If you’re making a small-circumference project like a small hat, sock, or sweater sleeve, you can use a long cable with the magic loop method instead of double pointed needles. Interchangeable needles really are the most versatile type of needles you can get.
Are Stainless Steel Knitting Needles Better?
One of the most important things I look at when I am testing a needle is the material the needles are made from. Different types of materials have different amounts of friction to their surface. This affects how smoothly and quickly the stitches can glide across the needle. The needle tips are all made in one piece, so there isn’t anything for the stitches to catch or snag on.
These stainless steel needles are nice and slick, allowing the stitches to glide smoothly. They are even a little slicker than the KnitPicks needles I use for everything, which are laminated birch. Stainless Steel is also very durable, so these needles will last a long time.
One thing that I don’t like to see on a knitting needle is poor size marking. Some needles have the sizes marked very faintly, others have the markings painted on. (Painted markings can rub off over time.) The Mindful Collection needles have the sizes printed very clearly on the needle shaft, but not with paint.
What are Lace-Tip Knitting Needles?
The needles in the Mindful Collection have lace tips, which are ideal for lace knitting. Lace knitting involves a lot of decrease stitches, which require inserting the needle into multiple stitches at once. Lace-tip needles are designed to taper more slowly at the tip. They begin to taper further up the needle, and end in a very thin needle tip.
Even if you don’t knit much lace, the lace tips on these needles make it so much easier to work into multiple stitches! If your stitches are tight, or if you’re working decreases or cables, having lace-tip needles will help.
The cables on these circular needles are made of nylon-coated steel. They are also memory-free, so they don’t kink or remain coiled. These cables have something I have not seen on a needle cable before. They are marked with their length, so you know how long they’ll be when the needle tips are attached. There are also markings at every inch for easy measuring.
My favorite part of these cables is that they swivel! When the needles are attached, they don’t come unscrewed as long as they are properly tightened. But where the cable joins to the connector, the cable is allowed to move freely. So when you turn the work, the cable does not get twisted. Instead, the needle turns on the swivel connection, so that the cable never twists. (They also offer cables that don’t swivel, but the swivel cables are pretty nifty!)
Overall, I think the Mindful Collection needles are a great choice for anyone looking to try circular knitting needles. They are durable, high-quality, and perform very well. They also have several features that you won’t find in most other knitting needles. I recommend getting them as a set of interchangeable circulars, but the collection also offers beautiful project bags and notions. You can shop the Knitter’s Pride Mindful Collection at Laurel Hill Online here.
What are your favorite circular knitting needles?
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