Rough start for Ishbel

I started Ishbel last night. I started Ishbel last night. I started Ishbel last night. I started Ishbel last night. I started Ishbel last night. Yes, I started Ishbel five times.

The first three times, I used my beloved Lantern Moon ebony circulars, 4mm/US6 as specified in the pattern. The problem was that the needles are nice and slick, and that wasn’t a good combination for me with the slick 100% silk. I decided to try my Lantern Moon rosewood needles, because they have a little more texture to them. But I only had them in US 5. After working the beginning again, I realized the 5’s were too small.

I went to my needle stash looking for bamboo, and I had a size 6 circular. Just one. Where are the rest? Whatever. I really wanted to start, so I did, even though the needle is 40 inches long. Looks ridiculous, and is a bit cumbersome!


Feeling a bit desperate, I called my friend Liz to see if she had a shorter circular. Yes! A Takumi Clover 16 inch circular. I transferred over, and after a couple rows I realized that the needle was grabbier than the long HiyaHiya, and I didn’t like it. Transferred back to the HiyaHiya and worked a couple more rows, just out of sheer stubbornness. But I think I really need to go buy a shorter needle tomorrow. I like this needle for this project. It’s slick enough, but not too slick. And the join between the cable and the needle is exemplary.


I guess no one needle is perfect for everything. It’s good to have options.

also rans

16 responses to “Rough start for Ishbel

  1. If it’s any consolation, I started mine about 5 times too, trying to get the right size needle! At least I didn’t have to worry about the slippery factor, as I was using the cotton yarn-bamboo needle pair.

  2. Sorry you had such a hard time starting this. I’m sure the finished project will be well worth it. I was lucky enough to meet Ysolda this weekend and she’s a delight and loves when people knit her patterns differently than she does. I got her book and hope to, one day, make the Ishbel also.

  3. That is going to be one gorgeous Ishbel. I’m impressed you were able to change out 4 times before going to the LYS to buy some new ones. Sounds like my needle stash.

  4. peacefulknitter

    Hopefully it will be smooth sailing from here on out!

  5. I’ve been in the same boat many times… And I can never find a size 6, ever…. I’m beginning to think they don’t exist, but you’ve just proved that they do. They must be rare.

  6. The yarn is so pretty, I can see why you’d want to get just the right needles for the project! I hope it goes better with the new shorter needles!

  7. Gorgeous yarn – that is going to be a beautiful shawl! I know just what you went through on the needles…and that’s why I bought a circular set. And somehow I still never can find the right size.

  8. I so agree, the right needle for the right job, it took a little while to realize this, and so I’ve been slowly expanding my collection of needles. It will be fun to see. The way you chose to begin your blog was just so clever, I got quite a chuckle out of it. By the that shawl is going to be gorgeous.

  9. I’ve done that, that’s why I have so many needles but not always just the right one.

  10. First the tangling and hand winding of the yarn, and now a few false starts. Whew, you are off to a rough start! It looks beautiful so far, you’ve inspired me to test the lace waters.

  11. I love the Asciano needles for silk. Great points, perfect join, and a bit grabby.

  12. How frustrating to have to start so many times. It’ll come out perfectly now that you have figured out which needle type and size works best. And there’s no such thing as having too many needles. 🙂

  13. I have some metal HiyaHiyas, but none of their wooden ones. I like the metal because they are grippier than my Addi Turbos but so nice and lightweight. I’ll have to pick up a set of their wooden needles and give them a try.

  14. Ha! To start with I just thought you were bragging about starting your Ishbel, not that you started it 5 times! I’ve never tried HiyaHiyas, I’m definitely a KnitPicks girl. Those are the options that I love!

  15. I really want to knit Ishbel too but I hope that it isn’t too difficult if you had to restart it so much.

  16. Sounds like a fun cast on!!! I just picked up her book tonight at our LYS that carries it! Such pretty patterns 🙂