I finished my lett lopi sweater. After trying it on, I can’t wait to work with lopi again. It really is much lighter than any other wool sweater I have, and feels so good on my body. I live in Arizona, so my need for wool sweaters is small. However, I have a whole family of siblings and nieces and nephews in the Midwest who I can knit for.
I started looking for a source of lopi as I haven’t seen it at my local stores. I found lopi at several internet stores, such as Webs. The price ranges from $5-$5.50 per 50g ball, + tax and shipping. Just for comparison, I looked at the Nordic Store in Iceland. Their lopi is $3.10 per ball with no tax. The shipping costs are substantial. For 10 skeins of yarn, the shipping cost is $29. However, since there is no sales tax, I actually still come out cheaper buying the 10 balls of yarn from Iceland and paying the steep shipping cost. I was really surprised by this savings. As long as I’m not in a hurry, I will order my Lopi directly from Iceland unless I can find a really great sale at one of the U.S. online stores.
As I delve further into the world of lace knitting, I keep coming across Purl 2 together through the back loop. When I started with lace, I was always just purling on the wrong side row. Now I’m working on more challenging patterns that work increases and decreases on both sides of the lace.
Purl 2 together through the back loop will create a right leaning decrease on the side of the work facing you while you work it. I’m usually working this decrease on the non-public side, or wrong side of the work. If you turn the work around to the public side, this decrease will be left leaning and look like an SSK, or slip, slip, knit on the right side.
Here’s how to work the decrease.
You take your right hand needle around the back side of the next 2 stitches on the left hand needle. You insert the right hand needle into the 2nd stitch from the needle first. You have to twist the needle and your work around a bit to get your needle inserted correctly. Then just purl 2 together as usual. If this method doesn’t make sense, you can work a purl 2 together after changing the stitch mount of your stitches on the left hand needle. That means you take the stitches off the left hand needle, then replace them so they are twisted. When the stitches are twisted, the back side yarn will lie forward, or closer to the needle tip than the front side yarn. You can also twist your stitches by slipping them one at a time as if to knit, then replacing them back on the left side needle without reorienting them. Then just purl 2 together through the front loops like normal.
I recently used a gift certificate to purchase the ChiaGoo Twist Red Lace Small interchangeable set. According to the owner of my LYS, this set is the best interchangeable set on the market. I have only tried a couple of other interchangeable sets, but this one is also my favorite. The key is the T-pin. Using this pin “locks” the tips in place and I have never had a detachment. I have used Addi Click interchangeable needles, but have had a couple of untimely detachments working on lace. I ended up buying a fixed circular needle to continue with my lace after having to rip back to a lifeline for the 3rd time when the interchangeable tip came off.
This ChiaGoo small set comes with tip sizes 2-8. The set has a nice carrying case, which is in fact the same case as for the full set (needle sizes 2-15). Therefore, if you later decide to add additional tips to your set, they can all stay in the same case. These tips are slightly more tapered then the Addi Lace tips and I find them even easier to knit with.
The set comes with the T-pin as mentioned. This pin is necessary to tighten and loosen the tip from the cord. You simply insert the T-pin through the hole in the cord, and then tighten or loosen as needed. If doesn’t feel like anything is happening at this point, but the magic is indeed happening. The tips remain in place until you place the T-pin and loosen the tips for removal.
The set comes with 3 red cords. These cords are sturdy but flexible, and are perhaps what the ChiaGoo brand is best known for. The cords are 14 inches, 22 inches and 32 inches. Remember, they will function as 24 inch, 32 inch and 42 inch cords when you factor in both 5 inch tips. I find the 5 inch tips easier to work with then the 4 inch tips that come in some other sets. The set also comes with 2 pieces you can attach to the cords to secure your knitting if you want to use the same tips for a different project. There is also a small connector piece that you can use to attach 2 cords and make a longer cord. The hole in the cord for the T-pin can be used to place a lifeline through if desired. The additional goodies in this set include a gauge and stitch markers.
Overall, I love this set and would highly recommend it if you are in the market for an interchangeable set.