Review: Knitpro Symfonie Interchangeable Knitting Needles

When I first decided to try knitting in the round I didn’t know whether I’d be any good at it or if I’d even like it, so I bought a pack of cheap, generic little circulars from Amazon just to try it out, and I used them for months.

I knew there were some issues with them, a couple of snags and suchlike, but the main one was that the cable is only around 20cm long. There was a lot of this:

Of course, having never known anything else I thought they were pretty darn good. But then I got a 20% off voucher from Hobbycraft so I had a browse, and there in the clearance section were some Knitpro interchangeable needles and cables. Far too tempting to resist, right?

First of all, can we talk about how beautiful they are? Just look at these colours!

I ordered needle sizes 4mm, 4.5mm, and 5mm because they’re the ones I tend to use most (aside from 6mm, but they didn’t have any of those) as well as a 35cm and a 94cm cable. All of which came in at less than a tenner, even before applying the 20% discount.

I was working on my Whimsy Cowl at the time, so when they arrived I immediately moved it across to the 35cm cable and did a couple of rounds just to try them out.

Oh my goodNESS, these are amazing!

I can’t believe how flat the join is once everything is locked together, there’s no catching or snagging at all. And oh the knitting itself!

These needles glide across each other so smoothly I feel like I was knitting with twigs for the previous 6 months. There was a real danger that I’d end up with a metre-long cowl because I just wanted to keep using these gorgeous needles.

Plus there’s no more concertina-ing and I can actually see what I’m making now.

And the cherry on the glittery icing on the cake is these stoppers, which screw on to the cable ends so I can take my knitting to work without worrying about everything slipping off the needles in my bag.

Genius!

This isn’t a very balanced review, but honestly I can’t think of a single thing I don’t like about these babies. Good to look at, easy to set up, awesome to use, and they didn’t even come close to breaking the bank. I am 100% sold. All that’s left to do now is try to find more sizes so I can have a full set!

Hannah

xXx

Blocking magic

You may remember from aaaages ago that I finished my Whimsy Cowl and it was in need of blocking.

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Lookit those wibbly wobbly edges, just dying to curl up into a yarny burrito.

Well I dithered for a long time, having never blocked 100% alpaca before and knowing how fragile it can be. I was also worried about blocking it doubled up, in case I couldn’t pin the two layers properly or the bottom layer didn’t get chance to dry and I ended up spoiling it.

But then I had a thought: my blocking mats lock together like jigsaw pieces, so I could make a 3D shape with them and they should hold it.

Turns out I was right!

I pinned out my cowl and sprayed it with water til it was properly wet, then left it for a few days to dry out.

And this is the final result:

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The top before and after
The bottom before and after

I love how the spaces have opened up, and how neat the edges are now. It’s just magic.

I’m almost looking forward to winter so I can wear it! Almost…

Hannah

xXx

WIP Wednesday 16.05.18

Current WIP count: 7

I think it’s time to accept that I will never completely clear my WIP list. As soon as I cast off my Whimsy Cowl I started on a crochet top, then after a lunchtime walk in the sunshine I decided I absolutely must make a sun hat. And of course I’ll need another knitting project to give my crocheting muscles a break…

It’s okay though, as long as I can keep my WIPs in single figures it doesn’t feel too overwhelming.

The Tunisian jumper is still rolling along. Just 3 more rounds and it’ll be time to join the sleeves on!

I did manage a wee bit of shaping at the back, but not a great deal so I don’t know how much of a difference it will make to the fit. I can’t be bothered frogging back to add more in so it’ll just have to do!

Here’s the beginning of my top:

The yarn is just a generic cake in shades of blue that I wanted to get used up and out of my stash, and the pattern is one from Ravelry that I can’t find right now. Of course I can’t just leave it alone and I’ve already made some adjustments, mainly making it longer and using hdc instead of dc for some of the bust section. I really don’t require a roomy bust (sadly).

My sunhat is also blue, just because I bought a lot of blue cotton in various shades last year and I need to start making a dent in it. I’m dithering between making it all in one colour, or with a stripe or two of turquoise.

This one is a Country Girl hat, which is turning out lovely and floppy at the moment. I love big, floppy sunhats 🙂

So that’s what I’m working on this week, in between basking in the sunshine while I can. How’s your week going? Working on something fun? Let me know in the comments!

Hannah

xXx

FO Friday 11.05.18

Ooh just sneaking in before midnight.

Here’s a picture of my finished Whimsy Cowl, although I do still need to block it:

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I am loving the two colours together, that was definitely the right choice to make. It might look a wee bit of a messy transition right now, but I’m hoping that blocking will make it show up properly. We shall see.

Any tips on blocking 100% alpaca? I’m very scared of spoiling it!

Hannah

xXx

WIP Wednesday 02.05.18

Current WIP count: 6

Isn’t crafting magic? This week I’ve supported a friend dealing with depression, found out that the last nice person at my work will be emigrating to Germany this year, and that one of my best friends will be moving down South permanently. Possibly this weekend.  And I’m not curled up in a ball under my duvet right now because each time I went straight to my knitting and crochet and found my place of calm.

Of course I still cried, but I was able to slow down and focus on the good times I’ve had with my friends rather than going over and over how much I wish they could stay/be well again.

Plus I’ll always have my blogging family, right!

 

So this is where I’m up to with my Whimsy Cowl after all the sad-knitting, able to sort of see what the pattern looks like

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I’m getting right into it now, and starting to recognise the structures that can tell me which round I’m on without having to constantly check my tally. I’ve also decided that just the one colour is too dull so I’m adding in the purple when the end of this ball starts approaching.

This has of course taken some of my attention away from the Tunisian jumper, so there’s not a great deal of progress to talk about on that one. I’ve done maybe three or four rounds since last time.

I’ve set myself a mini goal of doing at least 2 rounds per day just to keep it progressing, otherwise I’ll forever be distracted by more interesting projects and it’ll never be finished.

That’s what I’ve been doing this week. What’s everyone else been working on? Let me know in the comments!

Hannah

xXx

WIP Wednesday 25.04.18

Current WIP count: 7

I cast on something new at the weekend, even though I hadn’t finished any of my current WIPs, but I don’t feel the least bit guilty. Everything I’m working on at the moment is either too big to travel or involves several yarn balls at once, so they’re just not portable. I have an hour-long lunch break at work; I need something to occupy myself for the 40 minutes left after I’ve eaten!

So I’ve cast on a Whimsy Cowl because this pattern has been sitting in my Ravelry queue for months.

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Artsy Instagram photo

 

The yarn is from Knitting In France, in the colour Sirene. I also have a gorgeous skein of purple, which I may or may not add on as a contrast colour, it depends how long the cowl is once I’ve used all three skeins of Sirene.

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They’re all 100% alpaca and I am loving how soft and squishy the skeins feel, I’ve never used alpaca before so it’s pretty exciting for me.

Also, after a weekend of solid focus the Tunisian jumper is now just a bit longer than it was before I frogged it. Nothing but progress from here onward (hopefully)!

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One good thing about this restart is that now each colour section is made of 13 rounds. 13 is my favourite number and I always try to work it into my makes somehow, so I’m happy it worked out naturally that way.

That’s what I’m working on this week, in between running outside every time the sun shines. Got to get that Vitamin D while I can. How is everyone’s week going? What are you working on right now? Let me know in the comments!

Hannah

xXx