View Full Version : Should I skip DPN's all together?

07-04-2008, 06:12 PM
I've only been knitting a couple months, but I think I'm doing pretty good. I'm anxious to start working on some socks and am wondering if I should start right off with the magic loop method. I just ordered the set of harmony interchangeables off knitpicks and was going to order some harmony DPN's, but wonder if instead I should order some size 0-3 40" fixed circulars instead. That'd save me a good $35.

I guess what I'm trying to ask is whether it's absolutely essential to learn to knit with DPN's or if the magic loop (if I can master it) can take care of all my tubuar (is that a word?) knitting needs. If so I'll also look into buying the 40 and 47" cables for my interchangeables.


07-04-2008, 06:18 PM
Most sock patterns I have found are written for using DPNs but I have successfully managed to skip them and just used stitch markers to mark where i would have a different needle. As long as you can keep that straight, there is no need for DPNs if you don't want to use them. I have an insane supply of DPNs and use them so rarely I always have to remember where I was the last time I did need them so I can hunt them down. Seriously, I use them more for stitch holders than anything else. :thumbsup:

07-04-2008, 06:51 PM
So you knit all your tubular knitting with the magic loop, no problems? Once you got the technique down, how does it compare in difficulty to knitting with DPN's?

Also, what is the best size cable for a magic loop? Thanks!

07-04-2008, 07:17 PM
You could certainly use Magic Loop for everything, I would think. But I think it would be a great idea to try DPNs. It's a bit unnerving at first, with all those pointy sticks hanging off~lol~ but once you get the hang of it, it's very empowering! It makes you feel like you can tackle anything :cool: I actually find it very relaxing, but then I am very new to ML and so that may just be my personal experience.

Lots of people do like DPNs, though. I wouldn't discount them altogether!

07-04-2008, 07:20 PM
lol well no, I use 2 circs. I generally find it easier for me because it is more portable. DPNs are easy enough, but I just find using circs more convenient for me. :)

07-04-2008, 07:24 PM
Okay. :)

Nevermind.. I misread, LOL

07-04-2008, 07:48 PM
I started out doing socks on dpns and that is how i used to knit all of my socks. Once I got my Options I tried magic loop and found that I like it much better. BUT I still knit with my DPNs. DPNs are great for knitting fingers and thumbs on gloves and mittens.

Also I teach online classes (http://knittinghelp.com/forum/showthread.php?t=80586) and have DPNs class and a Magic Loop class. All of my classes are live. So if I screw up or just can't read the pattern that day you get to see it LOL.

07-04-2008, 07:55 PM
I think you should try several methods and see what you like best. I CAN do all my sock knitting on magic loop (CAN being the operative word) but to be honest, I'd do a whole lot less sock knitting!

DPNs are my FAAAAVORITE :) Except right now I'm working on a hat and I have to use NINE dpns to fit all the stitches on, because I don't have a size 2 circ. lol But don't rule out dpns just yet!!!

07-04-2008, 11:12 PM
It's not essential, it's personal choice.
I only like Magic Loop or circular to get a good ladder free base going, then I switch to DPNs, I find them much faster.

With socks I don't even need to get the base started. I only need that for hats and knitted on sleeves.

I like socks on DPNs because you don't need stitch markers.

07-04-2008, 11:17 PM
Personally I think DPNs are more trouble than they're worth, but it wouldn't hurt to try them.

07-04-2008, 11:35 PM
... but it wouldn't hurt to try them.

agreed. Good to try it all and see what you like best.

Besides, it's kind of neat when you KIP and people watch you knit an item with all those needles.

07-04-2008, 11:50 PM
I'd definitely give them a try. I was soo intimidated by them for so long and once I finally decided to go ahead and make a pair of socks, I just LOVE using them.

Even if not right away, you should try them at some point just to see how you like them.

07-05-2008, 12:03 AM
Thanks everyone for your views and replies. I think I'm going to start out learning the magic loop. I found a special beginner sock pattern (http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/beginner-socks-magic-loop-variation) that teaches you how to work the magic loop with the pattern. From there I'll see what I think. It may be a disaster, but we'll see.

07-05-2008, 09:56 AM
In all my exerience...hahaha On the two socks I have made. One was with dpn's and one was with ML. To tell the truth I think I like the dpns better seemed like it was more organized for me when learning to make a sock. >^,,^<

07-05-2008, 10:13 AM
I love dpns. That being said, I've only knit 1 sock on magic loop. It's frogged now, but not because of a problem with magic loop. The pattern just didn't work. I do like the magic loop, except for the first 5 or 6 rows. I think I'll probably do both, depending on how I feel...sometimes on dpn, sometimes magic loop.

07-06-2008, 08:21 AM
I've been knitting for less than a year and had never tried using DPNs or magic loop. Recently I went to a 2 hour demo class at my LYS. I was shown DPNs and magic loop and liked both. To be honest though, I think when I tackle my first sock I will do it on DPNs because I think I will understand basic sock construction better with DPNs. But as everyone has said, it is an individual choice since people learn in different ways.

07-07-2008, 01:47 PM
Learn D.P.Ns they are fun. you'll use it for something sometime for sure.

Lisa R.
07-07-2008, 06:14 PM
My personal opinion is that DPN's are sort of a tool of the trade for knitters, and therefore, it's probably a good idea to learn how to use them.

However, I really don't care for them too much, and do my socks on 2 circs. But I did do a few small projects on dpns just so I know how.

Still...it's all a matter of personal preference and what works best for you. Some folks swear by dpns, some by circulars, and now more and more love Magic Loop---so I say, go with what works and what you enjoy.

07-07-2008, 07:51 PM
I've knit socks on dpn's and 2 circulars (I find magic loop too taxing) and I can honestly say that dpn's are way faster. Just make sure you get needles that are not too slippery and go with longer dpns to prevent yourself from dropping stitches between needles. Having used dpn's and seeing how fast I can knit on them, I doubted I'd ever go back to 2 circs. Having said that, I recently came across, "2-at-a-Time Socks: Revealed Inside . . . The Secret of Knitting Two at Once on One Circular Needle Works for any Sock Pattern" by Melissa Morgan-Oakes ( http://www.amazon.com/2-at-Time-Socks-Revealed-Knitting/dp/1580176917/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1215474436&sr=1-1 )
and I am . . . intrigued.
Anyone tried this?

07-07-2008, 10:06 PM
I agree with most others that you should at least try them out to see if you like them.

After all, socks are NOT the only thing that would use DPNs.
I just finished a baby sweater that was worked in one piece. The sleeves called for DPNs! Had I never used them before, the sweater would probably have been ruined (or at least not finished before the baby's 1st birthday!).... ;)

07-07-2008, 10:27 PM
I agree with the others that you should try both methods. I have never been able to get the hang of DPN's, so I use magic loop for everything, and I still haven't made any socks! Both skills are very useful. God luck!