I was buying a fixed circular needle from Signature Needle Arts at Rhinebeck a few years back. The nice lady showed me the needles that were set out for trying before you buy. I stared at them. I had only been using fixed circs and my Hiya Hiya interchangeables and I didn’t remember what length needle tip they were. I stared at them all shiny and bright on the table. They had three different lengths. Did it really matter? I knew I wanted the stiletto points, I love sharp weapons, er, needles. I thought longer would be better so I bought the longest ones.
Fast forward a couple of years. I had bought the short Addi Lace set and loved it so I had decided to buy the long lace next. I used both sets without really thinking much about it. I jump between projects* so much I don’t think I’ve ever worked on the same project more than two nights in a row.
Over time though I did begin to notice that the longer needles sort of annoyed me for a couple of reasons. One being that I felt like I had too many stitches on the needles and they would “jam” up there and two, the way I would hold the needle in my right hand made me realize it was hitting the side of my pinky.
It may have taken me a quite some time to realize my preferences but I’m glad I now know which tools I’m most comfortable working with. Being more comfortable not just helps me knit better, but it also motivates me to finish a project faster (sort of).
* All these projects were on different needles too. I know the point of interchangeables is to interchange them but I didn’t like to**, so at the time I had a regular Hiya Hiya set, a sharp Hiya Hiya set (with extra tips), fixed circs, a Clover set (which I later gave away) and both of the Addi Lace sets.
** Even though I use Ravelry extensively for tracking my projects I didn’t like moving needles around. I have started to lately though and I leave Post-Its noting where I moved the project. I had to go through three different project bags to track down my US 4s.