Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Knitting Tool Profile: Tapestry Needles

This is the seventh post in a year-long series1. I'll post a new one on the last Tuesday of every month, with facts, photos, and further resources about twelve knitting tools

Really, all you need to become a good knitter are wool, needles, hands, and slightly below-average intelligence. Of course superior intelligence, such as yours and mine, is an advantage.

-Elizabeth Zimmermann, Knitting Without Tears

©Knit Picks
©Kate Heck (Kate's Cauldron)
SevenYaks Etsy Shop

What is it?
A tapestry needle is a blunt needle with a large eye used for sewing up seams in knitting or creating duplicate stitch.

Fun Facts
Maggie Rhigetti has a number of great pointers about tapesty needles:
  • "Plastic yarn needles have a surface finish that tends to 'hang up' in the yarn and slow one down as well as stretch the stitches."
  • "Oversized needles to more damage than good. The needle should be small enough to slip into a stitch without stretching it or splitting the yarn."
  • "Needles with a shop pointed tip, such as darning or crewel needles, are a definite no-no. They are made to split yarn, and will do so." 
Elizabeth Zimmermann has some, too!:
  • "Tapestry needles are all right for fine wool, but they cause knitting worsted and teh heavier wools to bulk up behind the eye, and to have to be dragged through the fabric. So hunt up some larger ones." 

Further Reading
Knitting in Plain English, Maggie Righetti

Knit Picks Bent Tip Tapestry Needles
Kate's Cauldron

Seven Yaks

1Read the others here.

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