2 Circulars vs. DPNs…at heel time

April 8, 2016

Let me begin by saying I have a distinct bias: I started on dpns. I am comfortable on dpns. I like the way my dpns make socks. However, I’m open to change to change and am trying one sock toe-up on two circular needles at this time. Later, I will revisit this post or create a similar one, once I get to two socks at a time on one circular needle. I have a specific pattern in mind for that sock. Alas, allow me to return to the socks I am currently working on.


Briannag, helping me model the pussy willow sock…

I’ve been working the Knot Socks top-down or cuff-down on four double pointed needles. This pattern is also cabled. I am on the second sock and getting excited to finish. I knit the heel turn after an exam today and so the sock is taking on a periscope shape, which is one of my favorite parts of knitting with dpns.


The heel-cup(short rows on the purple sock…coming to one of my favorite parts…

I have also been knitting the Pussy Willow socks toe-up on two-circular needles in that pretty gray yarn. I love and hate the circular needles. The extra circular needle is always dangling below. You get used to it, but it can be annoying. The good thing with circular needles is that I haven’t lost any stitches in traveling. I have managed to drop a couple stitches when switching between needles during tricky knitting sections, but nothing major-not even the swearing.


Both socks together…easy drop on the left and picking up to do…lots of cables on the right; there may be no perfect method-but that’s why we love socks, right?

I did not have to tighten the first stitches as much with the cables, but there is a minor amount of confusion about which needle leads to which. I tried to keep the needle I wasn’t working on centered, but that couldn’t happen as I was knitting the heel flap and turning the heel. In fact, turning the heel was actually more cumbersome on the two cable needles as I found myself trying to work two needles together that weren’t meant to cooperate. I ended up slipping the stitches onto the working needle and marking my spot. It wasn’t a tough fix, but the heel is somewhat more difficult on the circulars.


The beginning of the periscope on the purple sock.

This being said as I’m about to pick up my heel stitches and knit across on my dpns. I’m just beginning working into the foot on the purple socks. I’m beginning on the leg on the gray toe up socks. In addition, the toe-up sock pattern is a simpler knit to knit as there is only one spot in which I am working the pattern. The purple cuff-down sock is cabled and more complex with much flicking back and forth on the needles. I’m not sure this pattern could be easily worked on the circular needles.


Current progress on the Pussy Willow sock…It is nice to try it on as I go along…Wondering if its a little big, but sometimes, a girl likes big, slouchy socks. And, Briannag is cuter with her eyes open…usually.
I almost have to work two similar patterns to get a true feel for it. Perhaps when I get to the single circular with cables, but I suspect my purple cabled socks will be done by then…or at least they should be. I’m not ready to track more than two sock patterns at a time. Picking up the heel is going to enough for tonight, provided I do not decide I’m too tired to knit. (I wish there wasn’t such a concept. So, fellow knitters, which style is your preference?


3 Responses to “2 Circulars vs. DPNs…at heel time”

  1. I have completely switched over to the 2 circular needles after years of doublepoints. I do rely on some doublepoint action while picking up the gussets on the top down socks but other than that I am 100% circular needles. I just love, live ChiaoGoo needles!

    The circular advantage for me: no dropped stitches from the ends of needles (more portable in a small project bag), I can try the sock (or mitt) on while working on it, and it is easy to work different patterns on the front and back of the sock (think CoopKnits socks) or the top and bottom of a mitt. The two circulars have kind of changed my knitting life. 🙂

    • Thank you. I like the concept of two different patterns on top and bottom. I also like to be “fearless” in knitting, so I may have to try it all. I think my goal is going to be simply knit it as the pattern says. I can likely adjust it for working on a preferred method, but there’s likely a reason the creator picked the method they did;-)

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