Posted in Q&A's on Tuesday the 2nd May 2017 by Vicki Ormerod
Can you tell us a little bit about you and your blog?
Hi I'm Corrine from What Corrine Did Next! I've been blogging for the last two and a half years. The easiest way for me to describe it is a mash up of Sewing Bee meets Bake Off (but then making and eating all those cakes, being able to make and adjust clothes is pretty helpful!) I started my website to encourage people to have a go at something new - you'll notice almost all of my recipes and makes are relatively simple (generally beginner or intermediate level)...this is deliberately for this purpose!
When did you start sewing and what inspired you to start?
I started sewing in 2013. My friend and cousin were on the same dressmaking course and I wanted to get in on the action. They found they got very little from their course as they spent most of the session waiting for the tutor to come round, so we formed our own little sewing bee with my mum helping us when we got stuck. Mum gave me her machine when I properly started sewing. She bought it with the money my Gran left to her so it's a special machine for us both and I've christened it Annie after her (don't worry, I treated mum to a new Singer, she's still sewing lots of bags!)
What was your first project?
My first project was a disaster - I decided to make a blue shell top from craft cotton with an exposed red zip...my poor mum (who is a fabulous seamstress) was trying to teach me and had her head in her hands on lots of occasions, thinking I'd never pick it up. I gave up briefly then was seduced by an advent calendar panel to quilt, got the bug (and a bit of skill) and I've not looked back!
What do you love most about sewing?
The thrill of making something beautiful from scratch still makes me really happy...having someone ask where I bought it from makes me even happier! Seriously though, being able to make whatever pops into my head rather than trawling round endless shops and feeling frustrated I can't find what I wanted has been the biggest draw - I love designing my perfect wardrobe.
Do your friends or family craft along with you?
Yes, my mum, cousin and friend Lynsey are all keen sewists (my friend Lynsey makes the most beautiful childrenswear as Yellow Bug Designs - her Instagram feed is just the cutest and I'd kill to be as neat as her!)
Who do you make things for?
A mix - I love sewing my own wardrobe but nothing makes me happier than sewing for other people - handmade gifts are so much fun to make and give! Last Christmas I tried to make as many gifts as possible.
Do you have a favourite snack when crafting?
Cake - my Rocky Road Bites are the perfect accompaniment :)
What 3 sewing items/tools could you not live without?
A Good Pair of Scissors (I love my Fiskars), Clover Quilting Clips (they're much easier than pins when you're securing jersey) and my little Embroidery Snips for when it all goes horribly wrong (I prefer them so much more than a seam ripper)
What are your favourite fabrics to sew with any why?
For me it's got to be Jersey Fabric. If I look at my RTW wardrobe I used to buy so many jersey items and I love me-made jersey items just as much. When I began sewing one of the first things I made for myself was a royal blue Ruby Dress in ponte roma - I've certainly not shied away from knit fabrics!
How many projects do you have on the go at one time?
It can vary greatly - I like to cut out projects in batches so I'd say 4-5 on average but I like to know I always have something ready to start (as well as it being a huge timesaver).
Whats your favourite thing you have ever made?
It's got to be my advent calendar - it's not my most technical project by a long shot but it holds lots of great memories of learning to sew.
Do you watch TV or listen to music while you craft?
At the moment I'm renovating a spare bedroom into my sewing studio so I've currently taken over the dining table with my back to the TV. You'll most likely find me listening to music while I sew, with Foo Fighters, Paramore, Evanescence and You Me At Six featuring heavily on my playlist.
What/who do you go to for inspiration before you start crafting?
I love Instagram - I'm not alone in saying this, so many of us would agree, the sewing community are a great support and source of inspiration. I could waste hours looking at what everyone else is making! It's perfect for seeking out a new pattern to make!
Do you have a crafty tip you would like to share?
Think about your garment insides, making then as neat as the outside give a more professional finish. It will make you feel like you're winning at sewing - I used Hong Kong seams in my Morris Blazer and I love them every time I put my jacket on.
Do you have any advice for new bloggers?
Enjoy what you're doing and be yourself - there's nothing more engaging as a reader than getting to know who you're reading about so make it personal!
Could you sum yourself up as a sewist in 3 words?
Haha, it's probably easier for me to answer that as someone around me when I sew...probably a "little bit sweary" (well it doesn't always work does it?!)
What are your crafting ambitions?
I'd love to move into delivering workshops and share my love of sewing with other people.
What would you say to anyone looking to start sewing?
Have a go, start simple and enjoy what you're doing, it's a great hobby to get into!
What is your favourite product on the Minerva Crafts website and what would you make with it?
A classic, but I love the range of Ponte Roma Fabric - from Morris Blazers to Cocos to pencil skirts, it's so versatile (and really warm in winter, you feel like you're wearing pyjamas!) it's a staple for me and Minerva Crafts have such a geat selection to choose from!
Posted in Guest Posts on Saturday the 29th April 2017 by Vicki Ormerod
Hey Gals and Guys,
I’m Kten. If we haven’t already met… Hiiii nice to meet ya :o)! I normally blog over at Jinx & Gunner, my e-home-away-from-home but this month I’ve come to pay Minerva’s e-crib a little visit because they were nice enough to send me some project materials (Thank you Minerva!!) and I wanted to do a little share-sies with you fine folks. Hope you like it:
I hate to so publicly pat-myself-on-the-back buuuut isn’t she a beaut?? This is the Nascha mini skirt by Named Patterns. To best highlight the strong diagonal design line and triangular slit across the front, as well as the exposed zip in the back, I knew I wanted a striped fabric to work with. So Minerva sent me 2yds of this gorgeous hand printed Batik Fabric and I couldn’t be happier with how it turned out (pat pat ;o) ). However, if I’m being completely honest, after all the effort I put into pattern placement on the front and back, I wasn’t quite able to pattern match the sides. Oh well … sometimes something’s gotta give, right?
On the topic of fabric pattern, lets take a quick minute to discuss this batik deliciousness shall we? It’s listed as a medium-weight cotton on Minerva’s site, but truth be told, when it arrived it was a little bit lighter than I expected. I think this is probably due to the tension of the weave as opposed to the thickness of the fiber. It’s not loose by any means but also doesn’t have that stiff/crispness that comes with a tight weave and ultimately what I was expecting from ‘medium weight cotton’. Does that make sense? Either way the fabric was definitely still solid enough for this application, but for future reference it may be better suited for a top or loose fitting summer dress. Just my opinion, but by all means go get some and then let’s discuss, lol.
The fabric itself has a slightly wrinkled texture to it that I think comes from the wax treatment used in the batik-ing process. In a way it’s almost similar to seersucker… but better, I mean look at those thick juicy stripes! Also these are hand painted stripes folks, so every once in a while you’ll see where they don’t quite match up, and even more rarely where the wax must have accidentally dripped during the creation process. I loooove these parts…insert all the heart eyes. For me it really plays up having a one-of-a-kind piece. Those subtleties plus the ability to manipulate the stripes with such a modern structured pattern made me like a kid in a candy shop!
Minerva sent me 2 yards to play with and even though I was cutting all my pieces on the bias to accentuate the design lines, I had more than enough to make a size 34. In addition to this I was also sent white cotton lining and a metal zip. I pre-washed the two fabrics together and my white lining definitely came out looking ever so slightly blue, so color coordinate if you wash this fabric people. For me, however, at the end of the day, these two fabrics will always be washed together now that I have bound them together for life, so it’s all good in my book. Now, I just have a perfectly matched lining ;o)! I requested a metal zip since it would be exposed and I just think they make a project look so profesh (I know, here we go again, pat pat).
If you’ve read about this pattern before on other blogs, then you probably already know that it is an amazing puzzle of a pattern that comes together very cleverly. Not an unfinished seam in sight. Truth-be-told there isn’t even a finished seam in sight because everything is enclosed within the lining. The last step of the entire skirt has you hand sew the lining to the exposed zip and the front slit, but that’s it for hand sewing, so it’s a pretty quick make as well.
As I mentioned earlier this is a straight size 34. When I was muslin-ing the pattern I made a size 32, and while the waist was pretty good, because the whole skirt pegs slightly and I not only have hips, but also thighs that ‘don’t lie’ I felt a little limited in my mobility…like… could-only-take-dainty-steps limited, lol. This one is waaaaay more comfortable, but also sits a little lower on my hips because the waist is a tad too big. Next time I might grade between the two sizes but I’ll see how this one ‘performs’ over a couple washes before deciding. You never know if a little shrinking is in the cards with a natural fiber and I’m already pretty happy with the fit, so we shall see.
Anyways, I think I’ve probably already written more than you all signed up to read so I’ll just leave you with one more pic showing my pattern matching skillz (pat pat pat) ;o)
Happy sewing peeps. It was a pleasure to meet ya!
Posted in Product Reviews on Thursday the 27th April 2017 by Vicki Ormerod
The Clover Pom Pom Maker looks a little complicated but it so easy once you get started.
I'm not well known for being good at fiddly projects so I approached this with a bit of trepidation. I thought I would start with the bigger one (45mm) to get my head around it. I followed the instructions. The instructions on the back are not enough on their own but there's much more in depth pictures and tips on the inside of the card.
My first attempt left a lot to be desired, I don't think I wrapped it tight enough and my snipping mustn't have been very neat. So it wasn't looking great.
In the interest of product reviewing, I persevered and tried the extra small one (20mm)... And it worked! It looked really neat and cute. Once I had a few (because who wants one pom pom?) I asked my husband to time me and I could make a pom pom in 3 minutes. For someone who isn't very good at fiddly, it works really easily and I imagine it's the easiest way to get pom poms that small.
I chose a fine pink yarn with bits of glitter in it and it looks really pretty. I'm not sure a thicker wool would work for the smaller ones but it does on the larger two.
A few tips for the smaller ones: use embroidery scissors with sharp tips for really good precision and it suggests to tie a knot which you wrap the yarn three times so you can tighten but I found that it was too bulky to fit between the gaps so I just double knotted it and it seemed to work out great. Finally, your project will need a really good shake when you're finished, preferably over a surface you can sweep up, to get rid of any little bits that have loosened up.
Overall, it's quite a relaxing process and easy to do in front on the TV to get a nice little pile.
I used mine to make a cushion for my niece's birthday. I wanted it like a trim so I took some stashed multicoloured twined ribbon and stitched the pom poms in place along it. I used three fingers in between each to space them out, but you could measure it like a dedicated Crafter!!
This is really easy too; the needle goes through easily and you can't see the stitch. It only takes a couple for stitches to hold them comfortably in place. I hacked an old pillowcase and drew lines in my air erasable marker across the cushion. I then sewed the ribbon in place. My hand embroidery isn't great so it looks a little informal but I still love it!
I then made new buttonholes and used random pink buttons to make it even more fun! Perfect for a little girl!
My niece loved it, it's a real personal touch for her room. I think the fact that I made something for her with the pom poms speaks volumes because it has to be pretty sturdy to last five minutes around an excitable six year old. My memories of pom pom making as a child are that of wonky, unsecured little bobbles so I'm really pleased that they feel so robust, even though they are small and they look so professional.
I'm definitely going to do something similar again and use them to trim the hem of a skirt or a scarf. I think they are really cheerful and cute! I want to do a bit of research about what to use the bigger ones for too. I've also seen lots of people do them in different colours, I think that would be fabulous too!
Posted in Product Reviews on Wednesday the 26th April 2017 by Vicki Ormerod
We have just started stocking these lovely Sewing Patterns from a brand called Machine Stars here at Minerva HQ. They are aimed at teaching children to sew and are supposed to be super easy, in the hope of encouraging more children to take up the hobby and be creative. There are 8 different patterns to choose from and we sent Emma from Sandpiper Sewing a cope of the Apron to have a go! Here is what she had to say....
I tested this pattern with my 7yrs old helper who thought it was awesome.
The pattern comes in really great child friendly packaging, with a clear drawing of the finished product. I think this pattern would make a really lovely gift for a child who’s just starting to sew.
On the back of the pattern packet it listed everything you need to start, note - it does mention later in within the instructions that you might prefer to use ribbon for the neck and back straps, it would be good if they could add a note about this.
So we are all set with our supplies as per the packet.
Next we took out the pattern, which comes on lovely brown paper rather than tissue paper, which I really liked for children as tissue paper can tear and that would have been frustrating for a 7 year old. There’s just one size so much less confusing than finding your size and having to check which line you are cutting. I do think the apron comes up big, that was the first thing I noticed when I put the pattern out on my table, but I guess it’s a bonus that you could turn up the length and then just let down when your child grows taller.
To save time pinning the pattern to the fabric we just drew around the edge of the pattern with a Water Erasable Pen, (a pen that will vanish when you apply water to the marks). You could use an air erasable pen or you could use dressmakers chalk whatever you have to hand.
Next the instructions say to turn the edges under by 1cm, and pin. We used Wonder Clips for this as not only do they hold the folded fabric better, you are able to sew closer to them which helps avoid the fabric coming unfolded, and there’s no sharp pins for a child to worry about catching themselves on. I use wonder clips lots myself when sewing I’d definitely recommend them, great for bias binding.
Next you can either make straps from tubes of the fabric or use ribbon or cotton tape. Because our Fabric was quite a heavy weight canvas I thought tubes from this fabric would result in very bulky straps which wouldn’t tie very well and also would not be soft around the neck when wearing the apron, so we used soft Cotton Tape, which although means an additional purchase I think it's cheaper than using your fabric. The pattern instructions also suggest ribbon for the ties.
When attaching the neck strap we decided to add some Velcro for safety which I’ve seen on lots of aprons we have purchased, this also gives a little room to adjust the size too.
Here’s the finished apron, this is on a ladies size 10/12 dummy so as you can see it does come up fairly big. We are both very pleased with the finished apron!
Posted in Product Reviews on Tuesday the 25th April 2017 by Vicki Ormerod
I recently had an opportunity to use the Clover Pom-Pom Maker from Minerva. I had the pack of small and pack of extra small which between the two packs gives you 4 sizes (45, 35, 25 & 20 mm)! They're both cute and colorful little gadgets, and so easy to work with to make your own Pom-Pom's. Why on earth would I want to make my own Pom-Pom's? Surely I can buy any kind of trim I want, right? As we all know many times the exact shade of the color accessory (in this instance the Pom-Pom) of pre-made trims may not be an precise match, and though you search high and low in the end you're better to match to yarn or maybe even embroidery floss than to pre-made. As a sewist, maker and fiber artist, I am more inclined to want to create my own pom-pom's versus buy pre-made. And given how easy these tools are to use, I can even include my little grand-niece in the fun! The possibilities are endless - garment construction trim, home decor trim, tiny toys.... I find these tools to be useful, easy enough to use that even a child can work with them, as a maker the possibilities of use are limitless - open your creative mind and use them in as many different ways as you can imagine!! And have fun!!! Here are a few samples: A key chain (made with low gauge yarn)
A home deco trim similar to a tassel for a hutch door key (made with embroidery floss)
A little animal (sheep or lamb) for a farm scene that Madeline my 5 year old grandniece and I are working through (after she decides which animals will be on our mini farm!)
And one of the many projects that I have underway in my studio is a crochet caplet that I am working on the finishing of currently (made with high bulk variegated yarn). Here are some photos of the step by step process to make 1 pompom;
Thanks so much for reading and I hope I have inspired to have a go at making your own pom poms. If you have any more ideas on how to use them in your crafts please leave a comment below!
Posted in Product Reviews on Monday the 24th April 2017 by Vicki Ormerod
It's Spring Time! I look like Cheshire cat with a huge smile on my face. The sun is shining and that makes me happy but more so I have new pairs of knitting needles, and I cannot share them with you.
Prym have designed new ergonomic straight knitting needles. Now, I'm not usually a fan of straight needles due to the hand ache I got, passing my old knitting needles to my Nan whose hands are much more tolerant than mine. So when I was asked to test the Prym straight knitting needles I did think "what's so special about them?" Well, I can tell you now. They are fantastic!
I decided to knit a cardigan for my youngest daughter, who is 4 months old, and a summer clutch bag for myself. For the cardigan I used the 3.5mm (US size 4) and the bag I used 10mm (US size 15), both in length 30cm.
My first impressions were that they reminded me of something out of Star Trek, I mean they are very modern space age looking. A real delight for the eyes. Made from plastic, these knitting needles look and feel durable. The packaging states that they are ergonomic so I could only hope that they are going to be kind to the hands, especially if you are like and have double joints.
I’ll run through the great features in more depth so you can get a good sense of how these knitting needles are really ergonomic.
Straight Not Rigid
Usually knitting a swatch with straight 30cm needles is not a joy. After about 5 rows my hands and fingers begin to ache, but with these Prym needles there was no pain. Seriously I'm not just saying it. I am the skeptic of all skeptics. The whole swatch was knitted quite quickly. The flexible plastic material meant that I was in control, the needles did as I wanted. The needles are not actually tubular, but triangular. This reminds me of school writing practice, using tripods and triangular stem pencils. I think that's the concept here; for the needles to fit comfortably in between the fingers. The slight flat sides give extra grip and again control.
Softly Pointed Tips
Then there is the tip. Normally the thinner the needle the sharper the tip. Here Prym have a slightly rounded tip, which at first would seem that they would never pick up the yarn from one needle to the other. I was pleasantly surprised how easily they did. Often I end up with dimples all over my finger tips from the sharp ends of other knitting needles.
At first I thought it was going to be difficult to pick up a yarn like cotton. But I had no problem at all. Knitting the baby cardigan was easy and fast and my fingertips remain happy too.
The needles have a clever little groove on the top for for the tip of the other needle to fit in. I think this is a fab idea. Not only does it mean your needles can stay together when not in use but when a project is already on the needles, you do not need to worry about the stitches falling off by clipping the needles together. Clever of what!
These needles are very lightweight. Sometimes with larger size needles I have found them to have a little weight on them which can tire the hands. The Prym needles are lightweight which meant that my clutch bag was super easy and quick to knit up.
So what’s my verdict. The biggest thumbs up. I decided to test the largest and the smallest sized needles just to see if there would be a difference in the ergonomics. There was none, and that is what kept me going with the projects. I will definitely be using these for more projects in the future, so keep an eye out.
Thanks for reading,
Teena @ Teenyweenies
Posted in Guest Posts on Saturday the 22nd April 2017 by Vicki Ormerod
It's Alex here again and I am super excited to be writing my second guest post for the Minerva Crafts Blog!
In a few weeks, I will be travelling to the streets of Paris in 1899. This fictional trip to Montmatre is to attend the latest Secret Cinema event, a recreation of Baz Luhrman's Moulin Rouge! Having attended other Secret Cinema events in the past, I know that dressing up is all part of the fun. The only thing that could make it even more fun is sewing your own outfit. As with other events, I received an email with my character and costume details. I will be a journalist, and I need to wear a white shirt with red bow tie and top hat and a long red skirt. This is pretty tame compared to the other costumes I have seen! As I already had a white shirt, I decided that I would make the skirt, and what could be better for a fictional trip to Paris than a Sewing Pattern by Deer and Doe, who are actually based in Paris?
I chose to make the Fumeterre Skirt Pattern. This is a high-waisted maxi skirt, with a choice of button front or a fly front zipper. I decided to go for Version B which has the fly front zipper. My fabric choice was a lovely lightweight linen blend in a vibrant red. I chose this particular Dressmaking Fabric because I was keen to wear the skirt again during the Summer, and this has a really summery feel which stops it feeling like a fancy dress item. I decided to cut the pattern a size up from my usual size based on my waist measurements, and I'm really glad I did because the fit is pretty snug. The sheer volume of fabric required for this skirt is quite overwhelming, and tracing off the pattern pieces and cutting out the fabric took a good couple of hours. The skirt is made up of triangular panels, with pockets added to two of the front panels. Piecing them all together was straightforward, but I had to lay al the pieces out so I didn't get confused and attach them together in the wrong order!
Making the fly front zipper was a new technique for me, and I found the instructions confusing at first. I had to edgestitch the fly front from the wrong side of the fabric, rather than topstitching on the right side as I couldn't get it to lie flat. I used co-ordinating thread, so the finish was similar. If I decided to make this again with contrasting topstitching, I would baste in place first from the wrong side to avoid this problem. I really like this effect, and am pleased with how it turned out once I finally understood what I needed to do.
Attaching the waistband was straightforward. The pattern suggests inserting elastic into the back of the waistband, but I decided to skip this as it was a good fit already. The bottom of the skirt is finished with a facing rather than a turned-up hem. This is the first time I have finished a hem like this. In order to shorten the length, I knew I would need to cut off the excess, leaving the seam allowance in place. I was nervous about cutting it too short, so I asked my Mum (a very experienced seamstress!) to pin it up for me, so I would know that the length was right. It was 4.5cm too long, so I ironed it wrong sides together at 3cm so I had a clear cutting line to allow for the seam allowance.
My only slight niggle with the skirt is that the waistband wasn't sitting quite straight at the button fastening. At my Mum's suggestion, I added a popper to hold it together at the top, and this solved the problem.
I'm really pleased with the final skirt - it works well for my Moulin Rouge costume, but the fabric choice makes it really wearable and I can definitely see me wearing this in the Summer. If I was to make it again, I would choose a light denim chambray and I would take the time to use contrasting topstitching which would give a really professional finish.
Now I'm definitely ready for my trip to the Moulin Rouge - Au Revoir!
Thanks for reading,
Alex from Alex's Adventures in Fabric
Posted in Product Reviews on Friday the 21st April 2017 by Vicki Ormerod
Pom-poms, fluff balls of wool scraps perfect for trimming gifts, jazzing up a beach hat with some colour or even adding to your shoes! My earliest memories of pom-pom making involved my mum showing me how to use two circles of cardboard cut from a cereal box. They were a quick and fun activity, especially on a rainy afternoon. Fast forward to a few years ago and I picked up a pack of the Clover Pom-Pom makers purely for their appealing craft gadget nature. Now Clover have expanded their range to include more sizes, from tiny 20 and 25mm diameter ones to the large 65 and 85mm makers. This means you can literally make them and put them on everything!
For this review I was presented with the extra small pack (20 and 25mm) and the small pack (35 and 45mm) which I had previous experience of. It had been a while since I had last pom-pomed so I was intrigued to see how the sizes would compare when it came to ease and the all important fluffability factor.
Once you get the hang of it they are pretty straight forward to use. Basic instructions in multiple languages and with pictures can be found on the back of the packaging, with a more detail step-by-step guide inside. You basically open up the maker “arches” and wind wool around one set. I found that how many layers you wrapped depended upon the type of wool you were using, but the more you wrapped the fluffier the outcome. You then close the arch up and make a start on the second arch in the same way.
Once that was closed, you firmly hold the maker in one hand and snip up the middle of the wrapped wool on each side with some small snips or embroidery scissors. You definitely need something sharp and pointy, especially for the tiny pom-pom makers.
All that’s left is to tie a longer piece of wool around the centre of the pom-pom to hold it in place, release the pom-pom from the maker by pulling the two halves apart and then snip to preen and shape your new fluff ball!
Once in the swing of things these makers could be said to be better than the retro cardboard rings. They also provide that consistency of size which comes in handy when making multiple pom-poms for multiple products. They are made of sturdy plastic with a steel pin in the centre and only scratch slightly with some aggressive snipping on the tiny pom-poms which I must admit I found too fiddly to use. Perhaps leave the extra small-sizes for smaller hands and get the kids involved!
Pom-poms are definitely on trend at the moment, with them popping up in colourful clusters around straw beach hats, on the edges of spring scarves and as key rings on handbags. For a fun do it yourself project, stitch a couple to some shoe clips and have some funky interchangeable, fluffy shoes!
Posted in Product Reviews on Thursday the 20th April 2017 by Vicki Ormerod
Today we have the lovely Elaine from That Random Madam product testing the new Prym Ergonomic Knitting Needles for us that have recently arrived here at Minerva Crafts. This is what Elaine had to say...
I really am very very excited, I have just joined Minerva Crafts universe and become a product tester. They sent a shout out to makers to join them and I quickly applied and was delighted when they said yes!
My first mission is to test a product from Prym, a large German craft supplies company. Most of us will probably have used something of theirs in the past, my local stores stock their goods such as poppers and buttons and other notions. Now they have launched an innovative take on the Knitting Needle.
"How can you improve on the humble knitting needle?" I hear you ask, as did I but I was intrigued and that's why I requested to have a go with these. The Prym needles are hailed as 'ergonomic' and as an RSI sufferer, I am very mindful of seeking solutions which take into account the fact that we are flesh and blood and consider looking after our bits and pieces.
So what's so special about these needles and what makes them 'Ergonomic'? Well as soon as you see them you can tell that they are different. They appear relatively long compared to standard needles and the first thing you notice is that they have a bulbous knob on the end and they are not uniform thickness along the length.
Usually knitting needles have a screw on cap at the end, which in my experience means they come unscrewed. Now I'm a loser, I don't mean that I'm a loser - I just mean I'm good at losing things. Lids, caps and all manner of attachments generally fall off and roll away when on my watch. So this feature appeals to me. These needles appear to be moulded from one piece of material so there is no cap to fall off and get lost, in addition to this the needles clip together, this will help with storing and keeping pairs intact.
Another feature of these needles is their shape, rather than being cylindrical the main shaft is in fact a triangle, not unlike the shape of a Toblerone (...ahhh Toblerone... need to get me to an airport sometime soon so I can get large multi flavoured Toblerone...) Sorry, where was I? Oh yes shaped like a Toblerone. Am I the only one whose knitting needles frequently fall on the floor and roll away? I think this may help with that problem.
I was asked to try two different sizes of needle so I went for a 4mm and a 7mm. I tried the 7mm first with a chunky yarn that has been working its way towards a coatigan for a couple of winters now, the needles feel comfortable in the hand and that triangular shape does seem easier to keep hold of . The needles also seem to hold the wool better as well. My regular needles are smooth and I've had work simply slide off the needle dropping stitches everywhere. These Prym needles seem to have a slightly less slippery surface and this together with the toblerony, knobbly endedness makes it less easy for the work to slide off. I really enjoyed knitting with this, so much so that I've made a vow that these needles will see to it that my coatigan will be worn next winter without fail.
Then I tried the 4mm pair on another (yes another) piece of Work-in-Progress; this is a lighter cotton yarn. This pair have the same novel qualities of the clip together bulbs at the end, the triangular shaft and a slight knob at the point which allows the needle to slide into the loop of the yarn easily. Again I liked the feel of the needle in my hand, however this needle was sent to me in the longer length (the 40cm ones) and I did feel these were a little long for me and it's much more bendy than the thicker shorter needle.
The needles are pitched as ergonomic. Knitting was very comfortable with both sets of needles although I'll need to get used the flex in the thinner needles. Overall I really enjoyed using them, they are lighter, comfortable and they also hold your work well, which means that the overall knitting experience is nicer. I can definitely see myself adding these to my set of needles next time I need some.