As you can probably imagine, Barb and I have tried many, many knitting needles! We love to knit and we love the feel of having great tools in our hands. As local yarn shop (LYS) owners, we've had to ask ourselves: if you were stranded on a desert island and you could only take one set of knitting needles with you, what would you choose? Your LYS, of course, can't stock them all - we wouldn't be able to buy any yarn if we did! We have stocked other needles in the past and in the present and future we continue to personally test drive new needles as they come out on the market. However, to this date, if you were to come in to the store and ask either one of us the desert island question, we'd answer: Addis!
We like the German-made Addi line for it's versatility and variety of options. They manufacture all types of knitting needles and crochet hooks and within our favourite line of circulars they provide lace tips and regular tips as well as their lightweight metal needles and two wood options: bamboo or olive wood. When Barb and I knit, we like to use circular needles. It doesn't really matter if we're knitting "flat" or "in the round", the circular needle suits us well. The shorter (than straight) needle tip fits in the hand nicely and the cable connecting the needle tips keeps all your knitting safe and sound when travelling around in your project bag. We both use "fixed" circulars and "interchangeable" circulars.
The interchangeable circulars are very nice! You can fit an entire range of knitting needles (3.5mm - 15mm) in a small case and only carry a minimal number of cords to have practically every knitting needle you could want. When we travel, especially when we head out to a knitting retreat or conference, we carry along our Addi interchangeable sets and, "we're set!" We both love the "click" component as well. Slip the needle tip onto the cord, give a little push and a twist and the tip clicks into place.
Addi makes six (count 'em - SIX) interchangeable sets: Basic (10 sets of needle tips, 3 cords, nickel-plated); Lace (8 sets of 4" needle tips with lace tips, 5 cords, nickel-plated); Long Lace (8 sets of 5" needle tips with lace tips, 3 SOS cords, nickel-plated); Bamboo (8 sets of bamboo needle tips, 3 cords); Olive (8 sets of olive wood needle tips, 3 cords) and Mixed (8 sets of paired needle tips, 3 SOS cords). Each interchangeable set comes in a custom "wallet" and is covered by a lifetime guarantee. Have an issue? Bring your needle or part back to the retailer you purchased it from and a replacement part will be ordered for you. As retailers, Barb and I love the way Addi stands behind their product.
The interchangeable system components are also interchangeable. Tips and cords from each set work with tips and cords from other Addi sets. Can't decide which set to buy? Addi has a "starter" set which includes three different needle tips and two cords. You could build a set with many different tips by purchasing what you need, "as you go". In fact, sometimes the biggest decision is between "regular" tips and "lace" tips. So, Addi came out with the Mixed set, in which each pair of needle tips has one basic tip and one long lace tip. It comes in a bright sunshine yellow case! There are a lot of needles in one Addi interchangeable set and you can add more to your original purchase. How much are they? An interchangeable set is an investment - it's over $200. But remember, when you spend $200 or more in product at RCY, we'll treat you to a discount of 10% off.
Need a very small knitting needle? When I knit socks, I like to use two Addi turbo rockets (fixed) circular needles. I just love the join, the flexible cord and the slick nickel plating. Addi fixed circulars come as small as 1.5mm in diameter and you can get needle lengths from 30cm (12 in) all the way up to 150cm (60 in). Addi also has some "sock" needles in a 20cm (8 in) length, designed for knitting very small tubes (socks, mittens) in the round on one circular. Sweet!
And, of course, Addi also makes the lovely FlipStixs; the double pointed needles that are light and hollow and have a sharp lace tip on one end and a regular tip on the other, so you can flip them to get the needle tip you like best. Flip Stixs come in 6" and 8" lengths and are metal. Light and hollow, I love the way they feel in my hands.
We really do, love our Addis.