It’s no secret that I don’t see as well as I used to. Between eye
infections and all-purpose aging, I need help. For most things glasses
work just fine, but there are a couple of minor annoyances even with
glasses. One is the teeny labels etched onto most circ needles –
especially the ones smaller than US #4s.

if I were one of the Super Organized, I’d have a system for storing my
circular needles. Perhaps one of the sorting hanger thingies (see
below), or a binder notebook full of pockets. But I have a lot of circs
and little patience for filing things away, so I make do. Most of mine
live in a hand-me-down wood box that once held a bottle of gift wine.
The lucky few among them get replaced in their original packaging. Not
all of my needles are lucky. The less fortunate among them live in an
incestuous tangle, stuffed into that same wooden box. Figuring out
which needle is which is always a challenge that involves finding the
size gauge that’s supposed to live in that same box, and playing "size
me" until the right one turns up. Either that or calling over one of my
offspring whose eyes function better than mine and having them do the
squint work for me.

I’m not this organized.

Enter my latest acquisition, hot off the gadget rack at my LYS.

It’s another clever invention from Nancy’s Knit Knacks
– the Circular Needle ID tag set. (No affiliation). Tags are packaged
in two sets – one for US#0-4, and one for larger needles.
(Engraved labels on larger needles are easier to see, so I didn’t buy
the larger set.)?

I can find and read these tags in my needle jumble with no trouble at
all. Needle ID bliss! Of course one still has to remember to put the
tag back on the needle after the project is over, and manage not to
lose the thing in between – but that shouldn’t be too hard. I’ve
stapled the little plastic zip bag of tags in the circ box and will stow
the tags there between uses.

I also note that Nancy’s has been busy, issuing a new needle sizing
gauge that goes down to 000 (always welcome, although I wish it went
down to 00000), and an electronic version of the old katchaa-katchaa
style counter. I don’t use the things but I know that many people
do swear by them. It looks like the electronic one can subtract,
which is nice if you need to rip back. I’m surprised though that
it seems to have only one memory register. It would be even more
useful if it could remember two things at once (like total rows, and
rows in the current repeat).

High tech

Low tech

affiliation here between Nancy’s and me. I am however impressed that
they manage to identify and market to so many niche needs, including
the whole Knit Kard info system, the yardage gauge, and the WPI
tool. There are lots of companies selling knitting notions, but
most seem to be content with the old standards. Nancy’s is one of
the few that seems to be actively seeking out innovation.

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