How to Knit with DPNS (and avoid common problems)

Knitting with double pointed needles (DPNS) seemed a bit like magic to me when I was first learning to knit. But once I gave it a try, I realized it’s pretty straight forward. One trick is to use knitting needles with a little more grip, such as using bamboo and avoiding metal needles. I’m partial to the U-nitt bamboo needles, which are also available in sets with multiple sizes from Amazon. I then sewed this case to hold them all. I like smaller needle sizes (up to size 7 needles) to be 6″ in length and larger needles (sizes 8 to 15) to be 8″ in length.

Case for DPNS

Once you learn to trust that the needles really aren’t going to fall out of your stitches, and figure out how to get your fingers around the needles, the next thing to worry about is laddering. Laddering is when the tension between your needles is uneven (often too lose), which creates a gap that looks like a ladder; see the following image. The video below demonstrates a couple different methods to avoid laddering.

Example of laddering

One other tool that’s helpful when knitting a project on DPNS is a case made to hold your project. When you put down your work between knitting sessions, you can gather the needles together and place them in a DPNS case; when snapped closed, the snaps prevent the stitches from moving around and sliding off the ends. You can see an example in the photos below. Another option is to gather up all the needles into a single bunch and put a rubber band around each end of the bundle.

Sock being knit on DPNS
Sock project safely stored in DPNS case

So how do you knit with DPNS? Check out the video below to learn more.

Want to Give it a Try?

The following projects are knit on DPNS:

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