I’ve recently knit a few super bulky projects which means that I’ve been using the oldest pair of bamboo needles that I own. I love these needles. They’re full of memories and tiny teeth marks. Before I got these, I always used cheap metal needles, but it’s hard to find inexpensive metal needles in larger sizes. My options were budget-friendly plastic, which I knew I hated working with, or the expensive but pretty bamboo, so I spent what seemed like a lot of money at the time and treated myself to a pair of bamboo needles.
At the time, Bean was just a puppy, and she had a certain fondness for yarn. She used to pick up my balls of yarn and run around with them like they were toys. On one occasion she pulled my knitting off the seat of a chair and ran around with it the way hyper little corgis do. She unwound the whole ball of yarn attached to my project in a tangled mess wrapped around the legs of the chair. Another time she managed to get my project down from a side table, and I was horrified to discover that she had chewed on the tips of my expensive new bamboo needles. At 18, I didn’t have the money to run out and buy a new pair of needles without doing a bit of saving first, but I desperately wanted to finish my knitting project. I took my needles out to the garage, dug out a sanding block, and buffed my needles smooth. I was worried about changing the circumference of my needles, so I just smoothed out the little bite marks enough that my yarn wouldn’t catch on the chewed bits.
The whole needle-chewing incident left me in love with wooden needles. Not only did I find them more comfortable to work with, but they were repairable! I never did replace these needles, and their imperfections are part of what makes me love them.