Would someone give me the "You sure, crazy woman?" look next time I buy birch needles? They make me feel like I'm knitting away with twigs. With the bark still on them.
Given enough budget and a sense of adventure, most knitters will find the needles they prefer. Some swear by Addi Turbo Circulars while others like Clover Bamboo Circulars. There's Lantern Moon and good old 14 inch metal straights your grandma taught you to knit with. The great thing is, we can agree to disagree, and knit with our favorites. There's no shortage of inventive needle materials like glass, flexible plastic, or even hand forged metal. Then just choose your length and how sharp you want the points to be.
Me? I'm for cold and slippery metal. Even if I have to deviate from my preferred double points (6 inches long, please) to magic loop, which I find inefficient (all that cord pulling). But after a few hours of extremely disgruntled knitting on my Brittany Birch #5 7.5 inch double points, it finally dawned on me that I really don't like knitting with birch needles. Change the tools, even with a less preferred knitting method, and I'm much happier1. No more clingy icky sticks.
Here's a Christmas stocking (oversized sock from Knitting on the Road) after the needle swap. Whew. So. Much. Better. Take the time and investment to try out different needles. These birch needles will go in the mail to a friend who might like them, or one of her assorted pets can use it as a chew toy2.
1 I don't have metal #5's in my needle stash, yet. I forgot to get them when I popped into the other LYS for #4 and #6 6" needles to replace some lost needles. After a half year of searching, I'm willing to say the others have disappeared.
2 Yes. That is sarcasm.