Friday, October 05, 2007

The Shawl So Far

It's far from perfect, especially since Bali insists on helping by pouncing on the moving needles, but it's a lot better than Ugly Garish Object, and that was only a few days ago. I'm getting more comfortable working with the yarn, although I can certainly see why other people find it problematic. So I'm feeling heartened: progress is being made.

Special thanks to Berni and Equaelegit, who left reassuring comments about Lion brand yarn on my last post, and to Inez for the knitting links.

Okay, knitting gurus, here's a question for you: Next weekend, I'm flying down to Vegas as a delegate to our diocesan convention, where we'll be electing a new bishop. I'd like to bring the knitting with me. The TSA website says that knitting needles are allowed in carry-on baggage -- the only kind I'll have, since I'm not going to check a suitcase for a mere three-day trip -- but that there's still "a possibility" that the needles might be perceived as weapons by TSA inspectors, who'll then seize them. The site recommends carrying a crochet hook with yarn to save work, and a self-addressed stamped envelope so you can mail your needles back to yourself instead of losing them.

A friend at church told me a horror story about a grandmother with circular needles having her knitting seized as a possible terrorist weapon. Does anyone know how common this kind of thing is? Has anyone flown with knitting? Do you have any tips to minimize the chances that the good TSA officers will decide that I'm a dangerous person likely to try to poke crazed holes in crew, other passengers or the plane itself with my knitting needles?


  1. Amazingly enough, the online radio show service I interviewed you with has a show entirely dedicated to knitting.

    Knitgrrl Show

  2. I think it's an urban legend at this point. The TSA allows knitting needles. That's clearly stated in their list of things you can and can't take on board. But to be safest, use circulars. They're also less likely to puncture you, your stuff, or your neighbors in flight. And they require much less space side-to-side to use on the plane.

  3. Susan, I like your choice of colors. From what I can see it looks like you have the gauge thing conquered. Congratulations! But I liked the Ugly Garish Object. The colors reminded me of your much loved hospital scrub top.


  4. I've always packed mine in checked luggage, so I don't have personal experience.

    The Yarn Harlot, Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, says that only once has she been asked to put away her knitting on a plane. She knits socks when she travels and uses double-pointed needles. One flight attendant feared that a needle would go flying and injure someone.

  5. Eaquae Legit8:57 PM

    I've taken needles on a plane before. I've found that as they get bigger, blunter, and more plasticy, the more happy the security people are with them. I've never tried to bring my tiny metal needles on board. I was even allowed to bring little snippy scissors once, because they had blunt "points." I'll always kind of regret forgetting to stow my good pointy ones, though - those are gone for good.

    Another possible strategy is to have whoever is dropping you off accompany you right up to security and let them take home the Dangerous Terrorist Scissors/Needles.

    Love the shawl, by the way. It looks like a nice piece, from the pictures, so don't worry too much about flaws.

  6. EL: Thanks for the ideas! I think I'm going to transfer this project to circular needles, as per Maggie's idea; for makeshift scissors, I'm planning to bring a pill cutter, to which I hope the TSA won't object!

    I'll be taking myself to the airport (my husband isn't going, and doesn't drive), so unfortunately I won't be able to use your tip of having someone go with me! There's also the problem that they could sail through in Reno and then be challenged on the way home through Vegas: not much I can do if that happens. I'll just have to hope for the best!

  7. I've brought my knitting on the plane without a problem, although the advice for saving your work is good. I bring wood needles, not metal, I'm not sure if it makes a difference. I love the yarn, BTW.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.