Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Needle Beetle Madness

 I can hardly call these Needle Beetle videos reviews at this point - I think the device is awesome and am now quite biased!  I don't have a financial arrangement with Kris Basta, but she has given me some Beetles to demonstrate with videos, and I certainly had fun doing that.

I put up two more Needle Beetle videos today because my husband John pointed out that they would make GREAT Christmas presents, and maybe if I got the videos up, people would buy them for gifts.  So, if you want to give a machine knitter with a plastic bed machine (Brother 350, Brother Convertible, Studio LK-150), they will be absolutely wowed.  You can purchase them at  You will need to know the model number the person has so you can choose the correct model.  Sorry, these are NOT for metal bed machines.  They're for the most popular plastic bed ones.

I'm not the only one doing Needle Beetle videos.  Kris has some good ones on YouTube and other people, do too.  

Here are my two latest videos:

This first video is using the Brother convertible 395 as a standard gauge machine.  My friend Angelika has one of these, and she brought it over to my house, then we played with it all morning using the Needle Beetle and getting a decent Fair Isle routine.  Here's the amazing thing - as a standard gauge machine, you can get 16 stitch pattern repeats!  Wow - look at the fancy star I was able to knit after I finally got the hang of it.

If you use it as a bulky machine by swapping out the striker combs, then you get 8-stitch repeats, as usual.

Next video:

Now this is the 8-stitch repeats on the Brother 350.  I have one of those - it's very similar to the LK-150 except that it is a 7 mm machine, rather an odd duck size, but quite good for many weights of yarn.  It has 132 needles.  I was able to do Fair Isle quite quickly using the trick where you pull the needles (using the Beetle) but then you set the carriage to knit B-position needles only going to the left and knit held needles only going back.  Sometimes this isn't so good - the floats are on top of the held needles - but it was fantastic with this machine and I'm glad I did it that way.  Try it on YOUR machine, since it will save you time.  I also showed how to deal with the end needles to avoid messy edges.

Here's an older video, my first one with the Needle Beetle, and using the LK-150.  I was doing tuck and slip patterns, because they're quite easy with the Beetle and look great:

And here's the last one, also using the LK-150 and another great Kris Krafter goodie, the Weave-R.  It's a little weaving arm for the LK, and I had a great time with it.

Do you need some 8-stitch pattern charts?  I have them in my FREE Facebook knitting-only group, "Knitting with Diana Sullivan," which you can join here.  Look in the files after you join.  It's a big .pdf file.  There isn't a lot of content over there, but you can join at pretty much the beginning of the group and watch it develop.  

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