I've only made one lace item, a scarf for a friend for Christmas. If I were making a shawl I'd want to be able to add cable, as the shawl grew larger. Slippery yarn and needles didn't bother me, I want the yarn to glide easily, even when doing k2tog, or p2tog. Sharp points for those stitches, and others, is a necessity. Otherwise it's a stuggle.