Needles & Hooks

Knitting needles and Crochet hooks: “Which size should I use for my yarn?”

Well, this depends on many factors:

  • Do you want a loose, lacy, transparent fabric or a dense one?
  • Do you want to alter a size a little without having to do too much counting?
  • Perhaps most importantly: what does your pattern say?

Generally speaking, thicker needles and hooks are used for thicker yarns and thinner ones for finer yarns, but there is actually no “right size”. Both mohair and lace yarns are generally worked on larger needles to create open and lacy effects.

The following tables are therefore indicative of what you may expect as a starting point, suggesting needle or hook sizes for a series of yarn weights and indicating the resulting tension or gauge you are likely to make. At the same time we give the equivalent sizes of needles and hooks in metric, UK and US nomenclature and the equivalent US and UK yarn names.

In summary:

thick yarn:thick hook/needle = fewer, larger stitches= open fabric

thick yarn: thinner hook/needle = more stitches, closer together = denser fabric

thin yarn: thin hook/needle = more, smaller sts = denser fabric

thin yarn: thicker hook/needle = fewer stitches, further apart = lacier, looser fabric

Overleaf please see two tables of main yarn names with appropriate knitting needles or crochet hooks and indicative gauges/tensions for your work.

Knitting needles

Please note the colour shading crosses the typical yarns, which do not necessarily fit precisely into the boxes given!

Gauges assume a 10 cm (4 inch) square worked in stocking stitch/stockinette

Knitting Needle Sizes

Crochet Hooks

Please note the colour shading crosses the typical yarns, which do not necessarily fit precisely into the boxes given!

Gauges assume a 10 cm (4 inch) square worked in single crochet; smallest hooks are steel, larger are aluminium.

These indicative gauges are taken from the US Craft Yarn council website. Remember UK single crochet = US double crochet!

Crochet Hook Sizes

 

Click here to download a PDF of this document

 

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