Knitting Needles & Types - All You Need to Know
Have you just developed an interest in knitting? Are those big knitting needles confusing you? Are you unable to decide which of the knitting needles would be most suitable for your project?
Don't worry! We have you covered. We will discuss all the various types of needles, their application, and much more here. We understand that a beginner might be overwhelmed with all the knitting tools. After all, there are so many materials, styles, and sizes. How do you determine which one to use?
Knitting needles influence the fate of your project. It is the size and diameter of these that decide the knitting gauge. So you need to be a bit careful while getting your tools together.
Without further ado, let's dig into knitting sticks and find out what would be the best needles for your project!
What are knitting needles yarns?
Not every knitting needle is suited for the various types of yarns. If the needle is too sharp, it can incur damage to the lacy yarn. Similarly, a small needle wouldn't work with the bulky yarn. You will need big knitting needles for that.
Knitting needles are manufactured, keeping the various yarns in mind. Each has its own specific features that make them suited to particular projects.
If you want the best needles for your project, you need to find out more about what each type has to offer.
What are the types of Knitting Needles?
Let’s take a look at common options you have;
Straight knitting needles
Single pointed knitting needles are the ones that people usually picture when they think of needles for knitting. They are usually available in a set of two, wherein each needle has a point at one end and a stopper at the other. If you are a beginner, straight knitting needles can be an excellent way to start.
Size and Materials
These single pointed knitting needles are usually available within the range of 9 and 14 inches. However, big knitting needles of this variety can be found too. They are usually constructed with plastic, bamboo, aluminum, wood, or steel.
These needles are ideal for smaller projects, including sweaters and scarves.
- Easy to work with
- Don't slide off the fingers
- Suitable for beginners
- Not too versatile
- Can be a bit too limiting
Square knitting needles
A lot of knitters have issues like hand pain, grip problems, or arthritis. They are unable to work with the regular knitting needles, as it triggers pain and discomfort. So should they give up on their most beloved hobby? No! Square knitting needles are the perfect option for them!
The square edges of the needles ensure that the needles don't roll away on a surface. This makes these needles a convenient choice. You wouldn't have to worry about the needles rolling against each other either.
These are usually ergonomically designed. So typically, you can have square knitting needles in any material that you are comfortable with.
- Easy to use
- Don't roll away on a surface or against each other
- Comfortable to work with
- Can be a bit limiting in terms of application
Circular knitting needles
Pro knitters will agree that these needles are one of the most versatile options. These needles are connected by a flexible cord, making them look like big knitting sticks.
It is up to you to decide whether you want fixed circular knitting needles where the ends and cord are joined permanently, or are more comfortable with interchangeable ones.
If they seem a bit too advanced, you can always start with easy sock knitting pattern circular needles and work your way up.
Size and Materials
Circular knitting needles are mostly available within the range of 16 to 48 inches. You will find great variations in cord thickness as well.
Wood, plastic, steel, bamboo, and aluminum are usually used for making the needle part of these round knitting needles.
The cord part can be made from nylon or coated steel. Some of these needles are too advanced with a memory feature, making them a bit challenging to work with.
These needles can be used for projects like sweaters, cowls, hats, and even socks. You can also use them for flat projects like shawls or blankets.
- Highly versatile as can be used to knit both round and flat
- Easier to store and transport
- Can hold projects with more stitches compared to other types
- Easier to use in a crowded place
- Less likely to break
- A bit too complex for beginners
Interchangeable knitting needles
Do you want the flexibility of circular needles in more sizes and with a lot more versatility? Interchangeable knitting needles will be the best for you. These have a firm tip with a flexible cord.
However, the pieces can be separated to change the cord lengths and needle sizes according to your project requirement. They can even be used as straight needles if the need arises.
The best interchangeable knitting needles indeed prove to be a sound investment since you get all the pieces in one case. They make for excellent knitting tools for serious knitters.
Double-pointed knitting needles
Double pointed needles work immensely well for smaller projects. These are short straight needles with points at both ends.
You will typically find double-pointed knitting needles in a set of four to six needles. Some of them have a flexible portion in the middle, which gives you more scope to work around.
They are mostly available within the range of 5 to 8 inches. Double pointed knitting needles are great for small projects like small socks and hats.
It isn't easy to work with these. You will need a bit of practice. But trust me, it will prove to be worth the effort!
Cable knitting needles
Cable knitting needles are a bit oddly shaped. They work to hold stitches as you form knitted cables. These simply make your knitting safer.
They are mostly a few inches long. Metal, wood, bamboo, and glass are used to make these. This is what you can call a unique knitting tool. Only buy it if you think you will be knitting for the long haul.
Which is the best among them all?
This depends on your project and the level of knitter you are. For instance, if you are a beginner, straight needles will work best for you. But for advanced knitters, straight ones will be too limiting, in which case the circular knitting needles will be the ideal option.
The most suitable idea for pro knitters is to go for the best interchangeable knitting needles that will offer maximum versatility.
Tips for choosing the best Knitting Needles
So, how do you determine that you buy the best knitting needles available on the market? Here are a few tips that can help you out.
Most yarn labels recommend the needle size that should be used on them. If you cannot decide which needle size would work for the yarn weight you are using, don't fret about it and take a look at the label.
- Don't overcomplicate it
I can understand that you are in a hurry to get to the next level but don't burden yourself with expectations. Don't shy away from using bigger size needles if you are a beginner. These are easier to handle. You will eventually be able to move forward. Give it some time.
Don't be hasty. Before you buy any knitting needles, make sure that you have enough information about them. How else would you know the options you have? Take time to gather more information before buying your knitting tools.
The internet indeed makes life easy. Take a look at the reviews various brands have attained and buy the needles from the brand recommended by pro knitters.
Knitting items can be costly. But think of it as an investment. It wouldn't do much good to buy low-quality needles. It will spoil the stitches, and all your hard work will be futile. Therefore, make a good investment in the best knitting needles that will last for long.
Famous Brands of good knitting needles
Want to know which brands offer the best quality needles for knitting? Here are some of the most appealing and renowned options on the market;
- Knitter's Pride
You can find these brands and more at Fillory Yarn!
How to choose a good knitting needle for your projects
Here's how you should select needles for your knitting.
- Decide the type of yarn you will use and look at the label to know the suitable needle.
- Go got basic knitting when you are a beginner and settle for the suggested needle size
- If you are working with lace, use needles with sharp tips
- Use a needle with smooth joints for the stitches to glide with minimal snagging.
Knitting is great fun if you have the right tools for it. Just keep one thing in mind. Knitting is supposed to be therapeutic and not stressful. So don't push yourself too hard. Take one step at a time, and you will love it more than anything else. Don't let those big knitting needles scare you!