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Best knitting needles 2018 – [Buyer’s Guide]Last Updated April 1, 2019
Best knitting needles of 2018
I must say I am quite a fan of knitting needles, so when the question “What are the best knitting needles available on the market?” came to my mind, I excitedly started gathering information together with personal experience to write this article in the hope that it may help you find the suitable knitting needles. There is a wide range of products available on the market today, and below I have reviewed 3 of the very best options. Simply review and buy them. Not all knitting needles are created equal though.
Test Results and Ratings
|Ease of use||
№1 – Knitting Needles
Why did this knitting needles win the first place?
I don’t know anything about other models from this brand, but I am fully satisfied with this product. I really enjoy the design. It is compact, comfortable and reliable. And it looks amazing! I am very happy with the purchase. It is definitely worth its money. The product is top-notch! The material is stylish, but it smells for the first couple of days.
№2 – Knitting Needles
Why did this knitting needles come in second place?
Managers explained me all the details about the product range, price, and delivery. I like this product. For such a low price, I didn’t even hope it to be any better. It’s decently made. This is a pretty decent product that perfectly fitted the interior of our office. Seems that the material is good. It has a very beautiful color but I don’t really like the texture.
Why did this knitting needles take third place?
I liked the design. We’ve been using it for 2 months and it still looks like brand new. I hope that the good reputation of the manufacturer will guarantee a long-term work. It doesn’t squeaks nor bents. Looks great in my apartment. This price is appropriate since the product is very well built.
knitting needles Buyer’s Guide
Choosing the Cable Length
The cables for interchangeable knitting needles are usually available in various lengths, starting at around 40cm (16″) and increasing through to around 150cm (60″). Which length to choose depends on the project being knitted, however remember that the great thing about this type of knitting needle is that the length can be adjusted using different cables, or joining multiple cables together.
Most patterns will identify which length circular needles are suggested. Combining and switching cables with the required knitting needles can save a knitter from having to purchase new sized circular needles every time they start a new project.
Longer cables (greater than 90cm) are typically used for heavy or larger projects most common knitted in the round, such as sweaters and jackets or flat knitted projects including large shawls and blankets.
Medium length cables (60cm – 90cm) can be used for mid-size projects, also knitted flat or larger tube knitting projects, like shawls and bigger scarves.
Shorter cables (up to 50cm) would be used for smaller projects requiring tube knitting, including hats, children’s scarves and headbands.
Choosing the Needle Tip Size
Before we get to selecting the right size, it is important to note that the size of a needle refers to the diameter of the thickest part of the needle tip.
Much like the length of the cable, the size of the needle tips will depend on the project you are intending to knit, and more specifically on the weight of the yarn you will be knitting with (and even your style of knitting if you want to get technical). Most knitting patterns and yarn specifications will provide a guide as to the recommended size of needles to use.
To truely assess which size needle is appropriate for your project, it is best to knit a small 10cm test patch with the yarn you intend to use. From this patch you will be able to count the gauge (or tension) of your project. The gauge refers to the number of stitches or rows required to knit a 10cm section of garment. A knitter’s gauge is a combination of their style, the needles used and yarn selected. Once the yarn is selected, the needle size is the only true variable in a project. Thus a test patch can determine if the needle size (and thus gauge) is right for you to easily follow the measurements in your knitting pattern.
Given this natural variation between knitters, it can be useful to purchase a set of interchangeable knitting needles, so that you have a range of sizes on hand should you need to swap sizes.
For a useful guide on which size to choose with each weight of yarn, please refer to our Yarn Size Chart, remembering that the best way to select needle size is by knitting a test patch before commencing your project.
Interchangeable Knitting Needles are available in a range of materials, including Metal, Wood and Plastic. Each material is more appropriate for different knitters and generally, the preferred material is down to personal preference. This makes it hard to say that any material is “better” or “worse” than another, or more or less appropriate.
For this reason, we have created an entire (albeit brief) buying guide to help you select you Knitting Needle Material.
Circular Needles wrangle your stitches
A circular needle is like two double-pointed needles that are connected together by a long cable, which is usually made of plastic. Because you can fit lots of stitches onto that cable, a circular needle is ideal for knitting pieces with larger circumferences, like the toys in my upcoming book. The configuration of the stitches on a circular needle is simple: you knit from one end of the needle to the other in a continuous spiral.
Straight Needles shine with intarsia
Investing in a set of interchangeable knitting needles is a commitment to the next few years of your knitting pleasure. Our experience has shown us that most likely purchasers of interchangeable sets are late beginning-to-intermediate knitters looking to prepare themselves for a variety of projects and yarns. Our recommendations below are geared towards those knitters needing an all-around needle set, including some upgrades for knitters with more specific needs.
How to choose an interchangeable knitting needle set
Other factors include the tip profile, material and finish, price, warranty, and what you’ll be knitting. We’ve evaluated over a dozen different sets against these critera to come up with our picks for you. We’ll go into greater depth on selecting a needle based on material (metal, wood, bamboo, or resin) in a future guide. Most interchangeable sets connect by screwing the threaded end of the flexible cable into the base of the needle until tight. Where the needles meet the cables is called the “join”, and it’s important to inspect joins to make sure they are smooth, so that yarn will slide over easily without catching, and sturdy, as the join endures a lot of force throughout it’s knitting lifetime.
Don’t lose your work with a secure cable connector
We’re particularly fond of the Addi-style keyless spring-twist connector. Rather than screwing in (and gradually unscrewing through use) like most interchangeable sets, the Addi line connects with a push-and-twist method similar to a child safety cap on a medicine bottle, and stays securely connected until you again push and twist to release. The Addi interchangeable cables are a soft light blue that loosens quickly and doesn’t coil up while you’re working “Magic Loop” style on small projects, with a smooth join where the cable meets the metal connector. While not the most flexible cable we’ve tested, the Addi cables perform very admirably.
Don’t lose your keys
We also find the need for an additional key to tighten and loosen the screw-in connections to be a small inconvenience, as the keys can go missing at inopportune times, keeping your needles hostage until you replace the key. That said, most interchangeable sets require a key or grip to tighten or loosen the needles, and plenty of knitters improvise with paperclips and the like. due to the fine quality of the needles and cables; so if the connector sizes are no inconvenience to you, the set is very well-priced for its craftsmanship. You can’t go wrong with either set.
We mention the HiyaHiya Sharps in contrast to the ChiaoGoo Red Lace as a sharper stainless steel needle. In fact, the HiyaHiya’s are even sharper, so we’d only recommend them for very accurate knitters and those knitting lace or socks.
The ubiquitous Boye Interchangeable needles also got poor reviews from knitters due to the stiffer cable and rough joins, as well as quality issues. You may also notice we don’t recommend any bamboo needles in this guide. Bamboo needles aren’t wildly popular with knitters as our other picks, due to very dull tips and a sticky surface that really grabs the yarn. We’ve also had bad luck with bamboo needles breaking and splintering, and aren’t convinced that they’re sturdy enough to rely on.
The first issue to consider when buying yarn is its weight. Weight refers to the thickness of the yarn and there are six main categories, ranging from super fine to super bulky.
Superfine is also known as sock yarn, fingering yarn or baby yarn (some baby yarn is fine, which is slightly thicker than super fine). It is often used for lightweight items like socks, baby clothes and lace or decorative trim. Fine yarn (also known as sport yarn) is slightly heavier but used for many of the same applications as super fine.
For light garments (or heavy socks) lightweight yarn is a popular choice. Also known as DK (for double knitting) or light worsted weight, this yarn is perfect for light sweaters, tank tops and light throws.
Worsted weight (also known as medium) is probably the most used weight of yarn. The biggest variety of yarn can be found in this weight, and it’s great for heavier afghans, sweaters and accessories like shawls, ponchos, pillows and handbags. There are many different color and texture variations in worsted weight yarns, so you can get many different looks from the same weight of yarn.
The next-heaviest yarn is bulky (or chunky). As the name implies, this is a heavy yarn great for scarves and hats, sure to keep you warm on the coldest of days. It’s also used for making rugs and in other craft projects. And the heaviest yarn, super bulky (sometimes confusingly referred to as bulky weight) is wonderful for baby blankets, winter accessories and chunky sweaters.
The thicker the yarn, the fewer stitches per inch and the faster it is to knit up. If you want a quick project, make a scarf out of super bulky. If you want something slower paced and more challenging, make some booties out of super fine yarn.
Yarn is made up of all sorts of fibers today, from cotton and wool to acrylic and silk, mohair and exotic fibers like cashmere and pashmina. Depending on where you shop, you may only find cotton, wool and acrylic yarn.
Many knitters love wool and will use little else. It is an incredibly versatile fiber and can be spun in different ways that make it good for cool weather and warm weather alike. Most wool yarns these days are not as itchy as the sweaters you might remember from your younger days. Some yarns are sold under the name of the breed of sheep they came from. The most notable of these is merino wool, which comes from a long-haired sheep and makes a fine, warm, luxurious yarn.
Cotton is another incredibly versatile yarn, good for all sorts of projects from fisherman’s sweaters to accessories. Cotton is heavier than wool and does not hold its shape very well when stretched.
It is usually relatively inexpensive and is widely available in many different colors, weights and textures. Cotton is much more washable than wool, but it can shrink as well if washed in hot water.
Some die-hard knitters turn their nose up at acrylics, but these fibers have come a long way. There’s still nothing natural about them, but they more closely mimic some of the natural fibers these days. The upside of acrylic is that it tends to be inexpensive and is machine washable. It’s great for baby gifts because the new mother doesn’t have to worry about how to care for it.
Acrylic yarn comes in a dizzying array of colors, textures and weights. It can be a lot of fun to work with because acrylic can do things that natural fibers can’t do. Many of the novelty yarns are acrylic, and these yarns are a lot of fun to work with for a scarf, handbag or other fun accessory.
Cast all the stitches onto one double pointed needle. Try to cast on somewhat loosely, so that the stitches are able to slide freely on the needle.
Knitting with Double Pointed Needles
Having knit across all the stitches of the first needle, that needle becomes free to knit the stitches of the next needle. For example, the green needle knit all of the stitches of the yellow needle, freeing the yellow needle to now knit the stitches of the pink needle.
A scarf is a great project for beginners.
Since learning how to knit, I’ve made a lot of fabulous things, like scarves, hats, and sweaters. I’ve also taught others how to knit—from summer camp counselors to third graders. I have to say that I’m most proud of teaching a stubborn Navy Seal the art of knitting.
Once you get the hang of it, you will quickly become addicted. The click, click sound of knitting will become a constant in your life. When you first learn how to knit, a scarf is a great beginning project. It offers you easy practice, but also leaves you with a handmade scarf to add to your wardrobe.
Gather Your Supplies
I could tell you exactly which products to buy, but that won’t be best for you. I choose my knitting needles and yarn based on how they feel. You need to be comfortable with how they feel in your hands. Choose your products carefully and make sure you feel comfortable with them.
Yarn: You will want to use worsted weight yarn. When you first begin, you should choose one solid color (later on you can use multiple and variegated colors). Make sure you touch all of the different yarns you like before buying. If you don’t like the feel of the yarn, you won’t want to knit with it.
Crochet Hook: It is helpful to have a crochet hook for picking up dropped stitches (size H or close).
Scissors: You should keep a pair of scissors on hand to cut your yarn. You shouldn’t break your yarn by tearing it as this will cause unravelling or stretch it out.
Hand Cream: This might seem like an odd material, but it is necessary. Choose an absorbant cream, so it won’t end up on your yarn. Wooden needles and the yarn absorb oils from your hands. You need to find a way to keep your hands moisturized while keeping your yarn clean.
How to Knit
You have completed your first knit stitch! Repeat these four steps in each stitch remaining on your left needle. When all of the stitches are on your right needle, with none left on your left needle, one row has been completed.
Turn the right needle, hold it in your left hand, and use the free needle in your right hand. Work another row of stitches. Practice by knitting more rows of knit stitch.
How to Purl
The reverse/companion of the knit stitch is called the purl stitch. The difference between the knit and purl stitches is that with purl stitch, you insert your right needle point from right to left, in front of your left needle. You can cast on more stitches, or continue on with the rows you knitted from above.
Yea! You have completed your first purl stitch! Repeat these four steps in every stitch across the row to complete one row of purled stitches. Now, transfer the needle with the stitches from your right to left hand. Knit every stitch in the row. At the end of the row, transfer the needle with the stitches to your left hand, then purl every stitch in the next row. Knit another row, then purl another row.
Cast on 3stitches (or 1stitches if you want a skinnier scarf).
Row 1: Work 2xribbing across the row by knitting two stitches, then purling two stitches, then knitting two stitches, etc. You will begin this row by knitting two stitches, and end the row by knitting two stitches. Turn your work, so the stitches will once again be on your left side.
Row 2: Continue the ribbing by working the stitches as they appear. Begin this row by purling two stitches and end with purling two stitches.
Repeat these two rows until the scarf reaches your desired length.
Bind of the stitches in rib. Weave in ends. You can add fringe if you want.
As the scarf gets longer, you will easily see the pattern. It will be easy to see any mistakes, so keep an eye on the work you have already done. I left a long tail at the beginning of my work as a way to mark when to purl. When the tail is on your right side, you start and end the row in purl.
Putting Fringe on a Knit Scarf
Crotchet hooks can be used for so many things. Not only will you have all the tools necessary to learn how to crotchet, but they will save your knitting on so many occasions. The two biggest reasons to get them, though, are 1) to fix dropped stitches, and 2) to weave in ends. You can do both of these things in other ways, but using a crotchet hook is the easiest. At least for me.
This pattern has been saved to My Knitting Patterns.
So what are the best knitting needles for beginners? When you’re just getting started with knitting, it can be hard to know exactly what you like. Lucky for you, we’ve put together this handy guide to making the right choice for you.
Our best piece of advice for shopping for your first pair of knitting needles is to ask a friend to try theirs first. Until you know exactly the types of needles that work best in your hands, why invest tons of money in needles that you may or may not like.
Choosing the Length
Length is one of the biggest comfort factors with needles. Often longer needles are cumbersome and can be challenging to use for beginners! If you’re new to knitting, try out different lengths to see what suits your hands best.
As a rule of thumb: shorter is probably better for beginners.
A duvet’s tog rating is one of its most important attributes. This tells you how well a duvet will trap warm air. Basically, the higher the tog rating, the warmer the duvet.
Duvets start at a tog rating of around 3, which would be your lightweight summer duvet. A tog rating of between – is perfect for Spring and Autumn nights. A tog rating of over is perfect for cold Winters, and means you’ll be kept warm all night. Duvets with a lower tog rating are generally best for children also, as heavier duvets may well be uncomfortable and too warm for small children.
Natural Fillings are best known for being breathable, perfect for keeping you warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Duck & Goose Down is a popular natural filling that is used world wide. Down is the soft, insulation feathers found very close to the bird’s skin. These feathers are used to stuff both duvets and pillows, with goose being the higher quality, though more expensive, option. This type of filling provides a very warm and comfortable night’s sleep. However, it may irritate those who suffer with allergies, and it’s important to ensure that your goose or duck down is humanely sourced. Duvets stuffed with down are generally extremely durable, with a lifespan of around 10-20 years.
Washing your duvet is important in removing dust mites from your bedding. Washing at 60C is ideal for killing dust mites, and keeping your bedding fresh and dust-free.
The Right Pillow.
Your duvet is only as good as the pillow you rest your head on. A poorly chosen pillow can lead to a variety of back & neck problems, so picking the right one for you is important for maintaining your health.
You may wish to choose a pillow type based on how you sleep. For example, those who sleep on their backs are recommended to use a pillow of medium firmness, for support and comfort and to maintain the correct alignment of the spine throughout the night. Someone who sleeps on their side might choose a firm pillow, to help support their head, neck and spine as they sleep, while someone who sleeps on their front should probably opt for a soft pillow, to support the head without disrupting spine alignment.
Like duvets, pillows are also available with synthetic and natural fillings. You might choose a down filled pillow, which will be soft and comfortable. These pillows range in firmness (the more stuffing, the firmer they are). However, they are limited in just how much support they can provide. Synthetically filled pillows are becoming more and more popular, as memory foam options become more available due to their higher levels of support and associated health benefits.
Again, washing your pillows regularly is of utmost importance. Pillows can usually be washed in a large capacity machine. Washing at 60C is ideal for killing any dust mites that may be residing inside your pillow. Synthetic pillows are useful in this regard due to their quick drying time.
Many celebs knit, notably Nicole Kidman, Renee Zellweger, Drew Barrymore, Kate Hudson, Christina Hendricks, Kate Middleton, Sandra Bullock, Meryl Streep and Dakota Fanning. Oh and David Arquette, Ryan Gosling and even Antonio Banderas. So many more. They don’t waste time sitting in their trailers or palaces waiting for someone to tell them what to do next. They pump out works of art.
First of all thanks for reading my article to the end! I hope you find my reviews listed here useful and that it allows you to make a proper comparison of what is best to fit your needs and budget. Don’t be afraid to try more than one product if your first pick doesn’t do the trick.
Most important, have fun and choose your knitting needles wisely! Good luck!
So, TOP3 of knitting needles