g Text Version
Beauty & Self
Books & Music
Food & Wine
Health & Fitness
Hobbies & Crafts
Home & Garden
News & Politics
Religion & Spirituality
Travel & Culture
TV & Movies

Bored? Games!
Take a Quiz
Rate My Photo

Autism Spectrum Disorders
Mental Health
Blogs / Social Networking
Kidney Disease
Today in History

All times in EST

Clairvoyance: 08:00 PM

Full Schedule
g Knitting Site

BellaOnline's Knitting Editor


Selecting Knitting Needles

Having the right tool for the job can mean the difference between success and not even being able to get started. When it comes to knitting, your needles are some of your most important tools. Using the wrong needle will make your knitting nearly impossible, while using the right needles will help you to knit in a skilled and flowing manner.
Consider these factors when you select your needles:

Gauge The thickness of your needle is usually determined by the weight of the yarn that you are knitting with. If you are using a pattern, the suggested needle thickness will be included. You may also see a suggested needle size listed on the ball band or label of the yarn you plan to use to knit with. If you tend to knit tightly or are a very new knitter, try going one size up. If you knit loosely, try going one size down. After you knit a gauge swatch you may need to change your needle size to get the right gauge.

Material What material your needles are made out of is mostly based on the texture of the yarn you are using. Grippy, springy yarns like wool can stay well on smooth, slick aluminum or nickel plated needles. Super slick cotton is easier to knit on grippy wooden needles. Feel the texture of bamboo needles with your hands. I have found that most bamboo needles are slippery smooth, but some have a hand carved finish that is a little bit grippy. Needle makers are constantly trying out new materials, yet the smoothness of the needle is the main factor. Whether the colors are natural materials or feel cool or warm is more a matter of personal preference. Feel free to have fun and see how different materials feel when you knit.

Color The color of your needles should stand out from the color of yarn you are using. You want to avoid knitting white yarn with white needles. It is hard on the eyes to try to differentiate between the needles and the yarn. Needles in a color that stands out form your yarn will allow you to see your stitches as they are being made and where they are at on your needles.

Length You want to look for needles that are just long enough to hold your stitches and give you room to knit, but not much more. Long needles are great when you are knitting long, wide afghans and blankets, but the extra needle length will just get in the way when you are knitting a narrow washcloth or necktie. Longer needles will also let you distribute the weight of a growing blanket across the needles instead of trying to bunch it up on too short needles.

Needle Type Needle types include circular, straights, and double pointed needles. This depends on the techniques used in knitting your item. Items that are knit flat can usually be knit on two straight needles. Circular knit items that are less than about 12 inches in circumference can be knit on double pointed needles. Circular items greater than about 12 inches in cirucmference or best knit on circular needles. There are some techniques that can allow knitters to use circular needles in almost any situation, but those are fun and special techniques to learn another time.

Add +Selecting+Knitting+Needles to Twitter Add +Selecting+Knitting+Needles to Facebook Add +Selecting+Knitting+Needles to MySpace Add +Selecting+Knitting+Needles to Del.icio.us Digg +Selecting+Knitting+Needles Add +Selecting+Knitting+Needles to Yahoo My Web Add +Selecting+Knitting+Needles to Google Bookmarks Add +Selecting+Knitting+Needles to Stumbleupon Add +Selecting+Knitting+Needles to Reddit

How To Make A Knit Stitch
Cable Knitting Tools and Techniques
Stitch Markers and Lifelines
Related Articles
Editor's Picks Articles
Top Ten Articles
Previous Features
Site Map

For FREE email updates, subscribe to the Knitting Newsletter

Past Issues

Printer Friendly
tell friend
Tell a Friend
Email Editor

Content copyright © 2015 by Lisa Linnell-Olsen. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Lisa Linnell-Olsen. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Lisa Linnell-Olsen for details.


g features
Fair Isle Style Book Review

Review of Cozy Knits

Knitting Reimagined Review

Archives | Site Map


Past Issues

Less than Monthly

BellaOnline on Facebook

| About BellaOnline | Privacy Policy | Advertising | Become an Editor |
Website copyright © 2015 Minerva WebWorks LLC. All rights reserved.

BellaOnline Editor