Knitting needle, the tiny, little kit lying on the corners of your knitting case is undoubtedly one of the most important considerations for a knitting project. This little thing can create from smaller projects than its own size to bigger projects of huge size. This article is all about some of the best knitting needles on the market and guide to choose the best needle.
What is a Knitting Needle?
The knitting needle is a pair of sets of long, narrow rods used to knit yarn into cloth by hand. Generally, they have a tapered point on one end that forms stitches and a stopper on the other end that avoids slipping/falling of the stitches and keeps them together. Knitting needles are not as sharp as sewing needles. The narrow end of a needle is thrust into a loop, by tightening the loop a slip knot is made, and then by casting on knitting stitches is started.
Knitting needles, coming in a variety of sizes and styles target different types of knitters (Beginners or slower knitters, professionals, faster knitters, etc.) and projects.
Our Recommended the Best Knitting Needles
Here I have reviewed some of the best knitting needles on the market.
1. Chiaogoo Red Lace Circular Needle
The surgical steel provides the perfect surface for comfortable knitting that will allow your yarn to slide smoothly with no catch at all. The red lace circle makes it easy to find out in your needle box.
The lace needles have a longer needlepoint. The needles will be easier to use if the needle portion was a little shorter. The tip is sharp and works well with finer weight yarns, with DK/sport/ worsted or low twist yarns, you will get splitting. Joins are smooth.
The needles are sturdy but lightweight which allows you to work continuously with less cramping and without fatigue during long periods of knitting.
The engraved size on the needles is convenient for easy identification.
The multi-strand nylon-coated cable does not get tangled. They are good for heavy projects but not flexible enough for the magic loop. It has no “memory”. It retrieves its old position instead of the crimps or bends it has during knitting.
It has been claimed that Chiaogoo causes nickel allergies. Some stainless steels have nickel. So if you have nickel allergies, carbon fiber or casein needles would be better for you.
However, a product worth the money.
2. Bememo 70 Pieces Wig Making Pins Needles Set
A smart little kit for wig-making. Comes with a lot of things- 50 pieces 2 inches long wig T-pins, 20 pieces C type weaving needles in 2 sizes (10 pieces for each size). Excellent value for the included supplies.
Great for those who want to make their own wigs. It can be also used for hair weaving. More than enough t-pins which are useful to hold the wig on the foam head, easy to insert and remove. The needles are for weaving wigs. Multiple needles and t-pins are very helpful to make wigs within a short time.
Besides, C pins can be used for sewing in crafts, repairing leather, carpets, tents, and such things. T pins can also be used for crafts and block knitting.
They are made of nickel-plated steel which gives them a smooth and rust-free surface. Both needles and pins are strong.
The case is convenient to travel with and to keep things in place.
One claim about this product is that the needles are a little bendy.
Thus, you can choose it if you are a beginner or even a pro at making wigs.
3. LIHAO 36 PCS Bamboo Knitting Needle
If you’re a beginning knitter and looking for a variety of sizes or missing a size, this will be a good set for you. These needles are smooth, lightweight, and are great for those who suffer from joint pain. Moreover, it is more eco-friendly than metal needles.
Perfect length for working on thicker work.
The needles are not as slippery as metal needles. They provide a better grip for the yarn which is great for beginners. Your yarn will neither be caught nor slipped on these needles.
The needle sizes are inscribed on them which is very useful for the new knitter. The set also comes with a paper card with size gauges on it. The smaller sizes are not inscribed with their US or metric numbers.
If you’re learning how to knit and you want to try different sizes, you should pick up these without any hesitation. For the price, the quantity and quality are good both for the beginner and the experienced knitters.
The smaller needles are a little flimsy and some needles can bend with tight stitches. Some needle tips are pointy and some are dull in the same size. Using some fine grade sandpaper will remove the dullness. The finish also varies. But, for the price, they are not a big issue.
Thus, these needles are not long and slick like the metal ones, a little rough but keep the stitches in place, so for a new knitter, it can be a good option.
4. Wool Needle Set
Very convenient when you are seaming and weaving using a thicker yarn on the short loose ends. Knit faster and smoother than a traditional needle.
The metal point goes into the yarn easier without catching the yarn. They glide through the projects regardless of the thickness of the yarn and make finishing a breeze.
The extra-large eyes make it convenient to go through single or multiple strands of thread when your eyes aren’t working like before.
For the length cleaning up becomes quicker and easier. But, you should have longer ends due to the length of the needles. The ring is made of plastic so durability cannot be guaranteed.
The needles are lightweight and sharp enough to go through lightweight yarns easily without snagging the fibers. Good for people with joint issues for its lighter weight.
5. BetyBedy 36 PCS Bamboo Knitting Needle
Lightweight and sturdy bamboo needles, natural material so eco-friendly and has no chemical smell. Smoother and lighter which is great for those who knit a lot and have arthritis or joint issues.
This pack covers all the sizes of straight needles from 2.0 mm to 10.0 mm. All of the popular sizes are provided which gives you the freedom to work on any project. You get 18sets for the price of one.
Great for the new knitters who cannot manage slippery needles. The tips are not splintery and sharp which works well with thicker yarn. The yarn slides over needles smoothly while knitting.
The very smallest of the set may break if you try with very thicker yarn. Otherwise, they don’t feel fragile. One or two needles in the pack can be slightly bowed but that does not affect the knitting. You may need to sharpen them occasionally. Some of the ends may not be glued on, you have to buy the glue in that case.
The needle size is engraved on the sides, in the smaller sizes, it becomes difficult to read that. The size of the needle is written in mm, not in the US. A conversion chart will be handy to get the US size.
For the price, this set is great for a beginner who necessarily does not want to spend a lot by trying with different sizes.
6. 18 Pairs Bamboo Knitting Needle Set
The set comes with place markers, different size finishing needles, compact scissors, a measuring tape, and a 2 mm crochet hook for picking up dropped stitches. Considering the additional supplies, it’s a great deal for the price.
These lightweight bamboo needles are comfortable for those who have arthritis or joint pain issues. The needles are not slippery so they won’t fall off the stitches which are convenient for beginners. Made of natural material so do not have any chemical smell.
Comes with pair in 18 different sizes ranging from 2 mm to 10 mm. The thinnest needles are not good with heavier yarn. All the regular sizes are provided so it is convenient for a beginner to get started with knitting. Moreover, if you are a regular knitter, it will also be great for you to have all the necessary sizes together at such a price.
The needles are nicely made. The circular tubing used is also nice. Each size has a different color so it is convenient to find the size you want. The sizes are written in mm, not US sizes, but you can easily take the help of a conversion chart.
The joins on some of the needles may not be smooth. Stitches can snag and fuzz up the yarn. For items like socks, it is not a big issue, the snags remain unnoticeable. But, for finer items, it will catch others’ eyes.
All the needles are not clearly marked and the markings will fade away in time.
This pack covers all the sizes of straight needles that a beginner needs without breaking the bank!
7. Susan Bates 14099 Knit-Check for Knitting Needles Set
The Susan Bates Knit Check guide for Knitting Needles are handy and sturdy lightweight metal to check the size of your knitting needles. Paper knit checks end up tearing. The plastic gauge gets tangled up and not accurate in their inches/millimeters in long measurement.
For knitting needles and wooden crochet hooks which have no numbers or letters inscribed on them. Small and lightweight but doesn’t break like the plastic knit checks.
Perfect for beginners who cannot identify the sizes by just looking at the needles. The holes are true to size. It always gives you an accurate size. It also has a ruler on the side. It has both the mm size and the US size.
You can buy it with your starter kit for learning knitting. Flat so takes up almost no space in your needle bag. But it is quite sharp on the sides so pick it up carefully.
Thus, if you are a beginner, you can pick up this little tool for your knitting case without any hesitation.
8. Clover 3683 Interchangeable Circular Knitting Needles
An interchangeable set of circular needles made with TAKUMI bamboo. It comes in a wide range of sizes with a wide range of cord lengths for a variety of project types. The finish ensures a smooth sliding for each stitch.
Well-crafted needles with quite flexible cords. It comes with a nice zippered case. The high-quality case is convenient to keep it organized. You also can make a knitting needle case on your own.
This set comes with 12 sets of needles ranging from 3 to 15 and 5 different length cords. The flexible cords do not get knotted. The joins are very smooth.
The needles are wonderful. No splinters, sharp points, and flexible cords that make a magic loop a breeze. Recommend this set to beginners and advanced knitters.
There is no way to completely tighten the needle to the cord, it can catch your yarn and thus, cause dropped stitches if it comes apart.
After heavy use, the tips of the needles get blunt of some sizes.
How to Choose the Best Knitting Needle
The Type of Project You Want to Knit
Each knitted product has a specific pattern that needs a particular needle size. Before you start your project you have to know which needles are perfect for your project. Again, if you want to knit flat you can use both straight or circular needles, but if you want to knit something without a seam and in the round, you have to pick up circular needles.
Different projects demand different needle sizes. Needle size also determines how big/small your stitch will be. Bigger needles are for bigger stitches and looser fabrics. Smaller ones are for smaller stitches which will give you tighter and warmer fabrics.
Straight knitting needles come usually in lengths of 10” and 24”. This kind of knitting needle is used for knitting scarves, wraps, and small blankets.
Circular needles come in a general length of 16”, 20”, 24”, 29’’-32’. By using a needle gauge, you can choose the right needle size for a particular project. Your pattern will also tell you which size you will need for a project.
Basing on the style of knitting, knitting needles can be differentiated into four categories.
The joining cable between the circular needles allows you to leave the weight of the project on your lap; thus, your wrists and hands don’t get affected. Moreover, these wooden needles are very lighter. So who do a lot of knitting or have arthritis or other issues can work with these needles comfortably. You need not have any concern about where the other needle is. Great for knitting on the go. You can easily cast on 200-300 stitches at a time so they are good for big projects.
They are best for smaller or flat projects where there is less pressure on the needles while you work on scarves, baby blankets, wraps, or projects which are knitted in parts and sewn together later. Circular needles can be used for flat projects but straight needles cannot be used for the round and seamless pieces.
Double pointed needles are with points on both ends. It is made for knitting in round small items like socks, hats, etc. without seams. As both ends of these needles are pointed, the stitches can fall off easily.
These interchangeable needles can be used for both circular and straight needles. The points of these needles are short like the circular needles. They are more expensive than the other knitting needles, It comes in sets of different sizes and lengths which is very useful as a starter kit.
Needles of various materials are available in the market.
Metal knitting needles mainly refer to aluminum, brass, or nickel needle. Heavier and more durable than the other types of knitting needles. Aluminum needles are more available than nickel or brass needles. Nickel knitting needles are smoother, lighter, and more expensive.
As they have a more slippery surface, they will give your knitting a faster speed. They work best with especially wools, wool blends, and acrylic yarns.
Bamboo needles are lightweight. For having a slightly rough surface they give you a comfortable grip and keep the stitches in place without the fear of slipping off which is convenient for beginners. They combine great with smooth and lightweight yarns. They can be a cheap option for those who opt for slow and steady knitting.
Wooden needles are neither rough nor slippery, they have a smooth finish and good grip. So, they can be the best choice for both the experienced and the new knitters. Work best with slippery yarns. Wooden needles are somewhat expensive and not available like bamboo needles.
Very light and cheap. If you want to try knitting for the first time, you can buy them for testing whether you can manage it or not. They can be used for all types of yarns and yarn weights but work best with bulky yarns and great for knitting large stitches.
The texture of the Yarn
For a better knitting experience and the outcome, you have to choose your needle considering the texture of your yarn. If you have a yarn with good texture, go for a smoother needle-like metal or plastic needle. If your yarn is sleek choose a rougher needle-like bamboo or wood.
Needle tips of two types – sharp and pointed or round and blunted. You should choose sharp and pointed tips if you knit with fine yarns. A sharp, pointed tip makes it easier to get tighter stitches. Blunted tips are good for the heavier yarns.
Circular knitting Needles vs. Straight Needles
Straight needles are used for flat knitting —where the project is done in rows- turning the project and knitting. For example-scarves, blankets, coasters, etc. Come in many standard lengths. You will find the different lengths of the straight needle according to the length of your project.
A circular needle is actually two knitting needles that are joined by a flexible metal cable. A circular needle is used to knit in the round spirally without turning the project. You can knit cylindrical items, such as sleeves, snoods, and cowls with these needles.
However, Circular needles can easily be used to knit flat pieces as straight needles can do. Thus, circular needles are more versatile than straight needles. But flat needles can not knit in the round.
Metal vs. Bamboo Needles
Metal needles are more durable than bamboo needles and give you a quicker knitting experience. It’s the best option for the faster and experienced knitters. Metal needles are slick and work well with the yarns that tend to catch.
On the other hand, bamboo needles are light in weight and have a rough surface, and work well with smooth yarns. They are perfect for beginners as they are not slick like metals. Thus, the inexperienced knitters can manage to knit their stitch slowly without the fear of falling stitch. They are also cheaper than metal needles.
What is the magic loop?
Answer: A technique for working in the round without double-pointed needles. With this technique, you can knit small projects with longer than usual circular needles, you do not need to change to a smaller cable. You can knit any project on just one circular needle.
Can I use 24 or more inch circular needles for knitting a hat?
Answer: You can but it is not going to be comfortable. Your hat will be stretched out of proportion. Basically, you need circular needles that are smaller than the circumference of your finished project.
Does a bigger needle go faster than a smaller one?
Answer: Yes. They are used for loose knitting. As there are fewer stitches per inch in loose knitting, these needles go faster than the smaller ones.
Why are the garments produced with smaller needles finer and warmer?
Answer: The garments produced with smaller needles mean the garments with a firm gauge There is very little room in stitches so the threads can hardly move against each other and they are finely attached. As they are tightly knitted, they are warmer than the loosely knitted garments.
Which projects can be knitted from 16 inches or less to-36 inch circular needles?
Answer: Smaller than 16” needles for socks, little baby hats, or narrow seamless sleeves. 16” needles for hats for children through adults, adult sweaters, collars or sleeves, children’s pullovers, and cardigans, smaller cardigans, sweaters knit flat in pieces, and smaller shawls or shawlettes,29-32 for shawls, 36” for larger pullovers, cardigans, or circular shawls.
Therefore there are a lot of choices before you choose the best knitting needle whether you are a beginner knitter or a professional.
For learning knitting or just testing if you can do it, there are some damn easy solutions so that you might get all the starting supplies and not regret in case if you don’t feel continuing knitting.
And for the professional knitters, I have suggested efficient needles which will speed up your projects. Pick up the one you think best for you.