for Knitters and Crocheters
Having worked in the retail fiber business and being an experienced knitter and crocheter, I have had exposure to quite a products over the years and have my favorites. I decided to share some of them with you as the holiday gifting time is fast approaching. There are so many choices on the market and while every crafter finds what works best for them and that they prefer, I am the same. I am not saying that your choices of items are wrong or bad, just that these are my favorites.
Needles: I love interchangeable needles. My preference is for the Knit
Picks Options wood needles. They have several different varieties now and they all are good, just select the set that appeals the most to you. PROS: The points are sharp enough for most of my knitting pattern preferences, they never have burrs that can catch your yarn, the joins are smooth and you can arrange your needles to almost any length. Additional tips and cables are not overly expensive and therefore easy to have multiples of the sizes you use the most. CONS: The cable joins do wear out and need to be replaced every year or two and they can be difficult to find locally and ordering online requires shipping (for orders under $70).
Second runner up is a tie between the Chiao Goo Spin needles and new Lykke Driftwood needles. They are both well-made and have the most of the same characteristics of the Knit Picks (and bonus the Lykke are interchangeable with Knitter’s Pride and Knit Picks cables). CONS: The Chiao Goo Spin cables are stiff nylon and not as flexible as the Knit Pick’s cables and the tips on the Lykke (the set I own) are not very sharp and make even a k2tog sometimes difficult.
Stitch Markers: There are so many different kinds of stitch markers out there these days, that choosing can be overwhelming. Some have charms on them, some are metal, some plastic, some round, some triangular. Really it comes down to what best suits your style of knitting. I prefer Clover’s Soft Stitch Ring Markers. They don’t bother my fingers as they sit on the needle and are easy to get my needle into when I slide them from one to the other.
Hooks: I love the Knitter’s Pride Symphonie Dreamz hooks. The shape
works well for my style of crocheting and they fit well in my hand. I can also use them for narrow Tunisian Crochet projects as the shaft does not vary in width. However they may not be appropriate for everyone as they do not offer an ergonomic style for those with hand issues. For crocheters wanting an ergonomic version, the Clover Amour hooks are a relatively low cost choice and are very comfortable to work with. CONS: Not all crocheters like the same style of hook, so this choice really comes down to what works best and feels the most comfortable for you. If you struggle to make stitches and are having problems with the yarn staying on your hook, try a different style.
Stitch Markers: I love the Clover Locking Ring Markers. They are my favorite brand of this style of marker. PROS: They are flexible and do not break. Some of the less expensive and other brands are more brittle and break after some use. I have NEVER had one of these break on me. HINT: Always store them in the open position and they will be easier to slide into your project. CONS: They only come in the mixed package of orange and green, no rainbow colors.
Please keep in mind that these are only suggestions and what I personally like to craft with. They are not meant to override your choices of crafting materials, please choose the tools that work best for you.