Have you ever wondered what size crochet hook you should use for your project? Or what type of crochet hook you should use?
Crochet hooks are the foundation of any crochet project. They come in all shapes and sizes, and choosing the right one can make all the difference. In this ultimate guide to crochet hooks, we’ll cover everything you need to know to choose the perfect hook for your next project.
The Ultimate Guide to Crochet Hooks:
Everything You Need to Know
If you’re new to crochet or looking to upgrade your current hooks, this guide has got you covered. We’ll go over the different types of crochet hooks, what materials they’re made of, and what projects they’re best suited for. Plus, we’ve included a handy reference chart so you never have to guess what size hook to use again.
Understanding the Anatomy of a Crochet Hook
To fully understand how to choose the perfect crochet hook, it’s important to first understand the anatomy of a hook. Each part of the hook plays a crucial role in determining its size, shape, and overall performance.
Starting at the top, the head of the hook is where the yarn is looped to begin stitching. The shape and size of the head can vary depending on the style of hook you are using.
When looking at the head of the crochet hook, there are three parts that can vary between hook brands. The point of the hook, the throat (or groove), and the lip.
The point of the hook is the very tip. This is the part of the hook that you push through the stitches. The point can be blunt (rounded), or sharp. A blunt point can make it difficult to get into your stitches (it has a tendency to slide on some yarns), while a sharp tip can split the strand of yarn instead of going around the strand.
Depending on the yarn you are using, you may come to prefer one kind of crochet hook tip more than the other.
I find with more slippery yarns and finer weight yarns (Light Weight and finer), I prefer the pointy tip. The finer the yarn, the less likely the tip will split the strand and the easier it is for me to find the spaces between the stitches.
I like using a more blunt (rounded) tip for bulkier yarns because the strand of yarn is wider and it is easier to find the spaces between the stitches; without the tip splitting the strand of yarn as I crochet.
The throat of the hook is either straight, or rounded and it’s where the yarn sits and is held when you make your stitch. The throat is the area that determines how much yarn is held on the hook when you are creating your stitches.
The lip of the hook is the actual hook part of the hook. It can be either rounded, or sharp and straight. A sharp and straight lip can snag on stitches as you pull through, but I prefer this type as I find it holds the yarn in the groove better as I work my stitches. I also prefer it because I use this part of the hook to work under individual loops and I find it can find the space between a front loop and back loop quickly and easily.
The shank of the hook is the main body, and it can be straight or tapered. I much prefer the straight crochet hook style because the shank maintains a consistent size. I find a tapered shank can cause looser stitches since it increases in size towards the handle of the hook. So if you use too much of the shank to create your stitches, the loops will grow in size for each part of the stitch you are making.
The handle of the hook is the area where the crocheter holds onto while stitching. The size and shape of the handle can vary greatly, and it’s important to choose one that is comfortable for your hands.
Some crochet hooks are designed with larger, easier to hold handles that are ergonomic and can help you to crochet for longer periods of time.
Which style of handle you prefer is a personal choice and something you will learn by trying different handles while you are crocheting. Some handles will be easier to work with depending on how you hold your crochet hook (pencil grip or a knife grip).
Different brands of crochet hooks have different lengths. I personally prefer longer crochet hooks. I find them easier to use when I use a pencil grip and equally easy to use in a knife grip. Since I switch between the two hook holds to reduce my hand fatigue, I gravitate toward the longer crochet hooks.
Some longer crochet hooks are the Furls Streamline hooks and the Prym Crochet Hooks. Some shorter crochet hooks that I can recommend are the Clover Amour hooks.
I recently (2023) used a Prym hook to crochet when I was at my Mother-in-laws and I fell in love with it. Since then I’ve bought the entire set. I have always disliked plastic hooks – so this is a bit of a shocker to me. They are basically weightless and the long shaft length, pointy tip and inline head and shank are all things I love in a hook. They are also very affordable.
Tapered vs Inline Crochet Hooks
Generally, crochet hooks fall into 2 categories. The inline crochet hook, or the tapered crochet hook. For many years these have been referred to as the Bates (inline) and Boye (tapered) styles. You will notice that the point, throat and lip vary between the two main brands shown below.
Tapered Crochet Hooks
The tapered crochet hook shape has a slightly angled head that moves into a narrow neck before reaching the shank of the hook. This angle and narrower neck area can result in tighter stitches, so keep an eye on your gauge if you are new to using this type of hook.
Inline Crochet Hooks
An inline crochet hook has the same size head and shank and the head is aligned with the shank (not on an angle). This allows you to move smoothly from head to shank and to keep your tension the same and the stitch the same size.
In the past few years you may also have noticed that there are new crochet hooks on the market that use parts of each hook style to create a new style of hook that is more ergonomic to use.
Now that we’ve covered the anatomy of the crochet hook, let’s dive into the different types of crochet hooks and their unique features.
Different Types of Crochet Hooks
Crochet hooks come in a variety of options, each with its unique features. From the material of the hook to its size, shape, and handle, every detail matters. The most common types of crochet hooks are the standard hook, Tunisian hook, steel hook, ergonomic hook, and interchangeable hook.
The standard hook is the original crochet hook option. Standard crochet hooks can be made of different materials, including plastic, metal, or bamboo.
Tunisian hooks, on the other hand, have an elongated shaft, resembling a knitting needle.
Steel hooks are much smaller than standard crochet hooks and they are typically used to create fine lacework and delicate crochet projects using crochet thread.
More recently, ergonomic hooks have become popular. You can find standard crochet hooks that have had ergonomic handles added to them and hook manufacturers that create crochet hooks with ergonomics in mind.
Ergonomic hooks have a larger handle, allowing for a comfortable grip, especially during prolonged crochet sessions. They come in different sizes and shapes, and some have a thumb rest to help distribute pressure evenly.
Finally, interchangeable hooks are versatile hooks that allow you to switch between hook sizes quickly.
Materials Used for Crochet Hooks
Crochet hooks come in a variety of materials, each with unique properties that affect the look, feel, and even the sound of your stitches. Aluminum is the most common crochet hook material used. Aluminum hooks are lightweight, affordable, and durable, making them a great choice for beginners. They aluminum finish provides a smooth surface that allows yarn to glide easily, resulting in smooth, even stitches.
Another popular material for crochet hooks is plastic. Plastic hooks are also lightweight and affordable, making them an excellent choice for beginners. They also come in a wide range of colors, making it easy to organize your collection and find the right hook for your project. However, plastic hooks are not as durable as aluminum or other materials, and they may develop nicks or rough spots over time.
For those who prefer a more natural feel, wooden crochet hooks are a great option. Wooden hooks are smooth and they warm to the touch, providing a comfortable grip that can reduce hand fatigue during prolonged crochet sessions. The wood surface has a bit of grip which will slow down the speed at which the yarn glides over the hook.
Finally, if you’re looking for a high-end option, consider investing in a set of ergonomic hooks made from materials like resin, steel, titanium, or even gold. These special hooks offer a comfortable grip, and their unique materials can add a touch of luxury to your crochet time. However, they can be quite expensive, so they may not be the best choice for beginners who are still deciding what kind of hook they want to use, or those on a tight budget.
Understanding the different crochet hook materials used for crochet hooks is just one step in choosing the right hook for your project. In the next section, we’ll explore how to match your hook to your yarn to achieve the perfect tension and stitch definition.
Choosing the Right Hook for Your Project
Choosing the right hook for your project is crucial to achieving the perfect tension and stitch definition. It’s important to consider the type of yarn you’ll be using, as well as the stitch pattern and gauge required for your pattern.
If you are picking up some yarn and a hook to practise crochet stitches, or to make something without a pattern, the answer is actually right on the yarn label! The yarn label will suggest the right size crochet hook to give you the perfect crochet fabric. This will usually be the right hook for the project.
When you are following a written crochet patterns, the pattern will tell you the recommended hook size. This may be different than the one on the yarn label because the Designer has chosen the hook to create a specific fabric or project. When you are following a pattern it is important to do a gauge swatch, especially if the finished project is meant to be worn.
As a general rule of thumb…
For finer yarns, such as lace-weight yarn or sock weight yarn, you’ll want to choose a smaller hook size to ensure your stitches are tight and even. Conversely, for thicker yarns like bulky weight, chunky weight or super bulky weight yarn, you’ll want a larger hook to create looser, more open stitches.
Additionally, some stitches may benefit from a specific hook shape. For example, Tunisian crochet requires a longer hook with a stopper on the end to keep stitches from slipping off. Tunisian crochet hooks are also known as Afghan Hooks or Crohooks. They are meant for Tunisian crochet stitches which is different than standard crochet.
The Craft Yarn Council recommends the following crochet hooks based on yarn weights
Source: Craft Yarn Council’s www.YarnStandards.com
By considering your project’s yarn, stitch pattern, and unique requirements, you’ll be able to choose the perfect hook for your next crochet project. In the next section, we’ll provide a handy reference chart for hook sizes to make choosing even easier.
The crochet hook size conversion chart includes different hook sizes ranging from 2.00 mm (millimeters) to 30 mm (millimeters). The millimeters of the hook is the diameter of the shaft. If you do not see a size on your crochet hook you can use a hook gauge tool to find the actual size of the hook.
Handy Reference Chart for Hook Sizes
By considering various factors such as yarn weight, stitch pattern, and project requirements, you can narrow down the selection of crochet hooks to choose from. The hook size is an essential factor that plays a significant role in the success of any crochet project, as it determines the final size, tension, and texture of your work.
To help you choose the right crochet hook, we’ve compiled a handy reference chart for hook sizes. Hook sizes are determined by a letter or number, with larger numbers indicating larger hooks. The chart lists the most commonly used hook sizes in both US and metric measurements, making it easier to select the right hook for your project.
It’s important to note that some patterns may call for a specific hook size, and some patterns may list hooks in metric sizing only. In these cases, referring to the chart and converting hook sizes can ensure that your project turns out as intended.
By using the reference chart, you’ll be able to quickly identify the hook size you need and get started on your crochet project with confidence. With the right hook and yarn combination, you’ll be able to create beautifully crafted crochet pieces that are sure to impress.
Crochet Hook Conversion Chart
|9.00 mm||M/N – 13|
|10.00 mm||N/P – 15|
|30 mm||T/X – 65|
Using the right crochet hook is essential for every project you crochet. The type of hook you use can make a noticeable difference in your finished project. By understanding the anatomy of a hook, the different types and materials available, and choosing the right size, you can confidently select the perfect hook for your project. Don’t be afraid to experiment and find your perfect fit, but remember to consider these factors first, before you look at how pretty the handle is! As you embark on your next crochet adventure, keep in mind that the right hook is the foundation of any great masterpiece. So, grab your hook, yarn, and get crocheting!
Common Crochet Hook Questions:
What size is a US 7 crochet hook?
A size US 7 crochet hook is a 4.50 mm crochet hook. You can substitute with a 4.25 mm or a 4 mm (G) crochet hook but be sure to check your gauge if you are making a project that is meant to be worn.
What is the most popular crochet hook size?
The most popular crochet hook size really depends on the yarn you are crocheting with. In North America we tend to use a lot of Medium Weight / Worsted Weight yarn, so the most popular crochet hook size is a 5.5 mm (I) or 6 mm (J).
What size is my crochet hook?
If you have a crochet hook (or knitting needle) without a size listed on it, you can use this handy tool to check your hook size (it goes all the way up to Crochet Hook Size P):
I have had and have used this tool for many years! I like to collect antique crochet hooks when I see them at thrift stores and antique stores – and many times there are no sizes listed on those hooks!
What happens when you use the wrong crochet hook size?
If you use the wrong crochet hook size your finished project could end up smaller, or larger than you intended.
What if my crochet gauge doesn’t match? How do I know if I’m using the wrong size hook?
When you are crocheting, if the fabric is wavy (not resting flat) you may be using a hook that is too large for the yarn (or you are crocheting more loosely than the pattern designer). You need to make tighter stitches or move to a smaller sized hook.
If the project starts to fold into inself (or if you are crocheting in rounds it begins to cup up like a bowl) that means the crochet hook you are using is too small for the yarn you are using (or you are crocheting more tightly than the pattern designer). You need to crochet more loosely, or move to a larger sized hook.
Common Crochet Hooks
- Knit Picks Wood Crochet Hooks
- Aluminum Crochet Hooks
- Boye Ergonomic Steel and Aluminum Crochet Hooks
- Bates Silvalume Aluminum Crochet Hooks
Steel Crochet Hooks
Common Ergonomic Crochet Hooks
- Clover Amour Soft Ergonomic Hooks – many sizes available – you can purchase them individually or in sets. The regular hook set includes sizes 2.25 mm (B), 2.75 mm (C), 3.25 mm (D), 3.50 mm (E) 3.75 mm (F), 4.00 mm (G), 4.50 mm (7), 5.00 mm (H), 5.50 mm (I) and 6.00 mm (J).
- Prym Ergonomic Wool Crochet Hooks
- Polymer Clay Handled Ergonomic Hooks – my favorite is Pedro’s Plaques
- Furls Ergonomic Crochet Hooks
- Extra Long Ergonomic Crochet Hooks
Common Tunisian Crochet Hooks
- Interchangeable Takumi Clover Tunisian Hooks
- Knitter’s Pride Ginger Tunisian Crochet Hooks
- Lantern Moon Tunisian Bequest Hooks
- Aluminum Crochet Hooks
Common Interchangeable Crochet Hooks
Where Can I Find Jumbo Crochet Hooks:
I have the Jumbo Crochet Hooks from Clover Amour. They are ergonomic and lightweight but they are a plastic-type material (not my favorite kind of hook to work with). They are ergonomic and lightweight but the handle is a harder plastic, not soft and rubbery like the Amour.
You can see the available Jumbo Hook sizes here:
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If you’ve ever found yourself browsing through a sea of crochet hook sizes and styles, wondering which one will best suit your project, you’re in the right place. In this ultimate guide to crochet hooks, we’ll discuss all the basics – from size and material to which type of hook is best for your next project. Whether you’re just getting started with crochet or you’ve been crocheting for years, this comprehensive guide will make sure you have the tools you need for success.
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“With so many different crochet hooks on the market, it can be hard to know which one is right for your project! No worries, this ultimate guide to crochet hooks has got you covered. From picking the right size to figuring out which type of crochet hook to use, you’ll be ready to start your next project in no time. #crochetlove #crocheting