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Choosing the Right Crochet Hook... for you!

Saturday, October 23, 2021

Like many of you, I’m sure, I’m a member of a number of different crochet-related groups on Facebook.

One question that I see frequently is “What crochet hook should I buy?” Plenty of suggestions get thrown

about, but very few responses reflect the reality of choosing a hook… the real answer is, “it depends.” We

can all share our favorite hooks, but honestly, choosing the right hook is really more of a question of

choosing the right hook FOR YOU!


There are many different types and styles of crochet hooks out there, and not every style or type works for every crocheter. Let’s take a look at some factors to consider when choosing a crochet hook.


INLINE VS TAPERED


Inline hooks have a head that is “in line” with the shaft of the hook; in other words, it doesn’t extend any

wider than the rest of the hook. An inline hook usually has a deep mouth, and comes to a sharper angle

than a tapered hook. Many fans feel that they get a more consistent stitch size with an inline hook, but

some people find that due to the deeper mouth, inline hooks “catch” more, and slow them down.


Tapered hooks have a head that extends past/is wider than the shaft of the hook. The mouth is not usually

as deep as an inline hook. In contrast to an inline, some people feel that a tapered hook glides more easily,

but others feel that it’s harder to stitch consistently. Your mileage may vary.



MATERIAL TYPE


Another consideration when choosing a hook is the material used to make the hook. Aluminum,

plastic/acrylic, wood, and bamboo are all common material types, with aluminum probably the most

common. There, too, preference comes into play. Some people will change up their hooks based on what

fiber they are using; wood and bamboo may not glide as easily as aluminum, which may make them

preferable for more slippery yarns, while aluminum may be preferable for yarns that are a little rougher

and more likely to catch on the hook. There is also a weight and feel factor in terms of material - you want

to consider how the hook feels in your hand (more on that later…).


STANDARD VS ERGONOMIC


This is actually a big consideration for some people. I have a friend who almost exclusively uses standard

crochet hooks - your basic aluminum hooks you can buy almost anywhere. I, on the other hand, rarely use

anything but an ergonomic hook, especially when using smaller hook sizes. Ergonomic hooks typically

have a wider handle of some sort to allow the user to use a loose grip on the hook, with less stress on the

hands and wrists. Some have cushioned handles, others have shaped, solid-construction handles. 



COST


There is a wide range of pricing of crochet hooks. Some, such as a standard aluminum hook, are

inexpensive and available almost anywhere, and are easily accessible to those on a tight budget. Big box

craft stores often carry their own house brands of ergonomic hooks at the lower end of the price range.

Other stores and websites carry a wide variety of brands, including some inexpensive no-name brands.

Then you start moving up the ladder to a wide range of brand name crochet hooks and a number of

different custom hook creators. When looking at ergonomic hooks, there is an element of “you get what

you pay for.” You may spend less on a set of no-name hooks from a discount seller, but is it really a deal if

the handle starts coming loose 6 months later? (Yes, I learned this lesson the hard way!)


FIT


This is probably the most important factor to consider, although for some, it may be the most challenging.

The hook you choose needs to fit comfortably in your hand, ultimately an extension of your hand/arm. Test

out different brands - some hooks are longer, others shorter. Some are narrow, some are wide. Over the

past 3 years, I have tried almost every major brand crochet hook out there, and keep coming back to my

preferred brand because of how it fits in my hand. You need to think about how you hold your hook, as well

as the size of your hand. My preferred brand fits perfectly in my hand, but for a friend of mine, the hooks

are too short, and rub the side of her hand the wrong way. I have other friends who love a popular, more

expensive brand, but they’re too wide for my short fingers and don’t sit right in my hand. If you love

crocheting, you’re going to be spending a lot of time with a hook in your hand. You want to make sure that

it’s going to be comfortable.


If you’re looking for a new hook, my ultimate advice to you is this:Try out a variety of hooks in different styles and materials. Don’t commit to a set right awayIf you have the money, buy a single hook in your favorite size in the styles/brands you want to try, and

test them out. Even better, see if your crocheting friends have something you want to try and ask to borrow

it, even just to crochet a couple of rows with it.


Obviously, consider your budget. You do get what you pay for, but you also don’t want to go bankrupt.

Once you figure out your preferences, watch for coupons and sales. For some hooks, it may be cheaper

to buy the set with a coupon, for others, you may need to watch for sales and buy a hook or two at a time


Finally, have fun learning more about yourself as a crocheter!





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