There are so many crochet hook options out there, it can be overwhelming when trying to decide on the best one for you. Whether you’re new to crochet or just looking for the best hook for a new project, we’ve rounded up all sorts of hook styles and info for you.
Where to Start
If you’re new to crochet, narrowing down hook options can be challenging. Start with something affordable and a larger hook size (roughly H/8 [5.00mm] – K/10.5 [6.50mm]). A great place to start is your ball or skein of yarn. Many of the labels include a suggested hook size that will pair well with the yarn. The thicker the yarn, the larger the crochet hook. As for material, aluminum hooks are affordable and readily available at your local craft store. If you find one you like, purchasing a set of varying sizes will keep you ready for any project!
Many crocheters prefer metal hooks because of their smooth hook surface that allows for quick crocheting. Metal is generally an affordable option and regular hooks are most commonly made in aluminum, while the smaller thread crochet hooks are made of steel. You may find that all-metal hooks become uncomfortable in your hands after a while, so a metal hook with a cushy rubber or wooden grip is an excellent ergonomic alternative.
Wood and Bamboo Hooks
Bamboo is an eco-friendly hook option that is also strong and light-weight. There will be more friction with your yarn as compared to metal hooks, but bamboo can smooth slightly over time. Wood hooks will be marginally heavier and can be more expensive. If you prefer eco-friendly, look for sustainably harvested wood styles. The wood surface also has friction with the yarn. Because of the increased friction, wood hooks are great for slippery yarns such as silk or rayon. These can come in a variety of different shapes to comfortably fit your hand.
Tunisian Crochet Hooks
If you’re interested in Tunisian crochet, you’ll need a special hook to allow for multiple loops that sit on the handle. While regular crochet hooks are short and have a wider grip area, Tunisian crochet hooks are long with a uniform handle and usually a stopper at the end to prevent loops from sliding off. You can use Tunisian hooks for regular crochet, but not vice-versa. In addition to long straight Tunisian hooks, there are also interchangeable crochet hooks, which come in a set of different sizes, cords and stoppers. These are a nice alternative because the cord is flexible, and you have a range of hooks sizes and lengths for any project.
Of course, there are all sorts of special crochet hooks out there ranging from plastic to clay and glass. Want a set of hooks shaped like magic wands? Those exist! What about a colorful wooden hook with a decorative epoxy and resin tip? Yep, that exists too. If you want to splurge on a special hook, pay attention to which size hook you’re grabbing for most often, then search on ETSY for some fun handmade options in that size.
While in MOST CASES you will need a PROPER Tunisian Hook to do a tunisian project, there are a few instances where you can get away with a regular crochet hook FITTED with a STITCH STOPPER such as you would put on knitting needles. I have crocheted new handbag straps in nylon cording with just such a set-up because straps don’t require wide width even when doubled to stitch into a tube as I have. There is also a little “lacey” like “ascot” pattern I have seen (but not yet tried) that is fairly narrow in width and think I could fit onto a regular hook fitted with a stopper. But once you pass around 6″ you won;t want to work on a regular hook.
Yes I prefer the aluminum ones. There is rubber to slide on the handles to make ergonomically.
This was also informative for those that don’t know.
I agree about the metal hook having less resistance and it’s nice to have an ergonomic handle on them. I might add, to think about the way that you crochet, loosely or tightly? Some hooks are rounded and some are tapered so you might have a tendency to get too tight and have a harder time. There are also different angles of the hook. Everybody holds the hook differently, the angle that you hold your hook or grab the yarn with it may work better with one type or the other. Try a Bates hook and a Boye hook to see which suits you better. These are examples of the two main types of hooks. My experience with my first set of steel hooks was disappointing. My grandmother’s steel hooks were really well made and even the smallest one could grab and hold the thread so I thought they would all be that way. I found that a lot of steel hooks, because they are so small, are simply not made well enough. They don’t have the space in the hook or the definition of the hook to grab the thread and hold it in the hook till you have made all your yarn overs and pulled the thread through. When I bought my second set I tried one first and had much better luck with that set. I saw one set where all the hooks looked the same, no matter what size. You need to look at all the hooks and if you can, try them out before you buy. Happy stitching.
Good read! But what are the two different styles of the throat of the hook used for? One is more flat and wide, the other more rounded. Thank you
The tapered hook has a straight hook with a low thumb grip
The inline hook has a deeper throat with the thumb grip higher up
The style is a personal choice, my preference for 60 yrs tapered by Boye
I just bought a new set of Aluminum hooks for a “special” project. My originals are all still straight an in great condition. But I was FORTUNATE! to receive my GRANDMOTHERS “steels” when she passed. They are THE BEST.
I would suggest, if you are patient and willing to take on the hunt…find an estate auction/sale or a “thrift” type shop where many of “Granny’s” things end up and grab up those steels, crochet hooks, knitting needles, etc. You may get a great bargain AND you may find a superior product.
But lacking time and patience shop smart and check comments/reviews by other needlewomen.
Very informative info – thank you
Is the larger hook for larger stitches.
Hi Valerie. Technically yes. But more importantly it’s also for thicker yarn. The yarn wants to fit comfortably in the throat of the hook. If you use a hook that is too small for the thickness of your yarn the resulting work will be unpleasantly tight to work with and wear, and if you use a hook that is too big your work might look sloppy and loose. You can make tall stitches with any weight yarn and hook – if tall is what is mean by large in the question.
Creative Crochet Corner
The LARGER plastic hooks are for thicker yarns (as stated) BUT they are also for projects where you a blending two or more strands of yarn to achieve a color blending effect. My experience is that those large hood are usually plastic; my guess that would be preferable for a lighter weight in your hand.
I much prefer the metal hooks. The plastic ones are too sticky and really slow me down.
I prefer aluminum Susan Bates all sizes easier to work with
I agree…about the metal hooks. The polished aluminum offer smoothness and speed. I don;t mind SOME of the plastic hooks especially when it comes to the EXTREME SIZES, but wooden hooks have been a disappointment to me–perhaps because the ones I’ve used are Chinese made and that are rough, snag yarn and “drag” even if they are well sanded/finish and waxed.
I also PREFER the “tapered” style of hooks over the “in-line”; I like the thumb indent for the grip and tapered makes for fast action for me.
This was interesting but will have to experiment before deciding what will work best foe me.