Many people confuse crocheting with knitting. Several are also wondering if you can use a knitting needle in crocheting.
Technically, you can crochet with a knitting needle. However, it would be challenging. You will surely have trouble picking up stitches with a straight end needle, compared to a hook where you can pick up stitches easily. A knitting needle is also longer than a crochet hook, and it can be unnatural and uncomfortable to maneuver. Crocheting with a knitting needle is slow and tiresome, so it’s really better to use a crochet hook.
If you still want to try using a knitting needle when crocheting, feel free to do it. However, you have to be extremely patient because it can get frustrating.
Crochet Hook Vs. Knitting Needle
The most obvious difference between crocheting and knitting are the utensils used. A crochet hook has a hook at the other end and is helpful for creating stitches and pulling the yarn. A knitting needle is straight with one pointed end. There are also other styles, such as double-pointed needles and circular needles.
One of the best ways to be successful in doing a crochet project is by using a good hook. However, choosing the right crochet hook can be confusing because there are several brands and types that are available in the market. Different types of yarn and projects call for different styles and shapes of hooks.
Parts of a Crochet Hook
- Head and Throat
The hook that catches the yarn is the head, while the shaped section below the hook is the throat which guides the yarn to the hook.
There are two types of hook: tapered and inline. A tapered hook has a rounded head, and it is not in line with the rest of the hook. An inline hook has a more pointed, deeper hook and a flatter throat. Its hook is leveled with the rest of the hook.
The section below the throat is the shank or shaft, which determines the hook size, and the size of the finished stitch will be. For instance, H8/5.00mm means the shaft’s diameter is 5 mm.
- Handle and Grip
The end where you hold the hook is the handle, while the part where you rest your thumb is the grip. Both parts are essential. The hook will not feel comfortable if the grip is too short or too bumpy. You might find a rubber grip comfortable. However, if you suffer from stiffness or pain with your hand while crocheting, a longer, ergonomic handle is the best for you.
Crochet Hook Materials
The most common materials used for crochet hooks are plastic and aluminum, but you can also find hooks made of steel, rubber, wood, bamboo, and glass. Different materials work best with different types of yarn. For instance, you are using a slippery yarn. A crochet hook made of glass or plastic might slide off too fast. Bamboo or wooden hook would be a much better choice.
Different Types of Crochet Hooks That are Suitable for Certain Types of Projects
- Tunisian Crochet
This type of crochet is not like your traditional crochet. This crochet project requires a particular Tunisian crochet hook. Tunisian crochet is also known as the Afghan crochet. The type of hook it requires should be elongated that comes with a stopper on one end. Tunisian crochet combines knitting and crochet skills which creates amazingly textured stitches resulting in plush and dense fabric.
- Broomstick Lace
Broomstick lace requires the use of a very large hook. A large plastic crochet hook will work dine for broomstick lace. It is also referred to as peacock eye crochet or jiffy lace, which is a style form the 19th century.
- Thread Crochet
Thread crochet requires small crochet hooks made of steel. Steel is preferred because they do not bend while you work. It is also crucial that you learn about how the thread weight is labeled and how the thread crochet hooks are numbered, as well.
- Bullion Stitch
Bullion stitch requires a smoother hook for easier crocheting.
Knitting needles come in different sizes, types, and materials.
Types of Knitting Needles
- Straight Point Needles
Straight point needle is the typical knitting needle you see in most general pictures of knitting needles. It has a tapered tip at one end and a straight shaft from the end of the tip to the other end where the knob is placed. The knob’s job is to help avoid stitches from sliding off the non-working end.
Straight point needles come in different lengths, but the most common are 10 and 14 inches.
- Double Pointed Needles
Double pointed needles have tapered tips at both ends that are separated by a straight shaft. They are typically used in sets of 4 or 5. They’re used to knit in the round, whether you are making flat round items such as a tube or a circle. You can also knit flat pieces when you use them in pairs.
Double pointed needles also come in all sorts of lengths from 4 to 14 inches. 6 to 8 inches are the most common lengths for this type of knitting needle.
- Circular Needles
Circular needles are two straight needles that don’t have knobs because they are joined into a circle by a flexible cable. This type of knitting needle was initially intended for knitting in the round, whether for tubular or flat pieces.
They also come in different lengths, typically 4 to 5 inches for the needle and the cord portions. The whole needle’s length varies from 9 to 60 inches. The most common lengths are 16 to 32 inches.
Knitting Needle Materials
Knitting needles are made from different materials. They have their respective properties. Several people may argue that the material they always use is the best; however, it is still a matter of preference.
You have to be aware that the gauge may also be affected by the material of the needle. The same needle may yield a tighter or looser gauge depending on the type of yarn.
Knitting needles can be made of:
- Metal (steel, brass, aluminum, nickel-plated)
- Carbon fibers
- Plastic and more
Metal needles are sturdy, a bit heavy and slick. Several people claim that they are able to knit quicker with a metal needle because the stitches move smoothly along the slick shaft.
Bamboo needles are flexible, strong, warm, and light. This type of needle is ideal for beginners because they grip yarn more.
Plastic needles are light, strong, and flexible. They can be slick, as well.
Wood needles are not as strong as bamboo needles, but they still share a lot of the same qualities.
Carbon fibers are highly durable, warm, and a bit flexible. However, they tend to have a scratchy feel to them, but it lessens when they have a metal tip.
The Difference Between Crocheting and Knitting
Many people tend to confuse the two or think they are just the same. They have a lot of differences, contrary to what others think.
Knitting has only two types of stitches – knitting and purling. They can be mixed and matched in various ways to create different patterns. The stitches are formed in rows, and the active stitches are held in place by the needle itself.
Crocheting has a broad range of stitches you can use for your projects. There is no need to hold the active stitches because they are formed one at a time. Crochet stitches are more intricate the knitting stitches despite the fact that crocheting is even faster than knitting.
Yarn is the few aspects where crocheting and knitting are similar. Yarns used in crocheting can also be used in knitting. One exception is the use of thread. It is highly difficult to use this in knitting.
The most common accessories for crocheting are:
- Crochet hooks
- Gauge swatches
- Finishing needles
- Row or stitch counter
The most common accessories for knitting are:
- Knitting needles
- Stitch markers
- Point protectors
- Measuring tape
You may have heard this word before, but you’re not sure where. Did you know that there is a tool that is a product of the fusion between a knitting needle and a crochet hook? It is called the Knook. It makes knitting with a crochet hook easier.
- Those who crochet will find it comfortable to use.
- No need to cast on stitches.
- The stitches stay on the cord while you are working through the pattern.
- The sources for knooking patterns are still limited.
- The nylon cord that is attached to the knook doesn’t come with a stopper.
- You have to learn new stitches.
Which is easier to learn: knitting or crochet?
Since knitting would take a lot more patience than crocheting, several people find it harder to learn. However, it will all come down to what feels comfortable to you. Usually, whichever you learned first will be the one you will find easier.
Although you can use a knitting needle in crocheting, it would still be ideal to use the proper tool. Knitting needles are made for knitting, and crochet hooks are made for crocheting. It’s that simple.