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Knitting needles are available in different sizes, styles, and materials as well. It can be puzzling to determine which type to use when. If you’re shopping your set for the first time, going through your classic knitting trove, or growing your collection, this guide is for you.

The size or diameter of the knitting needles defines the measure of your knitting. However, beyond this, they are around in different widths, which determines the size of the project you can try with the needles.

Here are the five basic types of knitting needles that you should know:

  • Straight Needles
  • Circular Needles
  • Double-Pointed Needles
  • Interchangeable Needles
  • Cable Needles

What’s Your Point?

Regardless of what knitting needle type you use, the needle points make a huge difference. When working with stitches, particularly with beautiful yarn, sharp point needles are a perfect choice. On the other hand, the rounded points are ideal for thick wool and safer for the children.

Sometimes you need a particular type of knitting needles, while sometimes it’s just what you choose. Check out the different needles and know the best for your needs.

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Straight Needles

When talking about knitting needles, the first thing that comes up to most people is the straight needles. These are available in sets of two, with at one end the point and the other end is the knob. If you want to collect the different types of needles, you can start with this set. They are also handy and usable.

Dimensions and Materials

This type of needle has a standard size of 9 – 14 inches long, but then, you can buy shorter or longer types.

The most common materials used for straight needles are aluminum, steel, plastic, wood, and bamboo. Each has its benefits and disadvantages, but it can differ with every manufacturer.

Sometimes yarn feels excellent on needles that are from particular materials. When you see that your stitches aren’t clean and slipping off the knitting needles so quickly, or aren’t slipping with the needles enough, use another set with a different texture.

Where to Use Straight Needles?

Since they must keep all the stitches, it’s perfect for smaller designs that are flat. This includes scarves, washcloths, afghan squares, and even sweaters that you weave in pieces.

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Circular Needles

Use circular needles when creating an excellent knitting design. This needle type has a bendable cord that links them, so it looks like a one long knitting needle. These are available in stores, which means that the ends and the string are perpetually joined, or you can create them with exchangeable pieces.

Dimensions and Materials

The size of this needle varies from 16 – 48 inches long as well as is available in tinier or lengthier dimensions. They also vary in the width of the cord.

Like other knitting needles, the most common resources used for the needle part are steel, plastic, aluminum, bamboo, and wood.

Although coated steel and nylon are the popular types for the cord, they also vary. Circular needles sometimes have a mind or keep their shape. This makes it awkward to use the needle as it has its own mind. To prevent this, buy circular needles that are memory-free.

Where to Use Straight Needles?

The best use of this the needle is for designs in the circle, such as hats, sweaters, cowls, as well as socks when applying the magic loop technique.

Also, you can use these needles for flatter designs. All you do is knit in and out and moving the work from one side to the other. This is particularly useful with more significant projects like blankets and cloaks which don’t fit with straight needles.

Double-Pointed Needles

Referred to as DPNs, Double-Pointed Needles is another way of weaving on small designs in the circle. These are the shorter versions of straight needles with points at each end and come in groups of 4 – 6 knitting needles.

Some of the DPNs have either a flexible or bend portion in the center part. They can be purchased in sets of three as the curve is for the lesser needles to transfer your weaving around.

Dimensions and Materials

These double-pointed needles come in sizes of 5 -8 inches long. Shorter DPNs are best for smaller works like little socks. Meanwhile, longer needles are ideal for tube-like shaped designs such as hats.

Double-Pointed Needles have the same materials as the other weaving needles.

Where to Use Straight Needles?

In most instances, you will see Double-Pointed Needles in sock knitting projects. However, they are for knitting gloves, mittens, and hats (or the top part of a hat with circular needles designs). These knitting needles are also great for weaving sweater sleeves or even small toys. Although using double-pointed needles to knit takes time to practice and master, it will be worthy of the effort as you choose small designs weaves in the circle.

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Interchangeable Needles

Interchangeable needles are the perfect option for knitters who want the adaptability of circular needles in different sizes and the opportunity to use them in numerous ways. They have a stable tip and a bendable cord-like circular needle, yet the pieces set apart, allowing you to change the needle size and yarn lengths. Also, you can attach the needles to yarns and connect caps at the edges to use like straight needles.

This is available as individual pieces or sets. Most attach with a little screw-on connecting portion, but some knitters use other techniques, and each kind only comes together with its parts.

Buying a set of interchangeable needles gives the full advantage of getting the complete pieces you need, but this can cost you a lot of money if you’re growing your knitting collection little by little or need a small variety of sizes, what a better option is purchasing the pieces separately.

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Cable Needles

Cable needles are the type of knitting needles that are short, unusually shaped double-pointed needle, or sometimes round, hook-like needle. This is perfect for holding stitches when designing knitted cables.

Although it’s still possible to weave cables without a cable needle (by either using a Double-Pointed Needles or something comparable), this is a convenient tool for having active stitches secured while transferring them around.

Dimensions and Materials

These knitting needles are a couple of inches long and are available in lesser lengths due to they can only keep a few sew for just a little while. When picking the needle width, use the one that is a similar size or tinier than the size of the standard needles for the work.

Cable needles come in plastic, metal, wood, bamboo, and even glass. Since this is a unique tool, why not you choose a design that is beautiful and interesting?

The Takeaway

It’s like unbelievable how things as tiny and delicate as knitting needles have the gift to fashion such a range of incredible designs and from a single cord of yarn!