Choosing the right needle size or crochet hook size is critical to how you project will turn out. I often will change the size recommended by a specific pattern to make a tighter fabric or adjust the fabric for a specific yarn. Here is an example project where I adapted a pattern designed for chunky alpaca to work with a lighter weight alpaca yarn.
The diameter of your knitting needle or crochet hook determines the size of the resulting knitted/crocheted stitches. Needles and hooks usually include both US needle sizes and metric sized (mm). However, sometimes patterns will only specify one or the other, that is were this conversion chart comes in handy. In some cases, the needle size may rub off the handle on the needle or crochet hook or it may be too small to easily see. For these reasons, we recommend keeping a needle gauge in your knitting/crochet bag.
|Metric/Millimeters (mm)||US Needle Sizes||US Crochet Hook Sizes|
If you've ever struggled with the decrease section when knitting a hat on 16-inch circular needles, you need to learn the Magic Loop method of knitting. Similarly, if you hate how sweater sleeves twist up while knitting in the round, you need to learn the magic loop technique.
This technique works on just about any size project, so you can use it exclusively for smaller projects in the round, such as hats, sleeves, mittens, cowls, socks, and so on.
Kelley just finished knitting the Shift Cowl by Andrea Mowry, and she's fallen in love with mosaic knitting.
While it sounds complicated or fiddly—mosaics are made up of little pieces of glass, after all—mosaic knitting is super easy. Seriously, you end up with a beautiful colorwork project, but you're only using one color in each row.