needle and hook guide, all crafts

This will only include the actual intended purpose of each tool, not opinion, and one is certainly free to choose what they like. But if you are experiencing problems, this may help you narrow down the options.
The question of “which hook or needle is the best?” comes up quite often, so I would like to give one thorough answer that can be bookmarked and linked later.
machine and hand-sewing sewing needles generally do not have options of different materials
tapestry, embroidery, cross-stitch, and yarn needles are usually metal, but plastic needles are available for yarns, and are safer for use by children or those with fine motor skill issues.
crochet hooks and knitting needles come in 3 basic categories of metal, wood, or plastic.
metals will have slight differences in weight and warmth in the hand. They tend to have less drag on the yarn allowing for more slip. Shiny metal will have more slip than brushed metal. The warmth from your hand will transfer easily to the working yarn, which will have an effect on any natural oils or coatings that may be on your yarn. This effect can range from an oily or moist feel to a pliable waxy or even sticky feeling, depending on the coating in your yarn. Metal can also be hard on hands that are prone to joint or tendon tenderness due to inflammatory conditions.
Plastic (including nylon and acrylic) These will have the most spring and bend for those tender hands, and are a safer option for children and those with motor skill issues. The plastic category can cause what is known as a squeak when used with some yarns, especially artificial fibers, and can become gummy feeling on a large project due to collecting a film of warmed coating from the yarn. Plastic will have more drag and can be easier to learn on because your yarn is less likely to slip out of your control.
Wood is the warmest feeling of the materials without transferring too much heat from your hands. Wood can be highly polished or slightly rough. You can get needles made from expensive hardwoods, but they will have less spring to them and may take years to develop a natural finish that will not require any extra care to maintain the smoothness. Bamboo is an inexpensive and renewable choice that remains naturally smooth and still has some give for those tender hands.
Pointy or blunt-
machine and hand sewing needles come in sharp or ball point. Sharp is for most woven fabrics, ball point is for most knit fabrics and designed to push the fibers out of the way instead of splitting them and will result in less runs or holes.
tapestry, embroidery, needlepoint, and cross-stitch needles follow the same blunt or sharp point rules. When you need to push fibers out of the way, you use blunt, when you need to penetrate tightly woven fabric, you use sharp point.
Knitting needles follow the same blunt or sharp points. Sharp points are for finer yarns or yarns with a tighter twist or where you need to perform lace or cables with fine details. Blunt points are for most jumbo, roving, and novelty yarns, or yarns with a loose ply that would all be prone to splitting and possibly ruining the yarn.
Crochet hooks come with a pointy or blunt head (the hook part on the end) This follows the same rule as the knitting needles. You should use a blunt or rounded head for jumbo, roving, novelty, or loosely plied yarns prone to splitting and sharp heads on tightly plied or small yarn that require more detail like lace or textures. If you have problems with splitting yarn, you may need to switch to a blunt head hook.

Crochet hook shafts-
in line or sloped- crochet hooks come with two types of shafts (or shanks) this is the handle part just below the head. A straight shaft allows for the loops of yarn to slip off faster, a sloped hook slows the process down a little by making your loop slightly smaller before it reaches the head. If you have tight tension and have a problem getting your hook back through your stitches, you may need a straight shaft, and if your stitches fall off too easily, you may need the slope. The little flat spot is a thumb rest. If you have issues with tender wrists, you can learn to use the thumb rest to twist your hook instead of twirling your wrist to complete stitches.
Knitting straights, double points, and circulars-
Straight needles come in many lengths and are meant for not working in the round. If you have issues with tender joints in your hands and wrists, a longer needle used in lever knitting can offer the most comfort in knitting because the long needle can be anchored in place , leaving hands free to perform less movements.
Double points and circulars are meant for working in the round, but can be used for row knitting. If you have tender joints or motor skill issues, the shorter circular needle can be harder to manipulate than a long double point needle.
Tunisian crochet hooks are a hybrid of a crochet hook and a knitting needle. They will follow the same guidelines as regular crochet hooks.


Thank you so much for this!

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Thank you very much for all this, Youre so helpful to everyone on here!
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That’s a lot of info-thanks for taking the time to share it with us.


Thank you