When I first started to learn to crochet many years ago I didn’t know there was a choice of crochet hook types to choose from. I just assumed there was only the metal type. Purely because my hooks that I had were handed down to me from my Nana and they were the metal type. I happily used these hooks for many years. I still have them in my crochet hook bag.
But today there is a lot more choice and a vast array to choose from. Metal, plastic, wood or bamboo. So which is the right hook to choose? Let me explain the different types and their qualities both good and bad. Hopefully this will help you when choosing your next hook.
Metal Crochet Hooks
The most common crochet hook types are the metal ones. I remember my Nanna using her metal crochet hooks when I was a child. In fact she handed her hooks down to me when I began to crochet.
The advantages of using a metal crochet hook is they are fairly economical to buy. So if you tend to lose or misplace your hooks it’s not the end of the world to replace them.
They usually have the hook size stamped into the shaft part of the hook. Meaning the hook size will not be worn away with use.
They are also very durable and will last you a long long time. They are also cool to the touch and lightweight.
The yarn glides easily over the hook for smooth stitches.
I love to use this Pony Crochet Hook Set as its got all the hook sizes you need, which you can purchase here.
One of the disadvantages of using a metal crochet hook is that they are quite rigid. Which can make your hands and fingers ache over time. With constant use you may also find that the skin on your predominant finger may become hardened and callous like.
Also because of the smooth metal finish they can be quite slippery making them difficult to handle for beginners.
They are not the most ergonomic hooks to use. So if you suffer from arthritis or dexterity problems then these hooks may cause pain with constant use.
Plastic Crochet Hooks
Plastic hooks are probably the most common type of hook.
They are lightweight and smooth to handle. They are relatively inexpensive to buy so replacing them is not an issue.
Also perfect if you are a beginner and just in the practice stage as they won’t cost you too much when buying the hook size you need. You could even buy a full crochet hook set at a reasonable price.
The size of the hook is usually stamped into the shaft of the hook for ease of reference.
If you need to refer to my tutorials for visual help on crochet for beginners you can find me here ….
I am not a great lover of the plastic hooks. Purely because they are of man-made material and don’t glide over the hook as smooth as the metal type.
I also find that when crocheting my hands can tend to sweat on the plastic. This can create that ‘squeaky feeling’, caused by the friction between the hook and the yarn.
Because they are made of plastic they can break easier than the metal ones. Although they are still quite durable they can easily be broken.
Wood Crochet Hooks
If money is not an option then wooden crochet hooks are the ones to choose. Especially these hand carved ornate ones.
There are lots of advantages for using wooden crochet hooks. They are usually hand carved with some fabulous ornate detailing on the shaft of the hook. Giving your crochet set a little touch of luxury and exquisite to look at. I have built my wooden collection up over a number of years and you can get some really good deals on Amazon here’s the link.
They usually have the hook size carved or stamped in to the shaft of the hook to. They can be made from a variety of different woods. Usually carved from rosewood, ebony, mango or cherry to name but a few.
They are warm to the touch because they are of a natural material. They are very comfortable to use making them ergonomic and ideal if you have dexterity problems. Because they are made from wood, they are usually very sturdy but with a little bit of flexibility in them.
The only disadvantage of using wooden crochet hooks usually is the price. If you are choosing handmade, hand carved hooks then they can be quite costly. This is due to the work involved in making them. Depending on how well the hooks are carved they can cost well in excess of £35.00. Making them a true investment.
Bamboo Crochet Hooks
Although bamboo crochet hooks have not been around as long as metal or plastic they have become increasingly popular.
Like wood they are a natural product and have very similar qualities to the wooden hooks.
Made from bamboo grown predominantly in the far east, they are made from a sustainable resource making them eco friendly. The bamboo is dried in the sun after harvesting which gives it that strength and durability. The bamboo is then split and made into hooks of various sizes.
They are usually polished to give them that lovely smooth finish and are very light to handle. This makes them very comfortable to use, being lighter to handle with less chance of hand fatigue. An added bonus is you can generally extend your crocheting time too!
They are also very strong even though they may appear delicate and can last a very long time. Chopsticks, cutting boards and cutlery to name but a few are made from bamboo. Making it a very resilient natural product.
Also because of their natural fibres they are not as slippery as metal hooks which can be a problem for new crocheters.
Again like wooden hooks they can be expensive depending on how well they are made. Usually handcrafted by artisans with a lot of workmanship involved, which can add to the cost. But if you are prepared to pay extra then they are well worth the expense.
The Best Of Both Worlds
To add to the problem of what type of crochet hook to choose you also have the choice of hooks made from two types of materials.
You can now have the added option of a bamboo or wooden handle with a metal hook. Or even comfort cushion grips on metal or plastic hooks. I like to use the cushion grip with metal hook and also the bamboo hooks. It all depends on what I am planning to crochet too.
New To Crochet?
If you are new to crochet I would recommend choosing a plastic or metal hook, purely down to costs. Whilst you are in the practice stage it is not imperative that you have a expensive designer hook to start with. Don’t forget to visit my tutorial section here for crochet advice.
Both plastic and metal hooks are quite cheap and readily available to buy online or in craft shops. Once you have mastered the basic stitches and feeling confident take on a crochet project then I would suggest you think about investing in comfort grip or bamboo hooks. Leaving the luxury hand carved wooden hooks as the ultimate purchase and investment.
You don’t want too much expense incurred initially, as after all you may find that crochet is not the hobby for you. At least you have not wasted a fortune buying expensive hooks never to use again.
I do hope that my post on crochet types and choosing what is best for you has enlightened you. There are so many various hook choices available and hopefully you feel more knowledgeable when choosing your next hook.