How to choose the right knitting needles for your project

The thread you use will have a recommended needle size written on the label. Always knit a tension square, but if your measurements don’t match, try again with larger or smaller needles.

Here’s how to make sure you choose the right knitting needles for your project.

How to choose the right size knitting needles

Generally, these sizes of knitting needles are best used with the following yarn weights.

2.5-35mm – 2ply – 4ply yarn

3.5-4.5 mm – DK thread / 8 ply

5-6mm – Aran yarn / worsted yarn

7mm and bugger – big yarn

knitting needles


Best Knitting Needles: Types of Knitting Needles


Straight knitting needles are best for beginners. These come in pairs and allow you to create large, flat pieces of fabric. However, they can be bulky and you often lift all the weight of your knitting as you work, which can be uncomfortable.


Composed of two “points” of needles connected by a twist, the circulars allow you to knit in the round or in rows, back and forth between the points. Used in this way, like ordinary needles, the cable takes the weight of the fabric.

To choose the best circular knitting needle, check the circumference of the project you are knitting and choose a needle length shorter than that.



Circular needles come in different sizes and lengths. Interchangeable needles let you mix and match needle tips with cables so you don’t have to buy one of each thickness and length. You can buy sets as well as individual pieces.


Double tip

Sold in sets of four or five, they allow you to knit in the round. It may seem scary to use so many needles, but you’re only “knitting” with two – the rest are just holding stitches.



how to choose knitting needles


Use huge pairs like this to know with chunky yarns, or even a finer yarn for a lacy look. Oversized needles allow for super-fast projects! Also great fun for young knitters who love instant gratification.



Used for knitting cables, these twisted needles are handy for holding a small number of stitches you don’t want to knit yet (the fold keeps the stitches from falling out). You can use a stitch holder or a spare needle instead.


extra long

Useful (as you would expect) for very large projects, such as chunky sweaters, cushions and throws, especially if you don’t like using circular needles or like to tuck a needle under your arm.


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