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Knitting Supplies

By: Roxanne McDonald - Updated: 7 Jul 2013 | comments*Discuss
 
Knitting Supplies Knitting Supply

Maybe you’ve learned the ins and outs of knitting supplies by trial and error. Maybe you instinctively worked a knitting project without the technical mumbo jumbo and know which knitting needles to use with which yarn to make what kind of cable, gauge, or size.

But with the support of the many knitting books, blogs, and knitting supply online sites dedicated to knitters, you might just prefer to consult an outside source for some interesting, specific knitting supply details.

Knitting Needles

Knitting needles come in several sizes, types, and materials, and are chosen in accordance with yarn weight and pattern gauge desired.

Needle Size

The size, or diameter, of knitting needles will determine the gauge—the number of stitches and rows per inch in a knitted piece:

  • The size, or diameter, is different brand by brand
  • Metric sizes—The millimetre size equals the needle diameter.
Needle Type/Style

Likewise, the needle type or style will determine the garment or piece knitted:

  • Single point needles range in length from 9 to 14 inches, to accommodate stitched rows. Single point knitting needles are typically used for flat knitting
  • Circular needles, ranging in cable lengths from 12 to 60 inches, are used for balance (to maintain an evenly distributed weight of knitted project—to reduce the stress on wrist joints); for more flexibility; and comfort. Circular knitting needles are also only used for the stockinette stitch (knit stitches only), so knitting is faster.
  • Double-point needles range in length from 4 to 18 inches and are most often used for circular knitting—for smaller pieces such as kids’ wear, mittens, socks, toys, sleeves, collars, and hats, as well as sweaters, table linens, and doilies.
  • Flex needles—like cable needles but with an end stopper—are used in lieu of straight needles for knitting flat pieces. Flex knitting needles are more compact, more wrist-friendly, and becoming more popular as needles which also take the burden of weight off the wrists and keep it on the knitter’s lap.
Needle Material

The material of knitting needles determines ease and comfort for the knitter:

  • Bamboo needles are lighter than aluminium needles, are warmer to the touch, and are not as slippery.
  • Metal needles are heavier and make a lovely clicking sound when use in knitting.
  • Plastic needles are flexible and just as durable as metal ones.

Knitting Yarns

Most commercial yarns are plied—4-ply, 5-ply, 8-ply, 10-ply, 12-ply, and 14-ply the most common. The garment weight and size (or thickness) is determined by the number of plies, which make up a variety of thicknesses called weights—of super fine; fine; light; medium; bulky; and super bulky classes.

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Knitting Patterns

A number of stitch patterns are the resulting design of any number of knit (k) and purl (p) combinations. These patterns include everything from the basic stockinette to the more involved rice stitch to the elaborate seven sisters cable stitch.

In addition, patterns for specific garments (using one or more of the many such above-named stitches) are available as work charts. These patterns use a knitters language—a series of abbreviations that you can learn by checking out our Knitting Glossary, for starters.

While it appears there are so many knitting supplies to be collected that you will break your pocketbook, the knitting craft is actually quite affordable. Not accounting for the much-loved time and effort, a knitted piece will be much more affordable than a store-bought design, and will, because it is hand made with love and care, trump the purchased option every time!

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  • Wendy
    Re: Glossary of Knitting Terminology
    Hi i have a question,i am knitting a cardigan have got to 5th row and it says pattern 15,do i pattern 15 from 1st row cos it…
    8 August 2017
  • CraftExpert
    Re: Glossary of Knitting Terminology
    Kay - Your Question:Hi please can anyone help me I am making baby shawl the pattern states1st row knit working iNto back of…
    31 July 2017
  • Kay
    Re: Glossary of Knitting Terminology
    Hi please can anyone help me I am making baby shawl the pattern states 1st row knit working iNto back of stitches Yon,…
    28 July 2017
  • CraftExpert
    Re: Glossary of Knitting Terminology
    Trish - Your Question:What does ** mean at the beginning of a row when knitting?Our Response:The
    20 June 2017
  • Yashna
    Re: Sell Your Home Made Cards
    Hi, I m making handmade cards, paintings, bandarwal and other handmade crafts items now I want to sell them so suggest me....thank u....
    19 June 2017
  • Trish
    Re: Glossary of Knitting Terminology
    What does ** mean at the beginning of a row when knitting?
    18 June 2017
  • Sukla
    Re: Sell Your Home Made Cards
    I am from India. I made handmade cards and paintings and drawings I want to sell them..... please tell me some idea sell them...
    6 June 2017
  • Bobbie
    Re: Glossary of Knitting Terminology
    I'm knitting an elephant the pattern tells me to slip the last 4 stitches onto the right hand needle then the next row tells…
    1 June 2017
  • Mahi
    Re: Sell Your Home Made Cards
    Hi, I am making hand made card and wadding box I want to sell, them my cards how to start selling
    31 May 2017
  • CraftExpert
    Re: Glossary of Knitting Terminology
    Margie - Your Question:Hi I am trying to knit booties, I am stuck on the 2nd row which says : increase in next stitch, knit…
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