Question: Which is the best crochet hook….?
Answer: Any of them..!!
There are so many different types of crochet hooks, the “best one” is really subjective and completely up to you. Some people love the “in-line” style hooks like Susan Bates, whilst others wouldn’t start a project without their trusty “Clover” hook. If you’re interested in the difference between “inline” and “tapered” hooks, see here for more info.
A few months ago, I went to the “Knitting and Stitching” show at Kensington Olympia and was lucky enough to find a stall which had a number of different hooks to try out. I was certain from all of the hype on the internet that the Clover hooks would be great and work a treat for me. Actually, I wasn’t convinced….Let me be clear, I’m not saying that Clover hooks are bad, they are genuinely loved by lots and lots of people, they just didn’t feel right for me.
I think that the best hook depends on three main things
How you hold your hook
There are two main types of grip that people use…either the pencil grip:
Or Knife Grip..
How you hold your yarn
The second thing that influences which hook is right for you is the way that you hold the yarn. I was taught to crochet by my Aunt, she holds her yarn like this…
This way makes sense to me, the fore-finger and thumb control the work and you don’t have to do much “swinging” to get the yarn onto the hook, the movements in your hook-hand are small.
Unfortunately, after trying this way for some time, I found that my forefinger wouldn’t behave and an old knitting injury, knuckle soreness started to creep back in due to the repeated small lifts of the middle finger to get it onto the hook.
So I switched to hold it this way…
I think this is a more traditional way that people are taught. This means that the yarn-holding hand moves less, however to compensate, I find that my hook hand has to do much more twisting and moving to get the yarn on the hook.
I’m sure there are lots more ways to hold the yarn too and there is no right way, just the way that works best for you!
How you “move” when you Crochet
Thirdly, it depends a lot on how you actually “move” when crocheting.
Personally I hold my hook using a “pencil” grip, but I also tend to “twizzle” my hook around as I pick up the yarn then pull it through. See below…..my thumb is on top to pick up then underneath to draw through…
That means that a handle which isn’t fairly cylindrical makes the movement jerky and uncomfortably. Other people hold their hook in a much more stable way, meaning that an ergonomic handle would work well.
So, step 1 for me was to find a hook which has a handle which is mostly round….There are lots to choose from, I found these ones…from left to right they are:
Susan Bates, Furls Odessy, Addi Swing, Bamboo, cheap metal hook (unbranded), Prym
As you can see, they vary in length and width, the Furls is the longest at c.17cm long and Susan Bates coming in the shortest at c.14cm long. The length doesn’t matter to me personally, as I use a pencil grip. If you were using a knife grip, this may be more important to you as the end of the hook may not fit so nicely in your hand if it wasn’t the right length.
Width is important to me as I’ve found that crocheting for a long period of time with a thin hook makes my and feel like it is cramping up. Furls is again the widest at just over 1.5cm wide at the widest point. Susan Bates and the bamboo hooks are the narrowest at around 0.5cm wide (although this will obviously change for these types of hooks for larger hook sizes, these are 5mm hooks).
I tried out the Addi Swing for a bit, but to be honest, the hard plasticy-ness of the handle put me off, it didn’t feel as “special” as some of the other hooks. I set out to find a hook that had a softer feeling handle but which still allowed me to “swing” my hook.
I tried (from left to right)…Fusion, Clover Amour, Drops Circus
The Clover is the longest at c.14cm long and the Drops Circus is the shortest at c.13cm long. Width-wise, they don’t differ much, the Fusion is slightly larger at just over 1cm and the Clover is the smallest at just under 1cm. The width doesn’t change much in the different hook-sizes either.
So after all this, I found the best hook for me to be the Fusion hooks, great news….as they are also by far the cheapest hook. They feel very similar to the Clover hook, but are more rounded so they work better for me! If you want to try them out, I found them on Amazon.
Just in case its helpful, I’ve measured the hooks I’ve referred to above (using an old ruler, so please don’t complain if not 100% accurate to the nearest millimetre, I’ve done my best!!). I’ve measured at the widest part of the handle (as some of them taper) and I’ve also measured the width from the front and the side so that you can see which are round.
Hope this helps!