Wondering what do you need to start to crochet? I got you, let’s look at the essential crochet tools for beginners.
Crocheting is a fun and affordable hobby that is great for your mental health. Be warned though, once you call yourself a crocheter you will become addicted very quickly!
What Tools Do I Need To Start Crocheting?
- Crochet Hook
- Yarn Needle
- Stitch Markers
- Measuring Tape
When we’re thinking about starting to crochet we don’t need many tools and they really aren’t expensive.
If you’ve tried kntting in the past you probably have most of them already in your kit!
If not then most crochet tools for beginners can easily be found in craft stores or online, be sure to check out some of my favourites in my Amazon shop.
The two main things that you’re going to need are some yarn and a hook, without these you aren’t going to get far so let’s look at these in detail first.
1. Crochet Hook
Let’s start at the very beginning, do you need 1 or 2 needles for crochet? Crocheting is done with one hook (unlike knitting which uses two needles).
Hooks come in all shapes, sizes and materials ranging from plastic through bamboo, wood and aluminium.
Hook sizes can be referred to as a letter (the US system uses this) or a circumference in mm (this is known as the metric system).
Did you know that there are over 30 different sizes for crochet hooks?
Yikes! But don’t worry there’s an easy way to find out which is best for you as a beginner crocheter.
Now I know you hear that size isn’t important in many conversations, but in terms of crochet it definitely is!!
You see, yarn comes in a range of thicknesses, from the most delicate fingering weight yarns through to my faves, the super chunky yarns.
You can always tell which size yarn you have by looking at the label. It will give you a number from 1-6 where 1 is the finest fingering weight and 6 is the super chunky yarns.
The yarn label will also tell you which hook size is recommended for the yarn you are hoping to work with.
It’s important to remember though that this is only a recommendation, sometimes you may want a looser more drapey project and prefer to work with a larger hook, or if you’re like me you may crochet quite tightly, so I often size up to a slightly larger hook than is recommended on the yarn label.
Alternatively, if you are wanting to crochet something quite dense like a dishcloth for instance then a smaller hook may work better for that project.
You certainly don’t have to have a full set of hooks to start crocheting. If you already have your yarn then check the label for the recommended hook size.
This chart might help you when you are trying to work out which yarn you have and which size hooks are best to start with:
Crochet Hook Conversion Chart
So now you know what size hook to look for the other thing is what material you might want to use.
The material you choose is really down to what you prefer to work with, although as you become more proficient you might like to build a collection of hooks in different materials depending on the yarn you are working with.
The hook I would recommend for beginners is the bamboo hook, mainly because of the fibres of the bamboo mean that it grips on to the yarn slightly, there’s less slip on the hook so you’re less likely to drop your hook!
I would also recommend that you start with some chunky yarn (size 6) and you start with a chunky hook (10-12mm) simply because it helps you to be able to see how your stitches work up.
If you’re just learning how to create the basic stitches, using a chunky yarn also helps you to work out different parts of the stitch, you can see the stitches very easily and it can help you to see where to insert your hook which can be a bit difficult if you’re using a finer yarn.
Next up in terms of price are acrylic hooks, these ones are kind of an intermediary hook, some people prefer these to the wood or the bamboo just because they work slightly faster but not quite as fast as the aluminium.
I started my crochet journey with a basic set of aluminium hooks of different sizes which range from teeny tiny 0.5 millimetre hooks that are used for working lace through to one of my most often used 6mm size.
You’ll find with aluminium that the hook does slip quite easily through the yarn so when you’re just learning to work with your crochet it can be a little bit slippery and you can lose your loops quite easily.
Eventually as you become more proficient and work more quickly you may prefer to move to an aluminium hook because it does slip so much easier and you can work more faster .
Whichever material you decide to begin crocheting with they’re very cheap so it’s worth just having a little play around and see what you prefer.
Now the best bit!! Yummy yummy yarn, I can’t get enough of the stuff :o)
So, if we’re thinking of the best crochet tools for beginners what type of yarn is best for a crochet?
As we said before yarn comes in a range of sizes (or diameters) from 1-6 and your label will tell you which you have – or which you should buy if you already have some hooks to play with.
Now, you may already have your hooks and you know what size yarn you’ll need but what material should you choose?
Yarns come in such a HUGE range of materials, blends, textures, levels of durability and of course, price!
Just a quick search online and you’ll find cottons, linens, bamboo, animal wool and man made fibres not to mention the infinite number of blends out there, so which yarn is best for a beginner crocheter?
As a newbie crocheter don’t go overboard with the fluffy, bobbly textured yarns until you’re more confident with your stitching.
Most of the time you would choose a yarn depending on the project you will be working on so, for example you may want a cotton or bamboo yarn for dishcloths but you would want a softer easily washable acrylic for baby blankets.
The best yarn for beginner crocheters is a soft, smooth yarn that is not too slippery, so often man made fibres work well and are less expensive to replace if you get knotted up!
Any scissors will do the job of snipping your yarn when you get ot the end of your project BUT a small pair of craft scissors with a sharp end are perfect……and who can resist having a delicate little pair in their craft bag?
Or is it just me that smiles whenever I get them out? They’re soooo pretty!
Crochet Tools For Beginners
Are you more of a visual learner?
4. Tapestry Needle
One of the other things that you might need eventually when you’ve finished your first project is a tapestry needle so you can weave in your ends.
Yarn needles have a big eye so it’s easy to thread even the thickest yarn through them, most are blunt so they won’t split your yarn when you’re stitching in your ends.
They are usually made of plastic or aluminium and they really are pennies, you don’t have to spend a fortune to get anything special.
You may need a stitch marker when you start to work on other projects and these can be handy for marking the edge of your work as well.
If you’re not sure where your first stitch is going to be when you turn your work I would recommend just marking your your first stitch with a stitch marker so when you get to the end of the row you know where to insert your hook.
Locking stitch markers are the best for crochet as you want to insert the marker through your stitch to hold it. If you can’t get your hands on stitch markers and you’re itching to get going then a safety pin works just as well.
They’re also invalauable for inserting through your stitch if you have to put your project down for a while to deal with children/pets/couriers delivering more yarn as it stops all of your hard your work from unravelling.
6. Measuring Tape/Ruler
Once you’re a pro at your stitches and have moved on to working on your first projects you might see that the pattern mentions gauge.
Gauge is really important to make sure your finished project is the size you had hoped it would be when you’ve spent hours creating it…..no one likes a scarf that would fit a Barbie doll (except Barbie of course!)
A measuring tape will help you to ensure you are meeting gauge (essentially this means that your stitches are the same size as the designers, usually measured in 4″/10cm square).
Personally I prefer a soft fabric tape as it can be manipulated into whatever shape your project is to give you an accurate measurement.
7. Extra Tools Once You’re Addicted To Crochet
Ok, so you’ve got your mid size hooks, your yarn stash is taking over the spare room and you keep finding stitch holders in between the sofa cushions, welcome to my world!!
Once you’ve got your essential crochet tools for beginners and mastered the basics there are a few other bits and bobs that might make your crochet time easier or more enjoyable
- Yarn Project Bag
- Blocking Mats
- Row Counter
- Swatch Ruler
- Yarn Bowl
I have to admit I’m still working my way through this list – a yarn bowl is on my Christmas list, but a girl can dream can’t she?
Now then, shall we get on with some crochet?
Where To Next?
If you’re ready to start your crochet journey or you just want to pick up some new skills then head over to Crochet College so you can become a cro-pro in no time
Want to practice your stitches and give some simple patterns a go?
Try these free crochet patterns for beginners with step by step tutorials and pictures