Crochet Hook Sizes Make the Difference

Different crochet hook sizes

If you have been crocheting for any amount of time then you have likely asked yourself the question of “Do crochet hook sizes really make a difference?”   The answer is yes.  Size does matter.

In this article I take a close look at the importance of having the correct hook sizes, how to select the correct size, and I provide a handy reference chart for crochet hook sizes depending on the yarn or thread you are using.

Crochet hooks are made from aluminum, steel, plastic and wood.  Their size is identified by letters or numbers, with the higher the letter or number, the larger the hook.  More often than not, the size hook you will use will be dependent on the type of crochet yarn that you are using.  The thicker the yarn, the larger the hook and vice versa.

Many times, crochet artists won’t use a pattern and will choose to ‘just go with the flow’ to see what they will create (and I have to agree that this is sometimes the best work I have completed!) When that happens, choosing the correct crochet hook size becomes a key process.  Too small and you may find yourself hours into a project and realize that the yarn is becoming unworkable because it is too tight.  Too big and you could find yourself with a blanket that is too loose or a scarf that is full of holes (and not suitable to be worn in public!)

Crochet yarn

Crochet yarn comes in different weights, everything from super fine to super bulky yarn.  Choosing the crochet hook size is dependent on the yarn weight and the yarn weight is dependent on the project.  Baby blankets are made with a super fine yarn so that they are soft, afghans often use a medium worsted weight,  and totes use a bulky heavy yarn.   The smaller the hook used means the thinner the yarn used.

Typically, super bulky yarns require a 7mm hook or larger while regular worsted yarn uses 5mm sized hooks.  Choosing your hook and yarn should always be the second decision.  The first needs to be, “what am I making?”  Once you know what you want to make, move on to “how do I want it to feel?”  The feeling you want (soft, sturdy, etc) will help determine the yarn, which in turn will help determine the hook size.

Recommended Yarn to Hook Chart

Sock / Baby / Fingering Sport / Baby Light Worsted / DK Worsted Weight Bulky / Chunky
2.00 – 3.50mm 3.50 – 4.00mm 4.00 – 4.50mm 5.00 – 6.00mm 7.50mm →

Sometimes using yarn just isn’t an option.  For more delicate projects, using crochet thread is the answer and opens up even more possibilities of crochet hook size options.  The principal is choosing the correct hook size is the same as using yarn; the smaller the hook, the thinner the thread.

Crochet Hook Sizes for Thread

Steel hooks with tiny heads are used when you will be working with crocheting thread.  Like yarn, thread has degrees of thickness and that thickness will help you determine the correct size hook you will need to use.

Steel crochet hooks range in size from 00 to 14 and crochet thread thickness ranges from size 3 to size 100, with 100 being the thinnest of the thread.  Beginners should start with something in the middle; working with the thinnest thread on the smallest hook takes practice and nimble fingers, a learned skill. 

Steel Thread Hook Sizes

U.S. ENG. METRIC
00 - 2.70
0 00 2.50
1 3/0 2.25
2 2/0 2.20
3 1/0 2.10
4 1 2.00
5 1 1/2 1.90
6 2 1.80
7 2 1/2 1.65
8 3 1.50
9 4 1.25
10 5 1.15
11 5 1/2 1.10
12 6 1.00
13 6 ½ .85
14 7 .75
16 - .60

Once you have been crocheting for a while, you will find that your collection of hooks has also grown.  Before you know it, you’ll have a crochet hook size for every project imaginable!

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