8 Best Knitting Needles 2021: Top Brands and Sets

Best Knitting Needles
Image by Gojak / Canva Photos

Knitting is an excellent hobby for clearing your mind and relaxing after a long day. Plus, you end up with something hand-made when you’re project is complete! Unfortunately, figuring out which knitting needles are the best knitting needles for you to use can be a monumental task; there are literally thousands upon thousands of different kinds out there.

Fortunately, we went ahead and did all that leg work for you. In this article, we’re going to look at the top knitting needles on the market, starting with the Knit Picks interchangeable knitting needle set.

Our Top Picks

Here’s a quick overview of what we found:

  • Best Overall: Knit Picks Interchangeable Set. This versatile kit comes with everything you need to get started on any knitting project your heart desires! This includes long rounded tips, a smooth body, even connection points for circular knitting, and included end caps for straight knitting.
  • Best Eco-Friendly: Lantern Moon Knitting Needles. These exquisite hardwood needles are ethically sourced and hand-polished to a smooth, silky finish with the perfect points for slipping under yarn edges.
  • Best Budget: Vancens Circular Bamboo Knitting Needles. Each pair of the 18 circulars in this set is made of quality bamboo material that’s easy to grip and smooth enough for any yarn to slide over. It features brightly-colored cording for easy size differentiation.
  • Best for Beginners: Clover Takumi Single-Point Needles. These inexpensive needles are perfect for beginners. Classic bamboo provides an ideal texture combination for a good grip and smooth yarn movement.
  • Best Interchangeable: Symfonie Rose Interchangeable Set. Elegant and versatile, these interchangeable circulars come with multiple cables, connectors, end caps, and a beautiful box with built-in storage.
  • Best Double-Pointed: RELIAN Double-Pointed Bamboo Needles. This 75-piece set comes with 15 needle sizes. Constructed of highest-quality bamboo, RELIANs are soft and lightweight for easier use than metal needles. They feature long tapered ends and a smooth finish that yarn will all but glide right over.
  • Best for Baby Blankets: HiyaHiya Sharp Interchangeable Needles Set. This interchangeable set has 50 possible needle combinations. The multiple cable lengths included suit any kind of yarn, be it finer lace or thick & chunky fluff. With stainless-steel tips and smooth joins, knitting is a breeze, whether you’re making a baby blanket or an afghan throw.
  • Best Luxury: ChiaoGoo 7400-C Twist Tip. This all-inclusive set comes with surgical-grade stainless-steel needles in plenty of sizes, anti-kink cords, and a variety of accessories designed to make any knitting project a breeze — all in a gorgeous fabric organizer with storage pockets galore!

1. Knit Picks Interchangeable Set

The best knitting needles overall

Knit Picks Needles

Brand: Knit Picks / Number of Needles: 9 Pairs / Material: Wood / Includes Accessories? Yes / Price: 💰💰💰

Knit Picks’ interchangeable needle set comes with 9 pairs of needles made of the finest quality wood designed to stand up to the tension needed for a tight-knit. Each set includes 4 cables for circular knitting as well as 8 end caps to convert the circular needles into straights. The cable connection points and the wooden needles themselves are all shiny and smooth, meaning they won’t catch on your yarn as you work. With long, rounded tips and 6 beautiful color options, this knitting set is perfect for beginners and experts alike!

  • All-inclusive kit at a stellar price without sacrificing quality
  • Designed by knitters, for knitters, and work great with most yarn types
  • Super versatile kit comes with everything you need for almost any knitting project

  • Some reviewers had issues with cables becoming unscrewed during use
  • One reviewer noted that the cable hole was drilled incorrectly on one of their needles. Thankfully their set was quickly replaced by friendly customer service.

2. Lantern Moon Knitting Needles

The best eco-friendly knitting needles

Lantern Moon Needles

Brand: Lantern Moon / Number of Needles: 1 Pair / Material: Wood / Includes Accessories? No / Price: 💰💰

Lantern Moon is a small knitting needle manufacturer that made straight, double-point, and fixed and interchangeable circular needles. Their Featherlight series is constructed entirely of sustainably-harvested FSC (Forest Stewardship Council)-certified wood, making them the industry’s first sustainable knitting needles. Each finely-crafted pair is made by hand from luxury ebony wood, rosewood, or the more affordable palmwood. The wood polishes to a silky shine that’s perfect for any kind of yarn.

Lantern Moon offered living wages to both their employees in their Portland, Oregon center and their Vietnam harvesters, and only partnered with suppliers certified through independent sustainable forest management programs. Unfortunately, they ended production in 2018, but their needles are still widely available new from commercial retailers.

  • Perfectly pointed ends (not too sharp, not too dull) that easily slip under yarn edges
  • Silky finish that’s not too slippery with unique striations that are “absolutely stunning”
  • Rotating cable connections prevent kinks and twists and make it easy to switch cables in the middle of a project
  • A little pricey because Lantern Moon is no longer in production
  • The thinner needles are more fragile and may snap mid-project

3. Vancens Circular Bamboo Knitting Needles

The best knitting needles on a budget

Vancens Needles

Brand: Vancens / Number of Needles: 18 Pairs / Material: Bamboo / Includes Accessories? Yes / Price: 💰

Though a less expensive material, these bamboo knitting needles don’t sacrifice quality in the name of a good deal. The smooth texture is easy to grip while still allowing yarn to slide along the length easily. The rounded point design slips easily beneath the edges of your yarn without catching any singular fibers. The connection points between cord and needle are smooth for easy transitions.

This set includes:

  • 18 pairs of different sized circulars with brightly-colored cords for easy identification
  • stitch markers
  • plastic lacing needles
  • a measuring tape
  • a pair of scissors
  • and a crochet hook
  • Color-coding makes it easy to identify size when circulars are stored together
  • Varied accessories include everything you need for any kind of knitting project
  • Smooth needles are easy to grip and won’t catch on yarn, with long, tapered points that easily slide beneath yarn edges

  • Size markings on the bamboo needles fade pretty quickly with use
  • The joins aren’t uniform across all pairs, and some reviewers noted one or two bumpy connections that made it hard for yarn to pass over

4. Clover Takumi Single-Point Needles

The best knitting needles for beginners

Clover Takumi Needles

Brand: Clover / Number of Needles: 1 Pair / Material: Bamboo / Includes Accessories? No / Price: 💰

Bamboo needles are the best knitting needles to start with because they’re a cheaper material. You can try out multiple sizes and styles of needles while still keeping your wallet happy. The texture of these bamboo needles offers a reliable grip with smooth, rounded tip points for easy sliding under yarn edges. Choose from a range of sizes to suit your favorite yarn.

  • Easier to grip and less expensive than metal or resin needles
  • The 9-inch length is great for most hand sizes and more ergonomic than shorter options
  • Smooth finish for yarn to slide easily over the ends, but not so slippery as to lose stitches

  • One reviewer noted that the ends aren’t slippery enough for those who knit extremely tightly
  • Bamboo isn’t as durable as other material choices, and the thinner needle options may snap with too much pressure

5. Symfonie Rose Interchangeable Set

The best interchangeable knitting needles

Symfonie Rose Needles

Brand: Knitter’s Pride / Number of Needles: 8 Pairs / Material: Birchwood / Includes Accessories? Yes / Price: 💰💰💰

The Symfonie Rose set of interchangeable circular knitting needles from Knitter’s Pride offers elegant, versatile needles in an equally elegant package, complete with much-needed accessories. Each pair of needles is a different size and made of a lightweight-yet-durable laminate birchwood base designed to stand up to the pressure needed for a tight-knit. The gorgeous rosewood finish contrasts with the copper-toned end caps and connectors.

Each set includes cords, end caps, cord keys, cord connectors, and a cord case, making this the ultimate addition to your knitter’s arsenal.

  • Comes in a lovely box with built-in storage space to keep cables and connectors
  • Rosewood finish with copper-toned end caps and connectors for an attractive contrast
  • Flexible cables with the interchangeable design will fit on any of the nine pairs; they are easily screwed on and tightened with the key for a gapless connection

  • The size information on each needle may wear off after long-term use
  • The thinner needles are a little delicate and may break if used with too much pressure

6. RELIAN Double-Pointed Bamboo Knitting Needles

The best double-pointed knitting needles

RELIAN Needles

Brand: RELIAN / Number of Needles: 75 / Material: Bamboo / Includes Accessories? Yes / Price: 💰💰

As we’ve said, bamboo is an excellent material for knitting needles because it is lightweight, durable, and has a great texture, all with a great price tag. This set of RELIAN double-pointed needles includes 15 different sizes. All of the needles come with long rounded points designed to easily slip under yarn edges — their smooth long bodies perfect for knitting in the round. The lightweight, soft bamboo material is much easier to work with than metal double-points. This 75-piece set is ideal for newbies and old pros alike!

  • Yarn slides easily over long rounded tips and smooth bamboo body
  • 75-piece set is an excellent value for the cost, all without sacrificing quality
  • Full-size needles are lightweight and softer to work with than metal needles, making them great for knitting in the round

  • The smaller sizes can be challenging to use for those with larger hands
  • One reviewer noted the finish wasn’t consistent across all needles, but with a little sanding, the kit is still well worth the low cost

7. HiyaHiya Sharp Interchangeable Needles Set

The best knitting needles for baby blankets

HiyaHiya Sharp Needles Set

Brand: HiyaHiya / Number of Needles: 13 Pairs / Material: Stainless Steel / Includes Accessories? Yes / Price: 💰💰💰💰💰

Whether you’re looking to make a baby blanket or an adult blanket, this interchangeable circular set is perfect! Each of the 13 needle pairs is compatible with four different-length cables, perfect for everything from the finest lace to thicker afghans. The cables swivel, making knitting a breeze by preventing curling and kinking. Stitches move quickly over the stainless-steel tips, and the smooth, level joins for snag-free work.

  • Over 50 different needle combinations in total
  • Yarn glides smoothly over stainless-steel needles and even joins
  • Multiple cable lengths for use with fine laces and thick, fluffy yarns alike

Stainless steel needles may be too slippery for beginner knitters
Some reviewers noted that, since there are so many components, it can take a bit to get set up for a new project

8. ChiaoGoo 7400-C Twist Tip

The best luxury knitting needles

ChiaoGoo Needles

Brand: ChiaoGoo / Number of Needles: 13 Pairs / Material: Stainless Steel / Includes Accessories? Yes / Price: 💰💰💰💰💰

If money is no object, then this complete set of interchangeable circulars is the ultimate in versatile luxury. Surgical-grade stainless steel constructs all 13 pairs of needles. They are compatible with both kinds of included memory-free cords, which won’t kink or get stuck in certain positions. The connection points are smooth to prevent any yarn snags. Every needle has a lifeline hole for completely effortless lifelines.

The set also includes:

  • cable connectors
  • end stoppers
  • T-shaped tightening keys
  • stitch markers
  • a needle gauge
  • and a beautiful fabric case
  • Flexible cords don’t kink and are easy to work with
  • High-quality stainless steel is elegant and built to last
  • Includes gorgeous back and white fabric organizer with plenty of space for any and all project accessories

  • Smooth needles can be a bit too slippery for some users
  • Some reviewers didn’t like the sound the metal needles make against each other when working

What to Look For When Buying Knitting Needles

What to Look for in Knitting Needles - Best Knitting Needles
Image by Canva Photos

All these sets might sound pretty good, but you still need to choose which knitting needles set is right for you. Here are some definitions you’ll want to keep in mind as you consider your options:

  • Straights: refers to straight knitting needles, which are tapered at one end with a stopper at the other to prevent lost stitches, and are great for beginners.
  • Circulars: refers to circular knitting needles, which connect to each other via a cable. These cables can be interchangeable: meaning they detach and can be traded out, or fixed: meaning they are permanently attached and can’t swap out. The best circular knitting needles won’t kink or be prone to twist.
  • Double-Pointed: needles with points at both ends that can be attached to cables or used for magic loop knitting.
  • Cables: connect two needles for knitting in the round.
  • Connectors: attach your cables to your needles.
  • Connections/Joins: the point where the cable meets the needle.
  • End Stoppers: attach to one end of your knitting needles to turn them into basic straights and prevent stitches from falling off the bottom.
  • Lifeline Holes: small holes in knitting needles that make it easier to thread a lifeline through a row of stitches (lifelines make your project easier to save in the event of a dropped stitch or other mess-up)
  • Knitting in the Round: a fancy way of referring to knitting a tube, rather than something flat
  • Magic Loop: knitting in the round by using longer-than-usual circular needles rather than double-pointed needles

Whether you’re new to the game or you’ve been knitting for years, we hope this list helps you find your perfect set of knitting needles!

Our Process

For this guide on knitting needles, our team spent 3 hours researching the most popular options from over 20 brands and manufacturers big and small. We then read about one hundred twenty-five user reviews (both positive and negative) to discover what shoppers thought about each needle. After comparing this data, we narrowed our list down to the top 7 knitting needles on the market. You can count on this research to guide you to a mindful purchasing decision.

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