It’s all about the hook.

I have been crocheting for many years.  Over those years I have collected many crochet hooks and have lost more than I can count. Anyhoo, I am always looking for the perfect hook.   You can find Boye and Susan Bates in many craft chain stores.  You can find bamboo and other wooden ones at yarn stores.  You can even find light up hooks.  I can’t figure out why someone would want one of those.  Then there is the popular Clover Soft Touch hook.  What ever hook you find that is your perfect one, you still have to check the gauge of the piece you want to crochet, even if you have size H hook in different brands. 

Let’s take a look at the parts of the hook first.

The “shaft”  is the area of the hook that determines the size of the hook.  That is where the loop is sized when crocheting. 

 Parts of a hook

The “throat” is the thread guide down to the head. 

Below is a picture of four Size H hooks, made by different companies, that I have.

 size H hooks

The top one is Aero, the second is Boye, the third is ?? (says JMRA on the thumb rest) and the fourth is a wooden one made by Turn of the Century.

Below you can see an up close photo of the head area. Notice the difference in the shapes of the hook.  You can see that the Boye is nicked. It will catch the yarn, so I won’t use it. I’ll give it to my daughter to practice with. 😀

Hook heads

My favorite all time hook is the one that says JMRA on the thumb rest. It is smooth, the yarn glides right over it, and it is long enough for my hand. I have been trying to find this hook for many years and can’t. I thought the Aero brand was the same thing, but if you’ll look you can see that the Aero is much shorther. It actually sits, just inside my hand and bothers me a lot. LOL I’ll still use it, because it is as smooth as the JMRA one.

Two different brands

 

My next favorite (so far) is the Boye. I think it is because I learned to crochet with it. I totally hate Susan Bates. I can never seem to catch the yarn with it.   Susan Bates is loved by many crocheters out there; I’m just not one of them.

Now the wooden one; I just purchsed. I had been looking at it for a long, long time and decided to buy one. They are expensive, but everyone says they are the best hooks to use. After trying it, I don’t care for it. It is not as smooth at the JMRA, and it is considerably longer. It came in a lovely round black cylinder package. Neither the package nor the hook has the size on it. I hope my memory stays with me on this one.  However; it is gorgeous. 🙂

Now we’ll get back to the gauge. Even though you may have many hooks the same size (say size H), they are not the same. Below you will see an edging I did on my daughter’s shawl. The edging is done in a 9 dc (double crochet) shell. The shell on the right was done using the JMRA size H hook, while the shell on the left was done with the new wooden crochet hook. That’s a big difference when you need the right gauge throughout the pattern.

Shell stitch using 9 dc

 If you crochet, what is your favorite hook?

PS.  If anyone finds a place that sells the JMRA hooks, please let me know. 😀

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13 responses to “It’s all about the hook.

  1. I love the color of that yarn. Your work always looks so nice.
    So, people like me who don’t gauge it is important to use the same hook not just the same size. I think I noticed that with my h hooks one crocheted up and looked like I was using a g hook .
    I did not know the names of the parts of my hooks. I prefer metal hooks so far but I don’t have a brand favorite.

  2. You are so talented! Are you going to give us a fashion show with all the ways to wear a shawl? It looks to be very cute.

    My grandmas could crochet the most beautiful dollies. I have several of them. My Grandma B. made 8 of them for me. Found out later that my uncle had to read each stitch to her as she could no longer read print. They were precious to me before that but now ever so much.

    I wasn’t going to show the shawl. It is just a very simple, cheaply made shawl. I had done one ecru and one in white for my other daughters. They are to wear them at church. The youngest wanted red. (she gets that from me). I’ll get a picture of soon of the shawls.

    Kaths last blog post..Vacation…….

  3. Oh Applie, what kind of waffle iron do you have?

    Funny question for this post. LOL It is a cheap one. I don’t remember the name of it, but it has big red handles. We call them the Rumor Weeds. I have a picture of them on here somewhere. Wouldn’t mind having the big cast iron ones.

    MichielleRoses last blog post..Yes, I’m here

  4. JMRAs are made in Germany and I’ll keep an eye out for one; although I don’t frequent the LYSs around here much. What size do you want?

    Good picture of the size difference.

    I like Susan Bates aluminum hooks and I am really liking my Clover hooks.

    I bought a bamboo-handled Bates that I don’t like at all. It is way to long for me, but you might like it for that reason.

    Sheris last blog post..Vitamins for the Soul

  5. That is a great post about crochet!! 🙂

    I’m the opposite of you, I hate the Boy and love the Bates style of hooks. My favorite hooks are wooden ones that a good friend was selling for another friend. They are made from ordinary wooden dowls from the lumber store. The are wonderful because they only hold the heat from my hand and soak up my skins natural oils to keep them in great shape.

    My prefered size of hook to use would be an ‘H’ or ‘I’ for worsted weight, ‘G’and smaller are only OK when using smaller yarns and in the metal as I’ve had the wodden ‘G’s break on me – not good for one’s master piece. 😛

    I’ve made my daughter a stole, no shawl, and she wears it to church from time to time though she loves to snitch mine when I wear it 🙄 I’d love to see the ones you made your girls, most likely not as heavy as the one I did but then it’s colder up here. 😉

    Elaines last blog post..My Emoticon is…..

  6. I like the long wooden crochet hooks best because I have large hands. Thanks for pointing out that you should check gauge with each needle – lots of folks forget to do that! It’s the same with knitting needles. 🙂

    Melanies last blog post..Tomatoes and Garlic in Oil, Oh My!

  7. Neat post! I love to crochet but have never tackled any large projects. I discovered knitting and have all but abandoned my crochet projects. I’m part of a knitting circle and they keep me honest with my projects…. otherwise I might never complete any of them.

    Blessings!
    Lacy

    Razor Family Farmss last blog post..Simple Gal to City Gal? Ha! Part 1

  8. I crochet, not a lot, but I have made a lot of finished pieces, mostly from thread, but I don’t have a favorite hook. I have the chain store hooks, the Boye kind, I think. =)

    Speaking of thread, I saw a ball of blue variegated thread at a new Michaels store recently. They had only one. I guess that color goes fast.

    It must go fast, because I remember we were looking for that before. I never did find any. I like crocheting with thread also. 🙂

  9. My Mom is an avid crotcheter and she collects all kins of hooks. Neat post.

    Tippers last blog post..Appalachian Clouds

  10. I am lucky enough to have a JMRA hook size G but it also says 4.5 instead of the US G which is 4.25 This would account for the different gauges. I absolutely LOVE this hook and have also searched for more. Please post if you find a source.

  11. I too LOVE the JMRA hooks! I have searched and searched for a place to buy more hooks. Please let me know if you find a supplier. Thank you!

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