My go-to needle sets for any knitting project

The most common question I get from other knitters is about my favorite set of needles. I have 3 sets that are my go-to needle sets for any knitting project. If you only plan to invest in one set, think about what you are going to be knitting the most often. Is it hats? Sweaters? Blankets? The type of projects you knit will determine which set you want.

Unlike crochet hooks, there are so many factors that go into having the right needles for your project. If you plan to make a beanie with circular needles, the tips and cord can’t be too long. If you’re knitting a sweater, you will need longer cords, and may prefer longer tips (I don’t). If you’re using a light and airy yarn, you’ll probably want to opt for wood over metal. If you are going to knit a pair of socks, you’ll need to decide if you’re going to knit them with double pointed needles, magic loop, or tiny circulars. The list of options feels like it never ends and can be very confusing! I am finally in a place where I feel like I have a needle and cord for anything I decide to make, which means I have A LOT of knitting needles!

The 3 sets I’m showing you in this post are the ones I use most often, however, and I think will be a great starting place for your first interchangeable set.

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Knitter’s Pride Ginger Deluxe Special Interchangeable Set

This needle set is the first interchangeable set I bought for myself at the end of 2019. I have used it almost daily since then and a lot of knitting friends have purchased and love it as well. Knitter’s Pride has two Ginger sets, the regular set with a blue case and the special set with the maroon case. I chose the special set because it has short tips and short cords. It is perfect for knitting beanies but I have knitted many sweaters with this set as well. For an adult size sweater you will need to buy a longer cord to hold all the stitches of the body. If you only plan to make adult sweaters, the blue set will accomodate your needs, but since I make beanies and toddler sweaters, the maroon set is ideal for me.

This set comes with 13 sizes of needle tips from size US 3 (3.25mm) to US 17 (12.0mm), and 4 cords (2 of 16″ & 2 of 20”). The needles come in a beautiful, sturdy case. It has a pocket with 8 end caps, 4 cord keys, and 20 stitch markers inside. The case can be folded into a stand and has magnets for holding a paper pattern, as well as a pen that matches the needles.

You can find it on Amazon here or possibly find it at a local yarn store in your area!

Knitter’s Pride Mindful Collection Warmth Set

Knitter’s Pride came out with a Mindful Collection about a year ago and sent me one of the interchangeable sets. I have had the Warmth set for about a year and I now use it the most because I really like metal needles. This set is a bit pricey but it comes with a lot. You get 13 sizes of needle tips from size US 2.5 (3mm) to US 15 (10mm), 3 Swivel Cords (360 degree rotational): 1 cord each of 16″, 19″ & 22″ and 3 Fixed Cords: 1 cord each of 16″, 19″ & 22″. It also comes with 6 End Caps, 4 Cord Keys, 1 pair of Cord Connectors, 1 Needle Gauge, 2 Darning Needles, 10 Locking Stitch Markers, 10 Split Stitch Markers, and 30 Round Stitch Markers. The needles are stored in a round, fabric case and all the accessories fit into a canvas pouch. The set is beautiful but my favorite part is that each needle has a different word engraved on it to help you practice mindfulness while knitting.

One complaint is that the needles are a bit sharp and pointy, but I got used to this pretty quickly and I find that it’s actually helpful when knitting raglan increases. Another complaint is that the join on the swivel cords is not very smooth when working with certain yarn so I usually prefer to use the fixed cords.

You can find this set on Amazon here or possibly at your local yarn store.

ChiaoGoo Shorties

Have you ever wanted to use circular needles for socks or sleeves but they’re way to big? ChiaoGoo makes two sets of short tip needles that have changed my life and make knitting these things so much faster! They have two different sets – the red mini set and the blue small set. The mini set is sizes US 0-3 and the small set is sizes US 4-8. Each set comes with two lengths of needle tips, 2″ and 3″, and 3 cables/cords of different lengths. You’ll be able to make circular needles in sizes 9″ to 14″ which means these would be great for baby hats or other circular items that are a little too small for 16″ circulars.

The sets also come with cable connectors, tightening keys, a needle gauge, stitch markers, and end stoppers all put together in a lovely compact fabric case with zippers. I have both sets and use them both equally! If you mostly use light/thin yarn, get the red set. If you use DK and up, get the blue set. If you use a mix of both, I recommend getting both sets! You won’t regret it.

You can purchase them both here together on Amazon or alone if you search for “ChiaoGoo Shorties.” It’s possible that your local yarn store may have them as well.

Can I mix and match all my sets?

Possibly, but not always. I can mix and match my Knitter’s Pride cords with needles from other sets and I have noticed that KnitPicks cords and needles also fit together with Knitter’s Pride. ChiaoGoo makes their cords and needles differently and cannot be mixed with other brands.

Why are interchangeable sets so expensive?

Interchangeable needle sets have a bit of a shocking price tag, and it’s an investment up front. However, if you look at how much fixed needles cost and add up how much it would be to buy all the sizes and cord lengths you need, an interchangeable set actually saves you money. Plus they come in a nice storage case and usually have extra accessories.

I hope you found this post helpful! If you have any questions at all, please leave a comment and I’ll answer ASAP!

xo, kalley

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