The right knitting needles can make your knitting project go smoothly and swiftly. You can easily tackle some of the most complicated blanket patterns with a great pair of knitting needles! Good quality needles are important – but you need to choose the right size needles as well!
When knitting a blanket, you have to use the right size needle. Too big a needle and the blanket will be too loose, and too thin a needle and your blanket could end up tiny if you follow a pattern without adjusting it first!
What size knitting needles do you need for a blanket? The knitting needle size you need for a blanket will depend on the pattern and type of yarn you are using. For large blankets, you may prefer larger, circular wooden needles. For smaller blankets, you can use smaller, straight metal needles. Your stitch size can also impact which size you choose.
Read on to learn what size knitting needles you will need to knit a gorgeous blanket!
Choosing A Knitting Needle Size
When using a knitting pattern, it usually comes with the size of needle to use. This is usually a recommendation, and you can use a different size, but it is a good idea to stick to the recommended size, or one up or down from it.
If you already know your stitches run a little loose or tight, you can opt for a needle size down or up. For loose stitches, consider a size down. For tight, consider a size up. If you don’t know, however, go with the recommended size.
You also need to take the type of yarn you are using into consideration when choosing needle size. The different sized yarns all work well with specific needles. You cannot use thick needles and thin yarn! (Well, not easily.)
Here is a summary of the sizes of knitting needles you need for different types of blankets, and the yarn you should use as well:
|Yarn Type||Blanket Type||Needle Size (mm)||US Size|
|Lace||Intricate, lightweight blankets||1.25mm – 3.00mm||0-3|
|Fingering||Thin baby blankets||2.0mm – 3.5mm||0-4|
|Sports||Lighter weight knit blanket||3.25mm||3-4|
|Light Worsted||Medium weight blanket – versatile||3.5mm – 4.5mm||4-7|
|Worsted||Medium weight blanket, easy knitting||3.75mm – 4.5mm||5-8|
|Chunky||Thicker blankets||5.5mm – 8.0mm||9-11|
|Bulky||Thicker, loose blanket||8.0mm and above||11+|
|Jumbo||Thick and chunky, very loose-knit blanket||12.75mm and above||17+|
The above guide is a recommendation on the type of yarn you should pair with certain needles, to achieve a specific type of knitted blanket. (We also have a guide for crochet hooks for blankets, in case you’re not sure what your next project will be.)
You can make a few adjustments here and there, but be careful of changing needle sizes too much, as the blanket could turn out too loose or too tight!
The 3 Best Knitting Needles For Blankets
Below are the best knitting needles to use for blankets, as well as the type of blanket you would be able to knit using these needles.
|1.||Red Lace Circular Needles||Chunky blanket (size 10)|
|2.||Boye Aluminum Knitting Needles||Medium-thick blanket (size 7)|
|3.||Knitters Pride Circular Needles||Very chunky/loose blanket (size 50)|
For more information on each of these great blanket-sized needles, keep reading!
1. ChiaoGoo Red Lace Circular Stainless Steel Knitting Needle (Size 10)
The ChiaoGoo Red Lace Circular Needles are ideal to use for thicker blankets. The needles allow you to use chunky yarn to create a warm, yet fairly quick to knit up blanket. They are a size 10, or 6.5mm needle.
Made from high-grade stainless steel, the needles glide easily through your stitches, not snagging at the yarn to cause friction as you knit.
The needles come with a flexible, multi-strand nylon-coated steel cable, which allows your yarn to slide easily from one needle to the other. The size is permanently etched on the side of each needle for easy identification, and the needles and cable wrap up easily for storage.
This is so handy to have when knitting a chunky blanket, as the cable takes the weight off of your hands and wrists, as you only need to hold a few stitches at a time.
Your hands will thank you for using the smooth stainless steel needles, and the cable which will support the bulk of the weight of your project.
Plus, this needle comes in multiple sizes. So if your pattern calls for a smaller yarn, you can always opt for a size 7 or this size 8.
2. Boye Aluminum Knitting Needles Size 7
The Boye Aluminum Knitting Needle set contains two size 7 knitting needles. This is such a handy size needle to keep at home, as it can be used for so many different projects.
When it comes to blankets, you are able to use these size 7 knitting needles to make a medium-thick blanket, using light worsted or worsted yarn. You can use these needles to make a very versatile blanket, which can be used in different seasons.
Baby pink in color, the knitting needles have concave points which help to prevent against dropped stitches. The needles are extra-long at 14 inches, allowing you to hold enough stitches comfortably while knitting blankets.
These will be a very valued pair of knitting needles in your kit! You will be able to make a wide range of medium-weight blankets using worsted or a light worsted yarn and these size 7/4.5mm needles.
If you’re a beginner, you can rest assured knowing 7 is a classic needle size that you will be glad to have around for years. It’s also perfect for standard scarves, slippers, hats, and even tighter sweaters.
3. Knitters Pride Fixed Circular Needles Size 50/25mm
These are the knitting needles to use if you want to make the chunkiest, loose-knit blanket around! The size 50/25mm needles are large and easy to use, with a cable between the two to hold most of the weight of the work.
Made from natural birch, the needles are lightweight and warm in the hand, which allows you to knit for longer before your hand becomes fatigued.
This works well with you being able to sit the weight of the blanket on the cables, which allow you to easily move the stitches back and forth.
With these needles, you will be able to quickly knit up a blanket using a jumbo yarn and have a thick, but comfortable blanket ready in next to no time.
You might not be able to use these needles for much else, but the blanket will be worth it! Plus, if you fall in love with these needles, you can always opt for a few different sizes. You can find them in as small as a size 6. So you have plenty of options.
Is It Better To Use Circular Needles For Blankets?
When using thicker yarns or larger projects, it is a good idea to use circular needles. These help to carry most of the weight of the project, which could be quite a bit when you are knitting up a chunky, or jumbo blanket.
You need to ensure that the needles you choose are smooth, and will not snag or cause friction when working with the yarn. This goes such a long way in ensuring the whole knitting process is made much more enjoyable!
If you are knitting a blanket using a thinner or lighter yarn, you can get away with using straight needles, but make sure that the needles are extra-long, so they can hold the numerous stitches that blankets require.
Most importantly, you need to make sure that the needle size matches the yarn you are using, as well as the pattern you are following.
Of course, knitting large projects with straight needles has been done traditionally in some cultures, so it is possible. You just may want to practice with a medium sized project before you try knitting a full size blanket first!
Which Needles Should I Use As A Beginner?
If you are a beginner knitter and are wanting to knit a blanket, you might be a bit confused as to what size needles to use.
For beginners, the best size needles to use would typically be between a size 6 (4.5mm) and a size 8 (5mm). You can use worsted weight yarn for this size, which is an easy size yarn to use and is fairly forgivable. It’s not too thick and not too thin.
You will be able to make quite a wide range of blankets and knits with these size needles, so they are incredibly handy to keep in your kit, and you will definitely make use of them often.
Start off with this size, find a great pattern to use, and get knitting. You can always move up or down in size if you need to for your next project, or if you realize you tend to knit slightly larger or smaller stitches. Everyone’s different!
What Size Knitting Needles Should I Use For a Baby Blanket?
Traditionally, baby blankets are made with thin to medium yarn – and medium-sized knitting needles. You probably wouldn’t want to go below a size 5 (3.75 mm)or and more likely would opt for size 6 to 8 (4 to 5 mm), depending on whether you tend to knit large or small stitches.
Baby blankets should have fairly tight stitches to keep little ones warm and cozy. Plus, since babies tend to grab at what’s around them, you don’t want roomy stitches or holes (like lace) in your blanket. Little baby fingers could poke through and get stuck!
To knit up a baby blanket fairly easily and quickly, you could consider a larger sized needle, like a size 11 (8.00mm) knitting needles. If you do this, however, you should be extra careful to choose a stitch or pattern of stitches that won’t leave holes for baby fingers to poke through.
You may be able to use two strands of worsted weight yarn to knit up the baby blanket faster with larger needles. This will minimize any large holes. This will also allow it to be soft, but still thick enough to keep a baby warm.
Are Bamboo Knitting Needles Better Than Metal?
Many knitters do prefer to use bamboo needles, especially if they battle with cramps and fatigue while knitting. Bamboo needles are warm and smooth in the hand, and don’t have the cold feel and clicking noise that metal needles do.
Stitches also do not slip off of bamboo needles as easily as they do off of metal needles, which makes working with them much easier! Bamboo circular needles offer the most comfort when knitting larger projects.
Do You Use Less Yarn With Bigger Needles?
When using bigger needles, you will use proportionately less yarn. You will be making bigger stitches and rows, which means using less yarn not needing to make so many small stitches. Small needles require you to make lots of small stitches, which does end up using more yarn in the end.
However, you will still use a lot of yarn either way if you are making a full blanket. It may not make enough of a difference when you’re purchasing your yarn, but you can always give it a shot.
The Right Size Needles For Knitting Blankets
It is so important to choose the right size needles when knitting a blanket. You need to make sure that the size needles you use match the yarn you have chosen, and the pattern you are following.
Using the wrong size needles will mean that your blanket does not measure up properly in the end, or you’ll simply have to knit a lot more or add a border to get the right size. It might be too loose or too tight. Use the above chart to find the right size needles and yarn for your next blanket!