Choosing your first Tunisian Crochet Hook

Photo of Chiaogoo TSPIN Interchangeable Crochet Hooks in their case. The case is a black background with red fabric, printed with small, black, floral designs.
Various Tunisian crochet hooks are displayed. On the left is the Clover interchangeable set - light wooden hooks in a tan case with purple edging. On the right is the ChiaoGoo TSPIN set - light wooden hooks in a black case with red accents. On the table lie various tunisian crochet hooks - long straight wooden ones, one interchangeable head, a double ended one, and a metal hook with a flexible cable attached.
Clover Interchangeable tunisian crochet hook set (left), Chiaogoo TSPIN interchangeable tunisian crochet hook set (right) and assorted other tunisian crochet hooks – straight, double ended, and Knitter’s Pride Interchangeable.

If you’re at this post i’m guessing by now a pretty nifty Tunisian Crochet design (maybe even one of mine) has caught your eye! But, you’ve been told you need a special hook that will likely need to be ordered online.

Which hook is the best? Which size do you buy? Should it be straight, double ended, or with a flexible cord?

Don’t worry, i’ve got you! In this post i’ll cover a few of the basic details you need to know about choosing your first Tunisian Crochet hook as well as my personal favorites (which are NOT affiliate links – just my opinions)!

Types of Tunisian Crochet Hooks

A long, hand carved tunisian crochet hook by Roux Studios. The hook is painted to mimic a chalkboard - a black base coat of paint with intricate floral designs painted in white.
Hand carved tunisian crochet hook by Roux Studios
http://www.handcarvedhooks.com

A traditional Tunisian crochet hook is a long straight version of a standard crochet hook. This type of hook you likely have seen your Grandmother using to do what she calls “afghan crochet” or “afghan stitch.”

What do you use it for?
It’s excellent for making wide pieces of fabric such as blanket panels, scarves, or even an infinity scarf worked flat. Think of it as the straight knitting needles of tunisian crochet.

Where can I find one?
1) A craft store. You can find a traditional tunisian crochet hook in just about any craft store, but you won’t have many choices for sizes. Likely you will have the option for a US J (6.0mm) or US H (5.0mm) and that’s about it. (Cost: about $6)
2) Furls crochet hooks just started carrying Tunisian crochet hooks. They have plenty of sizes, and lovely wood color choices. (Cost: about $25)
3) An artisan hand-carved hook. These have a wide price range depending on the intricacy of the work. The one in the photo above was $90 because it’s an absolute work of art!

Interchangeable crochet hooks & flexible hooks

Chiaogoo TSPIN interchangeable crochet hook set. 11 crochet hook heads sit in a black case with red floral fabric accents.
Chiaogoo T-SPIN interchangeable crochet hook set

You’ve probably seen interchangeable hook sets around if you’re active on social media. Hook sets like these are popular on Facebook, Instagram, Ravelry, and YouTube.
They feature a solid crochet hook (hook length varies depending on the brand) with a flexible cable that screws into the base of the hook.

What are they used for?
Interchangeable and flexible hooks are excellent for making very long pieces, or shaped pieces. For example, if you want to crochet a triangular shawl like my Dayspring Shawl

A white woman with brown hair stands in front of a weathered barn door. The door is half gray, weathered wood, half painted deep red. She holds a shawl that is striped yellow and speckled red in front of her, looking proud of her work.
Dayspring Shawl by Ruth Brasch

A flexible crochet hook allows you to work around the point of the triangle, from one edge to the other on a single flexible crochet hook. It also allows you to hold a large number of stitches on the cable without the weight of a long straight hook, so the flexible hooks are a little more ergonomic and user friendly.

Where can you find them?
1) The set above is from Chiaogoo; it’s called T-Spin, and is about $135
2) Individual hooks and cables can be bought from WEBS (yarn.com). These are the Knitter’s Pride Ginger hooks, which you’ll hear more about slightly further down this page when I talk about my hook/brand preferences. These were the first hooks I tried, precisely because I could try them without buying a full set.
3) Clover/Takumi also has an interchangeable bamboo set that is very similar to the Chiaogoo set (more comparisons below). My set of these I found at Michael’s. They retail for about $75, but if you catch them when the store has a 40-50% off coupon, it makes the set much more affordable. That’s how and when I got my set.

Double Ended Hooks

A hand holds a double ended Clover, Takumi crochet hook size 6.0mm (USA Size J hook).
Clover Takumi double ended bamboo hook for Tunisian Crochet. Size US J (6.0 mm)

What are they used for?
Double ended hooks are used for working Tunisian Crochet in the round. It’s a super fun technique that I plan to write more about soon!

Where can they be found?
1) You can typically find these in craft stores like Michael’s and Joann’s. The last time I looked in one, I saw about 4 sizes in the store (US H-J/4.0-6.0mm) and a few more online.
2) Online. The google is your friend!

But Ruth, what’s the difference between sets, and which do YOU use?

I’m so glad you asked!

Three tunisian crochet hooks are held up to compare with one another. The left hook has a larger head and shallower throat, the middle and right hooks are almost identical except the right-most hook is pointier.
Comparison of three Tunisian Crochet Hooks
From L-R: Knitter’s Pride Ginger, Chiaogoo T-Spin, Clover/Takumi

Check out the photo above – You can see a hook from each of the three interchangeable sets I mentioned. Here are some of the biggest differences i’ve noticed while using them:

Knitter’s Pride Ginger ($129)
* 12 Hooks, Sizes 3.5-12mm
* Gloss/Sealant on hook for a smoother feel
* Heaviest of the three
* Largest head of the three
* Shallowest throat of the three
* Point on end of head to help with catching yarn
* Medium length
* Comes with standard Knitter’s pride cables – these are the least flexible of the three.
* Has a key for tightening the join between cable and hook
* Storage: Flip cover, snap shut case (plus a matching pen)

Chiaogoo T-Spin ($135):
* 11 hooks size E-N (3.5-10mm)
* No gloss or sealant, but very smooth feel in hand
* Light weight bamboo
* Throat is the same as the Clover set, but with a rounder angle
* Slightly larger and rounder head than the Clover set, much smaller head than the Knitter’s Pride set
* Comes with the standard red Chiaogoo cable with a metal wire inside it – This helps reduce cable kinking.
* Has a key for tightening the join between cable and hook
* Storage: Zip up travel case

Clover Bamboo Interchangeable Set ($179):
* 9 hooks size E-L (3.5mm-8mm)
* No gloss or sealant, but very smooth feel in hand
* Light weight bamboo
* Throat is the same as the Chiaogoo set, but has the sharpest angle to it
* Smallest head of the three, with a medium point – less pointy than Knitter’s Pride, more pointy than Chiaogoo.
* Comes with a clear, VERY light weight cable
* No key for tightening the join between cable and hook
* Storage: a roll up fabric case with a tie


Yes, Ruth, but which one?
If you have the budget for it, I’d go for the T-Spin set. While the T-Spin and Clover sets are very similar, the Chiaogoo set comes with another hook, a tightening key, and a zipping case that’s super compact for traveling and storage.

For a budget friendly option, the Clovers are an excellent choice. They’re very similar to the Chiaogoo set, and if you have a coupon for the store, can be VERY budget friendly.

The Knitter’s Pride set is my third choice. I enjoyed them for my first hooks, and they’re excellent if you want to buy a single hook without needing to buy the full set.

I hope this was a helpful article for you! I’d love to hear which hooks you end up choosing and how you like them!

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