Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Question From Reader: Wooden Crochet Hooks?

Dear Dee, I've noticed that you are including wooden crochet hooks in your pictures.  Some of them have jewels. Are these the actual hooks you use everyday?  They're gorgeous!  Where are hooks like that sold?  Do they hold up well?

I'm delighted you noticed!  Usually I exclude the hook when I take pictures of my crochet work, but lately I've decided to add the actual hook I used -- not just because they're pretty, but because I want to have a reference in case I decide to duplicate the work at a later date. 

To answer your question, I do use wooden crochet hooks nearly all of the time.  The exceptions would be:

  • When I'm working with wire (wire is brutal on hooks, so use a metal one that you don't love!)
  • When I'm working with wet fiber (hemp works up so much easier when dampened)
  • When I'm working with thread (I'm still adding to my collection the wooden handle with steel hook inserts type)
  • When I'm working with plastic fibers (the thought of plastic rubbing on my hook - yeck!)
  • When I'm working large Tunisian projects (hint to my hubby: I could really use some Tunisian hooks made of wood...)
  • Unlike metal hooks, wooden hooks do not rob you of your natural body heat, rather they hold the warmth.  I also like my hooks without thumb rests.  This is so I can twist and jut the hook with my fingers resulting in less motion of the wrist, allowing me to crochet in comfort for greater lenghts of time.  Someday I'll video my hook holding technique, but not today.  Today, rather, I'll share a video I made last summer.

    I shot the video below when I was waiting for my children to get out of school one afternoon.  I sitting behind the wheel quietly crocheting when the urge to at least try videoing with my camera hit me.  So with the camera strap held by my teeth, I shot this video of myself crocheting very, very slowly.  I was working on a bag that would later be felted (it's since been felted but is now waiting for the final touches such as adding the strap, silk lining, and clasp.)  Considering how I was holding the camera, I think I did a pretty good job at keeping the camera still.  {{grins}}

    So where do I get my wooden hooks from?  I was surprised with one by www.Brainsbarn.com; I bought a few from www.lacis.com, and I bid on a lot from ebay!   I'll try to remember to note who hand-turned the hooks pictured in future posts.  A warning though: collecting hooks is VERY addictive!  :)

    ... oh, and do the hooks hold up well?  I've had several for 6-7 years, and they have thousands upon thousands of miles worth of fiber rubbings on them -- they're just as beautiful to look at and work with today as the day I first added them to my collection. 

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