Wooden or Metal?

I have a strong preference for wooden knitting needles. It seems however I see alot of people with metal as well. Is this a personal preference or is there some benefit I have missed?


The missed benefit is speed. I knit twice as fast with my addi turbos than I do with any other needle type.

The downside is lost stitches if you aren’t careful (the same slippiness that helps with speeds also helps with losing stitches). I quickly abandoned my metal straights because I just found I couldn’t look away lest my stitches went flying off the needles. This is less of a problem if you knit tight. Some people prefer them anyway. It’s all preference. :slight_smile:

i mainly use straight needles and i prefer wood. they are always relatively warm to the touch unlike metal needles that can get quite hot or cold. i’ve been taking very warm, lengthy showers this winter and the humidity actually condenses on my metal needles. o_O

i also like wood because they’re so natural. i feel very zen-like when i use them with natural fibers. plus, they look great. :happydance:

i would agree with the speed thing though. when knitting in the round wood is NOT your friend. my yarn constantly gets stuck at the join and the texture of the wood needles makes it quite challenging to push the loops past it. i need to replace my wood circulars with addi turbos. :doh:

I tried both before i bought my Denises’ which I love.
I prefer bamboo over metal…
Metal is cold and hard to the touch, even after knitting for quite a while.
My biggest pet peeve was that since it so hard it does not “give” with the yarn like bamboo or resin does.
My other big pet peeve is that the metal tip on the straights bruises my wrists and makes them hurt more.
Therefore I choose resin as my 1st choice and bamboo as 2nd

Although as mentioned the yarn “slides” more easily over them


I have managed to accumulate all the circs I think! [color=red]Denise, KnitPicksOptions, Lantern Moons, Crystal [/color][color=red]Palace Bamboos, Clover Bamboos, Addis of all sizes and lengths…and some of the old timey Susan Bates 100% plastic/resins.[/color]
I don’t use straights AT ALL anymore…but keep them for sentimental reasons. Kinda like when one of our hens stops laying…we still keep her on out of appreciation for her years of service.

Latest purchase was 2 pair of the Lantern Moon rosewood and one pair Lantern Moon ebony…wanted to see what all the hype was about. They are definitely a nice needle…but I have had to move my knitting from the rosewoods to KPOs from time to time. As said in a post just before mine…the woods and bamboos can ‘stick’ to your knitting and pose a major slowup. Aggravating. The price of the 3 pair of Lantern Moons could buy an entire set of KPO’s plus extras! Kinda spendy. I don’t know what I was thinking. Well, I obviously wasn’t. Shoulda started with one pair.

But, as it is, [color=red]I love 'em all [/color]for one thing or another.
My Recommendation for New Knitters: [color=blue]Denise[/color] and graduate to the KPO set eventually. You will need and use them all!

The first needles I ever got were metal, and they’re all I’ve ever used. I’m sure non-metal ones are lovely as well, but I get kind of freaked out by the thought of bent needles… not sure why, but I knit pretty tight, so I don’t ever have a problem with stitches falling off (it’s only happened a few times, and always with when there is only one stitch on the needles, and I’m trying to do something like make tea while holding the needles) and I can’t bend them!

I find wooden needles better when I knit in the round because they don’t slip off so easily. But with straight needles I prefer metal ones because they are more slippery and you can knit faster with them. Another point is that if you are a tight knitter, you would usually prefer metal needles because that way it’s easier to slip off your ultra-tight stitches. But for loose knitters they usually prefer wooden.

Hope that helps! :slight_smile:


yeah… I have a pair of the extra long Clover bamboo needles. One of the needles actually did bend! :wall: Well a slight curve … tomato… tomato… ( that doesnt look right in text…oh well). I may try a pair of the metal needles. My dr who scarf could probably go a bit quicker.

metal here–I started with bamboo but moved on to addis and became addicted.

I prefer metal…I just like the way cool metal feels in your fingers, and then warms up as you work. I also like how smooth it is…I have a set of bamboos, and they are nice…but I like my metal ones.


I prefer the Options for regular knitting because they’re so quick and bamboo for DPN’s. I have a hard enough time with 50 needles trying to stab me as it is, I don’t need to worry about my stitches slipping off too.

I find it interesting how you progress from what the LYS suggests to what you find yourself more comfortable with as you get more familiar with knitting.

I started out with the long, metal ones from HL. One of my early projects found me at a nice LYS where they had me buy bamboo needles. While I liked the bamboo, the yarn just did not slide very easily. I think my yarn and tension had something to do with it.

I’ve since purchased Options. I LOVE them. I love the slick feel, and they are so pretty when I pull them out to knit in public! They are perfect for my tension!!


it is personal preference, and there are more choices than metal or wood.

(and even if you limit your self to metal or wood, there are still lots of choices!)

wood needles come in"
(bamboo–not really a wood, but…)

and metal needles come in
nickel plated brass
painted/teflon coated

not to mention the old polished steel ones with metal ‘cables’ (not nylon cords)

i also own nylon needles (1 peice from end to end!)

there are also plastic (several knits) and casien needles
(i don’t like most plastic needles… i have tried several)
(i just blogged about my collection of needle)–some are over 45 years old!

yeah i went through jo annes today and saw plastic ones as well. Didn’t mean to leave them out of this… I just never noticed them hehe. :hug:

I prefer my KnitPicks Options and Addi Turbos to any other needle, and they are all I use. They are just so slippery, and the cables are really flexible, and the joins are really smooth.

i love addis too, and if wishes were horses, we would all ride, and if money grew on trees, i would spend it by the bushel!

but i have every size (and them some!) in boye/susan bates, (some 40 years old and still in good shape (see my blog!) and can’t afford to replace every needle i own.

i knit PDQ on my boyes–(years of practice does help!)