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Ultimate Crochet Hook Review: hook anatomy

Welcome to day one of my Ultimate Crochet Hook Review! I’m so excited to be running this series on my blog. Do you know why? Because there are so many crochet hooks out there, it often feels impossible to choose the right one for you! So, this week, I’m going to talk about the nitty-gritty details about hook shape and design, how to identify your crocheting style, and help you pick the hook that’s right for you!

So, let’s get started! How well do you know your crochet hook? Before you can figure out which hook will work best for you, you’ve got to get to know the basic anatomy of the hook.

Here’s a diagram:

Hook terminology

  • Point: this is the part of the crochet hook that pokes into the stitch you’re crocheting into. The point can range from very pointy to rather dull (rounded). Sometimes called the ‘tip’.
  • Groove: The groove is the indentation that catches the yarn as you pull it through a stitch. Grooves can be either deep or shallow, although there’s no standard way to ‘measure’ the ‘groove depth’.
  • Throat: the throat is the part of the hook where the loop transitions from being caught in the groove to its resting place on the shaft. Throats can be either ‘inline’ or ‘tapered’. This is perhaps one of the most salient features of a hook, and the throat style is often described on the package.
  • Shaft: the shaft is the part of the hook that the loop rests on while you are crocheting. It is the part of the hook that determines the size of your stitches.
  • Thumb rest: this part is pretty self-explanatory! It’s an optional indentation that allows you to rest your thumb on the hook.
  • Handle: another self-explanatory part! The handle is the part of the hook that you’ll hold while crocheting. Handles are usually made from the same material as the rest of the hook, but some styles of hook feature ergonomic or comfort handles.

More hook differences

In addition to the points raised above (inline vs. tapered throat, pointy vs. rounded point, etc.), hooks can differ in many other ways. Hooks can be made in many different materials (metal and bamboo are 2 of the most common), of course, come in different sizes and those sizes can be printed on the hook in different ways (ranging from ‘not at all’ to ‘laser inscribed’).

What the heck does all that mean? Want to know what all of these differences mean to you and your quest for the perfect hook? You’ll have to come back for the rest of the series! (it’s way too much for one blog post!)


  1. mary SAYS...

    Hi Stacey

    I can’t wait for you to review the POINT part of your hook anatomy. I have found that the wood hook with the very sharp point works best for slip stitches. I had a really had time with slip stitches with the round metal point. Cant wait to hear how others deal with this.


  2. Sara SAYS...

    I found your reviews and information very helpful and informative – the best out there in fact. I live in the UK and we really don’t tend to make all the fuss about our tools and make so many complaints as people from the USA do. I think it is because we don’t really have much choice. Well, that is opening up a bit now but basically all crochet hooks are grey allumminium and all seemed the same and you just got on with it.

    Since reading on ravelry and also since knooking, I have become more interested. I don’t think I would like boye hooks as the end is far too round and the groove very deep. On the otherhand a pointed hook with no graduation gets caught up in the yarn and can split it. The requirements of knooking and crochet are very different. I thought a pointed hook for knooking would be perfect but it’s awful. On the otherhand a more rounded one is difficult to get in the stitches. The ‘beak’ though on a tapered hook allows me to get into the knit stitches while the rounded end being a bit of a pain still gets into the purl ones. The pointed one I thought was going to be a dream just splits the stitches and you can’t hook the knit stitches with the beak as it isn’t long enough (in line hook).

    With crochet you don’t need it to be very pointed but roundy is awful. You do need a decent groove but not huge for the stitches to get caught in – I find they do with a tapered rounded hook. The pointed ones do not have a big enough groove and you can only aproach the stitch from a certain angle. Neither the boye nor the susan bates hooks seem to have it sussed.

    The hook I like best is from a cheap and very ordinary range that is probably most available in the UK called Pony. It isn’t inline but only juts out slightly. The groove is perfect. It is so slightly tapered that you wouldn’t really know. Best of all is the head which is quite pointed but not excessively so, but it is kind of graduated so it slides in from an angle. The only thing that isn’t quite perfect is the beak is not pointy enough (but that is really only of concern to me when knooking and not when crocheting, it is ok but not as good as the more boye style hook (unknown make purchased on etsy seller who changes up existing alluminium hooks) for getting under the knit stitches.

    So in all my seaches I think I have met a dead end and realised I have what suits me best after all. I would like some pretty colours though! Sometimes you can try and reinvent the wheel. I think ultimately a hook is a hook and you can adapt to use it and we should all stop whinging. Somtimes choice is not a good thing and just makes people sound petulant and spoilt. A crochet hook does not hurt, so all the people without actual medical conditions should stop complaining and appreciate all they have.

  3. Yasmine SAYS...

    I agree with you, Sara. I use the Pony hooks a lot and they are really comfortable, but I want prettier hooks!!!
    I am going to order on Etsy or Ebay but I’m not sure whether to get Boye or Susan Bates in terms of which is most like the Pony hook!!

  4. Pingback: Surina 7″ Wooden Crochet Hook – Review Part I | Rope and Tire