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Knitting Needles for Bulky Yarn – Your Complete Guide for 2020

Bulky yarn, using this type of yarn, which is the thickest yarn weight, has grown in popularity in recent years. Particularly with beginner knitters or people looking for a quick, fun project.

You’ll either love or hate working with this type of yarn, but it’s well worth a try. But what needles are you supposed to use for them?

Read on for the best needles for bulky yarn, what to knit with these yarns and more.

Table Of Contents

What Is Bulky Yarn?

Bulky yarn is a general category that encompasses three different yarn weights outlined by the US Craft Council. Bulky, Super Bulky, and Jumbo, in increasing thickness.

They’re much thicker than most yarns you might be used to.

Created for extreme and novelty knitting, this yarn can be used for a variety of chunky knit projects, and the creations knit up very quickly!

What Size Is Super Bulky Yarn?

Bulky is weight classification 5, and has an average gauge of 12-15 stitches per 4″.

Super Bulky is weight classification 5, and has an average gauge of 6-11 stitches per 4″.

Jumbo is weight classification 7, and has an average gauge of 6 or fewer stitches per 4″.

Pros & Cons Of Knitting With Bulky Yarn

Pros

  • The obvious one is how much quicker it is to knit a project, even if you were to knit the same thing with a thinner yarn, the amount of time it takes is much less.
  • If you struggle with hand-eye coordination or fiddly tasks, or just have shorter or thicker fingers, the larger needles and thicker yarn make it easier to knit.
  • You don’t need as much yardage compared to thinner yarns, which may be cheaper.
  • Perfect for winter garments, as they trap heat very well!
  • Make for very comfortable and soft clothing.
  • Excellent for warm blankets, and cozy household furniture.

Cons

  • Not suitable for complicated stitchwork, as they won’t show up very well, even with something more simple like seed stitch.
  • Generally sold in balls or skeins that have much less yardage, so it can be more expensive depending on the amount of yarn you need.
  • Also, the balls themselves can be quite expensive, as it’s quite labor-intensive to produce.
  • Sometimes the yarn isn’t tightly spun, so it pills very easily.
  • They make bulky garments, which don’t suit everyone.
  • The resulting projects are also quite heavy, which could be a bit uncomfortable to wear, especially as a scarf.
  • You’ll get hot quite quickly wearing clothing made out of this.
  • People who have arthritis, hand pain/strain or carpal tunnel syndrome will find working with these yarns uncomfortable at best.

What Size Needles For Super Bulky Yarn?

For the weight Bulky, size US 9 – 11, metric size 5.5mm to 8mm.

For the weight Super Bulky, size US 11 and over, metric size 8mm and over.

For the weight Jumbo, size US 17 and over, metric size 11mm and over.

The Best Jumbo Knitting Needles

Knitter’s Pride Symfonie Dreamz Interchangeable Needles Chunky Set

Knitter's Pride Symfonie Dreamz Interchangeable Needles Chunky Set

These wood needles are made from laminated birch. They are a set of three of the most common sizes of needles suited for super bulky, bulky, and jumbo yarn.

Features

  • Sizes Included – US 13 (9.0mm), US 15 (10.0mm), & US 17 (12.0mm)
  • Cord Lengths Included – 24″ & 32″
  • Needle Tips Are 4.5″ Long
  • Notions Included – 4 End caps and 2 Cord keys
  • Made From – Smooth laminated birch

Pros

  • Available in an assortment of nice colors
  • Smooth wooden tips are warm to touch
  • Lightweight and comfortable to use

Cons

  • Not very much variety in cable length available,
  • Some found the needles came out of the casing accidentally
  • Some found they came unscrewed often, but this is often because they weren’t screwed in tight enough
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Denise Love2Knit Interchangeables

Denise Love2Knit Interchangeables

Denise has been a favorite in the knitting world of the US for many years. Their needles made of plastic resin are smooth, lightweight, and affordable.

Features

  • Sizes Included – US10 / 6mm, 10.5 / 6.5 mm, 11 / 8 mm, 13 / 9 mm, and 15 / 10mm.
  • Cord Lengths Included – 20″, 24″ and 32″.
  • Needle Tips Are “Long
  • Notions Included – 2 end buttons, one cord extender, and a vinyl case with a pouch for cords and extra notions
  • Made From – Plastic Resin

Pros

  • Sturdy and flexible cords
  • Smooth and lightweight needle tips
  • Each size is a different color
  • Good selection of sizes and cord lengths included
  • Comfortable to use
  • Easy connection system

Cons

  • Some found the connectors broke
  • You might not like the feel of the plastic needles
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Clover Takumi Interchangeable Circular Knitting Needles

Clover Takumi Interchangeable Circular Knitting Needles

Made with lovely, smooth bamboo crafted in Japan from locally sourced materials, Clover Takumi knitting needles are available in this affordable interchangeable set that’s well worth the investment.

Features

  • Sizes Included – US 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 10.5, 11, 13, 15
  • Cord Lengths Included – 16, 24, 29, 36 and 48″
  • Needle Tips Are 5″ Long
  • Made From – Bamboo

Pros

  • Great for all manner of different projects, not just bulky yarns
  • Excellent selection and a variety of needle sizes and cable lengths
  • Made of smooth bamboo that warms to the touch
  • Excellent craftsmanship, sure to last for years
  • Good for dark-colored yarns

Cons

  • Not suitable for speed knitting
  • Some may not like how bamboo tends to grab the yarn, but that’s just the material’s nature
  • Has a bit of memory, but soaking the cords in hot water smoothes them out
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Premier Yarns Acrylic Needles Interchangeable Knitting Needle Set

Premier Yarns Acrylic Needles Interchangeable Knitting Needle Set

Made from smooth acrylic plastic, premier yarns made affordable, quality needles. This set is no exception, specifically designed for chunky yarn.

Features

  • Sizes Included – 13/9mm 15/10mm and 17/12mm
  • Cord Lengths Included – 24″, 32″ and 40″
  • Needle Tips Are “Long
  • Notions Included – Six end caps and three cable keys
  • Made From – Acrylic Plastic

Pros

  • Smooth
  • Lightweight
  • Affordable
  • Comfortable to use

Cons

  • Some found the connection would accidentally unscrew
  • Sometimes the needles don’t last
Click to Learn More / Buy from Amazon

ChiaoGoo Circular 40″ Wooden Knitting Needles

ChiaoGoo Circular 40

Made from Chinese Rubberwood, a very sustainable hardwood that has lots of tensile strength and is highly durable. Available in a wide variety of sizes, these wooden circular large knitting needles are smooth and lightweight.

Features

  • Sizes Available – US( 0, 1, 1.5, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8 these sizes are for thinner yarn), (9, 10, 11, 13, 15, 17, 19, 35, 50 these are good options for thicker/bulky yarn)
  • Cord Lengths Available – 40″
  • Needle Tips Are 7″ Long
  • Made From – Chinese Rubberwood

Pros

  • Great for a wide variety of projects due to the length of the cord
  • Smooth, durable hardwood
  • Warms to the hand
  • Sizes are laser etched on the needle
  • Slick, smooth needles
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Some found it had too much grip
  • Some found the cord wasn’t fused tightly enough to the needle and caught the yarn
Click to Learn More / Buy from Amazon

Your Questions Answered

What Size Needles For A Chunky Blanket?

It depends on the weight of the yarn, but needles that are US 11-19 are an excellent place to start. Use the yarn label for the yarn you’ve chosen as a guideline.

How Do I Know What Size Knitting Needle To Use?

Usually, the yarn label will tell you the recommended sizes for the needles to use, or the pattern you’re working from.

What Can I Knit With Bulky Yarn?

Here is a list of ideas for projects you can knit with this weight of yarn.

  • Home decor
  • Cushions
  • Couch Pillows
  • Rugs
  • Blankets
  • Scarves
  • Sweaters
  • Cardigans
  • Shawls or Wraps

What Size Needles For A 5 Stitches Per Inch Gauge Super Bulky Yarn?

Generally, the sizes 17, 19, and over work best for this kind of knitting gauge.

Hopefully, this post helped you discover which needles are best to help you knit the chunky blanket, sweater, scarf, or home decor project you want to.

Though it may be a difficult or easy task, depending on your experience, the lovely result will be worth it!

Regardless of whether you’re a long time or a beginner knitter, knitting with these yarns would be something interesting to try.

About Jodie Morgan

Hi. I’m Jodie Morgan, owner and creator of Knit Like Granny. (Yes, I’m a real person :) ) Thanks for being here.

I created Knit Like Granny to help show 1,000,000 people the benefits of knitting & highlight alternatives to fast fashion.

I love knitting and have met so many other fabulous knitters through this site. I enjoy learning and helping others discover the joys of working with yarn.

Please say hello!

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