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Knitting Needle Sizes and Needle Conversion Chart

A knitting needle sizes chart can be one of the most handy tools in your knitting bag.

You see needle sizes have a kind of numbering system. There are three numbers associated with each needle size.

The sizes are marked in metric (mm), US sizing or UK/Canadian sizing. Sometimes the knitting needles are marked with a set of numbers too, for instance the metric sizing and the US sizing.

Here’s an example:  A pair of my circular knitting needles reads like this: US 6 / 4.0 mm. However some of my really old knitting needles (hmm OK I’m dating myself here ha-ha) only have one number on them like 12, and then some just have the metric number 8.0 mm.

So how do you know if it’s the size needle you need? Just scroll on down and check on the knitting needle conversion chart and it will help you.

Why Do Knitting Needle Sizes Have Different Numbers?

It depends on a couple of things:knitting needle sizes

  • Which country you live in
  • Which country you purchased your knitting pattern from
  • And where you purchased your knitting needles

All those factors will determine which numbering system will be used.

But more importantly, with a handy knitting needle conversion chart you will be able to see at a glance all the knitting needle sizes and find the one you need.

Note: When you buy knitting needles in the store you may notice two sizes. One size is for the diameter of the needle and the other is the length.

The most important size you need to look for is the diameter.

This number will determine the size of the stitches on your knitting needle and ultimately the size of your finished knitting project. The thicker the needle the bigger the stitches and the thinner the needle the smaller the stitches. It has to do with knitting gauge and it’s something you’ll need to take a look at when you’re ready.

The length of the knitting needle is more of a personal choice. Of course if you will be using lots of stitches then you will definitely need the really long needles however if you aren’t you could go to a shorter knitting needle for comfort sake. See which feels more comfortable in your hands.

Below I have made a knitting needle sizes conversion chart for you to have a look at and then download if you like. Just slide it into your knitting bag so you can access it easily when you need it. That way you will be prepared for whatever size needle your pattern calls for.

If you’d like to print out a copy of my knitting needle conversion chart Click Here

Knitting Needle Sizes Conversion Chart

2.25 - 2.50113
12.0 - 12.7517--

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8 thoughts on “Knitting Needle Sizes and Needle Conversion Chart

  1. I need to switch from 4.5mm to a 2.5– if I’m doing 14 stitches now do I simply double the stitches to equal the same size??
    (I typically crochet)

    1. Hello Linda. No not at all. You need to do exactly what the pattern says. Switch to 2.5 needles and do what it tells you next. They want that section of knitting to pull in. I really need to see the pattern to know more but usually when a pattern asks you to switch to a smaller size needle it’s because you’re knitting a cuff on a sleeve or sock where it needs to be more snug fitting. Hope this helps. 🙂

  2. Hi! I’m trying to figure out how to tell the size (length?) of my circular knitting needles…do I measure just the cable itself, or the needles tip to tip while on the cable? =) Thanks!

    1. Hi Sammi. The cords are used to provide you with the length you need with the needles attached so you’d measure the cord with the needles attached. Eventually you’ll know just by looking at the cords which length will give you the size you need. On my knitters pride set the smallest cord is about 10 inches and when it’s attached to the needles, gives me the 16 inch length I need. Hope this helps. Happy Knitting! 🙂

  3. I need help figuring a project, is there a way to tell what size my Jinque needles are, most of the items call for size 8 to 10…. The largest diameter is a 6 so can i get help to know if it is metric so i cna convert in numbers for my proper stitch count? Thanks sam

    1. Hello Sam. Wow I’ve never even heard of these needles until you mentioned them so I don’t know how much I can help you. The best thing I can suggest is getting a needle sizer and matching the numbers that way. A needle sizer has both US and Metric sizing so when it says 6 you’ll be able to tell whether it’s US or not. The one I have has US sizing on one side and Metric on the other so when you poke the needle through you can tell the size of the needle in both US and Metric.

      The one thing I can tell you is if it’s a 6 metric it will be a pretty thick needle. US size needles go from 0 – 15 and then they get pretty huge after that, with 0 being very thin (usually sock needles) and slowly getting bigger. Standard sizes for a lot of knitting projects are between US 7 – US 9 which are medium sized needles. I know that won’t help too much but will at least give you an idea. Hope this helps a little Sam.

  4. Very helpful, indeed. Am writing from India and would love to receive news letters or any new ideas/ information.
    Shakun Devasar

    1. Hello Shakun. Thank you. I’m so glad you like my site. Currently I don’t have a newsletter however you could follow me on my Facebook page. Whenever I create a new post or page you’ll find it updated on FB as well. Happy Knitting!

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