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Knitting, Crochet & Yarn Buying Guide

Tags:  knitting needles | knitting patterns | crochet thread | yarn | craftsWrite a guide!

Knitting was one of the first industrialized crafts, but that hasn’t stopped enthusiasts. In fact, thanks to celebrities such as Madonna, Julia Roberts, and Sarah Jessica Parker, knitting has become one the most popular crafts in the U.S. today. From both new and vintage yarns, to needles and knitting machines, eBay offers a great way to stock up on all your knitting and crocheting supplies.

Discover Knitting & Crochet


Discover Knitting & Crochet

These days, knitting and crocheting aren’t just hobbies for elderly ladies; many hip young women in big cities are joining knitting circles and creating everything from scarves to beanies and sweaters.

Get to know knitting basics

At its simplest, knitting is a means of looping yarns in a series of parallel, interlocking rows to form a knit fabric. Two knitting needles, yarn, and a little instruction are all you need to get started. Knitting can also be accomplished by knitting machines.

Consider crochet

Crochet is a similar process, but you use a crochet hook to pull loops through a slipknot. You can pull multiple loops through the knot and, if you use a fine thread, you can make highly intricate and delicate patterns. Among the most popular patterns are filet, Tunisian, and broomstick lace.

  • Filet crochet: Filet crochet works from a pattern or graph. Using fine thread, it is possible to work text into filet crochet.    

  • Tunisian crochet: Tunisian crochet uses elongated hooks with stoppers. It creates a thicker fabric with a definite front and back.     

  • Broomstick lace: Broomstick lace actually uses thick needles instead of hooks and is useful for making shawls and blankets.


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Explore Knitting Machines


Explore Knitting Machines

Knitting machines use rows of hooks and sliders to simulate the repetitive knitting and purling of knitting by hand. This makes it easy to do a large quantity of knitting quickly.

Understand knitting machine basics

Most complete knitting machines have three parts: a main knitting bed, a shaping device, and a ribbing bed.

  • Main knitting bed: The main knitting bed is where the knitting actually takes place.    

  • Shaping device: The shaping device takes a drawn pattern and lets you know how to operate the machine.    

  • Ribbing bed: The ribbing bed lets you apply ribs and different patterns to your garment.

Consider knitting machine features

Different machines have different features, so the kind of knitting you want to do should inform your decision. Depending on whether you’re going to use a light- or heavy-weight yarn and the patterns you choose, you’ll need different knitting machines.

Lightweight machines usually knit with floats, while heavier machines double knit without floats. Most knitting machines come with standard-gauge needles for average-sized yarns. You cannot knit heavy yarn on standard needles; they’re just too close together. Likewise, if you knit fine yarn on heavy needles, you’ll end up with something that looks like a hairnet.

Brother, Passap, and Singer all make popular knitting machines.


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Determine the Right Yarn for You


Determine the Right Yarn for You

Yarn is the principal material used in knitting. It is a long, narrow length of fiber that makes up many different textiles. Yarn can be made from many different materials, some natural, others synthetic.

  • Natural yarn: Natural materials used to make yarns include angora, cashmere, mohair, cotton, silk, and wool. Natural fibers are prized for their texture and suppleness.     

  • Synthetic yarn: Common synthetic materials used to make yarn include acrylic, nylon, rayon, and polyester. Synthetic fibers are water-resistant, strong, and fire-retardant.    

  • Blended yarn: Blended yarn combines the best qualities of natural and synthetic yarns.

You can also find many specialty yarns such as handspun & handpainted yarns, festive metallic yarns, and frilly eyelash yarn. The thickness of a yarn is determined by how many plys it has. A ply is a single strand of yarn. The strands are then plied, or twisted together to form the yarn.

The thickness of the yarn you select will affect the overall weight and texture of your garment. When you are selecting a yarn to purchase, you can often find helpful guidance on the knitting pattern you select.

Yarn is often wrapped in balls or cylindrical skeins and usually sold by weight. U.S. suppliers usually sell yarn in skeins of 3, 4, 6, or 8 ounces.


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Find Knitting, Crochet & Yarn on eBay


Find Knitting, Crochet & Yarn on eBay

Once you know what type of knitting supplies, crochet supplies, or yarn you need, go to the Crafts portal, click Knitting, Crocheting, or Yarn, and start searching for item listings on eBay.

  • Categories: The Categories list on the left side of each page will help you narrow down your listings by item type. For example, when you land on a Knitting listings page, you'll find links for Knitting Kits, Machines, Needles, Patterns, and more.   

  • Keyword search: Search eBay listing titles for specific words. For example, if you want to find crochet hooks, type "crochet hooks" (without quotation marks) into the Search box. Click "Search title and description" to expand your results. Visit eBay's Search Tips page for more tips on searching with keywords.

If you can't find exactly what you want, try shopping eBay Stores, tell the eBay Community what you want by creating a post on Want It Now, or save a search on My eBay and eBay will email you when a match becomes available.


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Buy Knitting, Crochet & Yarn With Confidence


Buy Knitting, Crochet & Yarn With Confidence

Before making your purchase, make sure you know exactly what you're buying, research your seller, and understand how eBay and PayPal protect you.

Know your purchase

Carefully read the details in item listings.

  • Figure delivery costs into your final price. If you spend a lot of money, make sure the seller will insure the item when it ships.

  • If you want more information, ask by clicking the "Ask seller a question" link under the seller's profile.

  • Always make sure to complete your transaction on eBay (with a bid, Buy It Now, or Best Offer). Transactions conducted outside of eBay are not covered by eBay protection programs.

  • Never pay for your eBay item using instant cash wire transfer services through Western Union or MoneyGram. These payment methods are unsafe when paying someone you do not know.

Know your seller

Research your seller so you feel positive and secure about every transaction.

  • What is the seller's Feedback rating? How many transactions have they completed? What percentage of positive responses do they have?

  • What do buyers say in their Feedback? Did the seller receive praise?

  • Most top eBay sellers operate like retail stores and have return policies. Do they offer a money-back guarantee? What are the terms and conditions?

Buyer protection

In the unlikely event that you don't receive your item or it is not as described, eBay Buyer Protection will cover your purchase price plus original shipping. Learn more.


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