Recently, I have been giving a lot of advice and recommendations to people about looming, what looms to use and things to do. Helpful resources are something I am always willing to share, and I am going to start a small series here on my blog regarding different aspects of loom knitting.
For this first in the series, I am going to start with looms! There are so many looms to consider, different brands and also different shapes and types of looms. Depending on where you are in your loom knitting journey, you may or may not have looms already. Also, depending on what you want to make can help determine where you start in your loom journey and what looms to get first.
To anyone starting out, I highly recommend to start with a round loom set. My favorite round loom set is by a brand called Loops and Threads. The set has four round looms in different sizes, comes with a loom hook and a needle and basic instructions. If you use a coupon you can get this set for as little as $7 which is a price you can’t beat! I got this set and here is what they look like:
These are by far my favorite round loom set. I own the Boye Loom knitting set (available at many places, even Walmart), and have had issues with them in that the pegs do not stay in easily and are always falling out. I also find it more difficult to use than the Loops and Threads brand. I also think the loom hook used for the Loops and Thread brand is better and easier to use than that in the Boye Loom knitting set.
Once you have the round looms you can do so many things with them. Hats, scarves, bags, fingerless gloves, socks etc. So starting out with these will allow you to start up making hats and learning the basics, to doing more complicated pieces like this Wesminster Eyelet Scarf I made (and yup, made it on a round loom!).
Long looms are also great. I have the Knifty Knitter set, which I have no qualms about. It works great, there are four different sizes that come in that set. The smallest one is great for basic scarves that are just the perfect size, while the longest one can make a good sized blanket. Long looms allow you to make things such as scarves and bags. If you use loom clips (they sit in the middle of the loom and allow you to make something in the round), you can even make hats or fingerless gloves, or anything that is round.
Another loom to note is the flower loom. This loom is the smallest of all and is primarily used to make flowers. However, this loom can also be used for other projects such as baby booties. They’re small and affordable so having one to keep on the side is definitely a safe investment. I would suggest a Knifty Knitter brand or a Loops and Threads one. The Boye brand one I got came with bent pegs and is crooked.
All new looms, even single looms, do come with the loom hook from that brand. By buying different brands you can try out the different hooks and see what works for you. I did recently get a custom hook from Gipson Wands, they took a Loops and Thread’s metal hook portion and created a gorgeous wooden handle! It is so lightweight and perfect for looming. Here is the one I have:
If you do not want to start with just a round loom set, or just a long loom set, you can always look into the Martha Stewart Loom set. It is a set where you can make a lot of different configurations because the loom is not put together. You put it together yourself and also use whatever number of pegs you need for whatever it is you are making. This loom is a bit pricier, even using coupons it was close to $30. However, with this set, you have a long loom set, a round loom set, and also can make so many configurations that it is cost effective. It is a bit of a challenge and can seem overwhelming but there are a lot of great resources online on how to learn to use it and stuff. The hook that comes with this set is very nice, and it fits the pegs as it should. I cannot use the hook with any other looms though, as it works mostly only with this set. I have this set, and am using it now to make a Clapotis shawl which I will hopefully be debuting soon. I am also using a portion of this loom to make a ruffle scarf:
There are a few other looms, an afghan loom which is a large s-shaped loom that you use to make bigger pieces but on a loom that is more space efficient. There are socks looms of two different gauges that are perfect for just socks or when you want to make something with a very small gauge. All in one boards are also popular, I have never used one, but it is something to consider. There are mini looms now which are small enough to be called pocket looms.
I hope this has been helpful to see major differences in looms, and also to see what just one person recommends. Loom knitting as a whole has come such a far way since I started, and I can only hope to help spread some of this wisdom!
If you have any questions feel free to leave a comment. I am happy to suggest or recommend other looms or give my opinion on other parts of loom knitting.