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Clover Soft Touch Crochet Hooks

I hadn’t been crocheting long when I realized how much it hurt my hands. My fingers ached, and sometimes the tip of my thumb went numb. Despite my mother’s insistence that it was because I was holding the hook, and the yarn, wrong (and in the wrong hand), I knew it was because traditional crochet hooks are not ergonomically correct. Especially when crocheting tight fabrics in single crochet, like in amigurumi, there is a lot of pressure exerted over just a tiny area of the hook’s handle.

Enter the Clover Soft Touch crochet hook. Isn’t she a beauty? With a nice wide handle to spread out my grip, I don’t feel that I’m squeezing it too tightly, like I did with the traditional model. And when I’m spending a lot of time crocheting (like I did while watching the Olympics), I can definitely tell the difference in the way my fingers feel the morning after.

Now, a long-time crocheter (like my mom, who is resistant to change under the best of circumstances), may not feel the need to fix what isn’t broken. She claims that the bone in her finger has a groove in it right where the hook goes, thank you very much, and doesn’t need any newfangled crochet hooks to make afghan after afghan (after afghan). But since I’m new enough to not be crotchety about my crochet, and I tend to make things with a tighter stitch, I’m happy to let the Soft Touch keep my finger bones groove-free.

If you hold your hook like a pencil, and not like a dinner knife, I can see where this hook may not make a huge difference in your grip, because you’re used to having three free fingers anyway. But I’m a dinner-knife-grip kind of gal, and I can’t say enough good things about it. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve found some things I don’t like too. In fact, let’s get to that part of the article already:

Pros:

  • Wide handle to spread out pressure from fingers
  • Hook head is more like the Boye than the Susan Bates (crocheters know what I’m talking about, and if you’re not a crocheter, I bet you’re pretty bored right now), and I like it better.
  • The finish on the metal is kind of, frosted maybe? Sanded? Not shiny smooth like other hooks, and I think the yarn slips easier, which I like. My mother hates it, as I’m sure you would have guessed.

Cons:

  • All of the hook sizes are the same golden yellow color. That’s annoying, because I can’t tell them apart without reading them, and I’m lazy. They make the soft touch handles in different colors for their plastic light-up hooks, so I don’t know why they didn’t carry them over to the metal ones.
  • I was going to say that they don’t make them in those teeny tiny steel hook sizes where they’d be REALLY useful, but they do, so never mind.
  • Oh my word, they’re spendy. They cost $4.50 MORE a piece than the Boye hooks. Ouch.

I suppose you’d like to see a project that I made with the Clover Soft Touch crochet hook. I’m sure the future owner of this blanket would like to see it too, before he heads off to college… if I could just get it finished! (he’s only a month old, I have some time…)

One super soft green blankey for baby James:

Yarn: Sensations Angel Hair Light Green (exclusively at JoAnn’s)

Stitch pattern: linked triple crochet

Clover Soft Touch hooks are available online at Amazon.com and directly from Clover. They retail for $6.50 each, but I think they’re worth it. I see now you can get them as a gift set with a handy storage pouch, or just the pouch by itself, which looks like a good stocking stuffer for me, just as soon as I finish crocheting the stockings. Ahem.

So have you made the switch to the Clover Soft Touch hooks, or are you keeping it real with the old-school Boye and Susan Bates? Leave us a comment and let us know!

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Dana Vitek

Dana Vitek is a craft-‐‑supply hoarder with an obscenely understanding husband. She works full-‐‑time as a geologist, and spends her free time sort of paying attention to her two kids, reading a lot, and crafting. She's a crocheter, but not a knitter because knitting seems way too complicated. She's a card maker, but usually only 10 minutes before a birthday party. She cusses at her sewing machine. She has at least 12 different types of glue, but can never find the scissors she wants when she wants them. Dana started writing and editing for Craft Critique in 2008. She is perhaps best known for her Mother of All Black Ink Tests, and her annual April Fool's posts. She blogs extremely irregularly at Stamping Science. http://stampingscience.blogspot.com

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7 Responses to Clover Soft Touch Crochet Hooks

  1. Sarah {SCS: Sairabee} September 26, 2008 at 2:41 pm #

    I have some of these, but they are a different brand. They came in a set of 8 (I think), in a pretty floral embroidered pouch for $29.99 from the Cross Stitchery catalog. 😉 I love them!

  2. IamSusie September 29, 2008 at 10:29 am #

    I use the knife grip too. I don’t really get hand cramps. I always wondered about these fancy hooks, but the non-color coding is a deal breaker!

    That blankie looks luscious! I want to dive right in to it!

  3. Mia September 29, 2008 at 11:16 am #

    I love using these! I have them in all sizes, even the steel hooks. I do agree with you about the color of the handle, but I understand the uniformity aspect as well. The good thing about them being available at Joann’s is that with the 40% off coupon, they do end up being really affordable.

    I use the pencil grip, thought sometimes when I’m crocheting really tightly I end up knifing it!

    Great post!

  4. Tsoniki September 29, 2008 at 5:18 pm #

    I use Susan Bates hooks and my fingers don’t hurt but in the same spot where it does if I write a lot. You know, that bump some people get on their middle finger from gripping the pencil too hard (so I was told LOL) (which, oh my gosh, I just looked and it’s practically gone! amazing what typing does for you Haha). 🙂

  5. ~wenhether~ September 29, 2008 at 5:53 pm #

    I have a few of the light up ones but I dont use them much. The guage is different on them from regular metal hooks. So I cant go from one hook to another in the middle of a project.

    I might try these though because they are metal. I think my hands need a break.

  6. Dani in NC October 4, 2008 at 7:32 pm #

    My neighbor uses these and loves them. She’s a new crocheter without a hook collection so buying these one or two at a time isn’t a big deal to her. However, I can’t get over the price. I already have a set of hooks so I can’t bring myself to shell out more for these.

  7. Etha October 6, 2008 at 6:29 am #

    I have switched and I’m never going back 🙂 I just wish they would have the “collection” with the pouch expanded to include smaller and larger sizes, I think right now it goes from C to J or something like that.