In Japan, as with the rest of the world, crafters typically use needles (棒針, bouhari) for knitting and hooks (かぎ針, kagibari) for crochet.
In a Japanese knit/crochet pattern, the needle/hook section is often designated with one of the following:
用具 (yougu, tools)
針 (hari, needle/hook)
Examples of needle/hook sizes:
- Straight knitting needles: 棒針5号
- Circular knitting needles: 輪針4号
- Jumbo straight knitting needles: 棒針ジャンボ8ミリ
- Crochet hook: かぎ針3/0号
- Jumbo crochet hook: かぎ針ジャンボ12ミリ or occasionally かぎ針J12ミリ
- Crochet lace/steel hook: レース針2号
- Tunisian crochet hook: アフガン針8号
In US standard sizes, a size X needle and a size X hook would be the same, e.g. a US 6 needle and a US G-6 hook are both 4.0 mm in diameter. However, this is not the case with Japanese needle and hook sizes, e.g. a JPN 6 needle = 3.9 mm, a JPN 6/0 hook = 3.5 mm, and a JPN lace 6 hook = 1.00 mm. Both needle and hook chart conversions are listed below. Japanese needle sizes do not always have an exact equivalent in standard US sizes, in which case the closest size is listed.
Knitting Needle and Tunisian Crochet Hook Sizes – Standard
|JPN needle size (号)||US needle equivalent|
|0||2.1 mm||0||2.0 mm|
|1||2.4 mm||1½||2.5 mm|
|2||2.7 mm||2||2.75 mm|
|3||3.0 mm||2½||3.0 mm|
|4||3.3 mm||3||3.25 mm|
|5||3.6 mm||4 or 5||3.5 or 3.75 mm|
|6||3.9 mm||6||4.0 mm|
|7||4.2 mm||6 or 7||4.0 or 4.5 mm|
|8||4.5 mm||7||4.5 mm|
|9||4.8 mm||7 or 8||4.5 or 5.0 mm|
|10||5.1 mm||8||5.0 mm|
|11||5.4 mm||9||5.5 mm|
|12||5.7 mm||9 or 10||5.5 or 6.0 mm|
|13||6.0 mm||10||6.0 mm|
|14||6.3 mm||10 or 10½||6.0 or 6.5 mm|
|15||6.6 mm||10½||6.5 mm|
Knitting Needle Sizes – Jumbo
|JPN needle size (ミリ)||US needle equivalent|
|7||7 mm||10½||6.5 mm|
|8||8 mm||11||8 mm|
|9||9 mm||13||9 mm|
|10||10 mm||15||10 mm|
|12||12 mm||17||12.75 mm|
|15||15 mm||19||15 mm|
|20||20 mm||35||19 mm|
|25||25 mm||50||25 mm|
Crochet Hook Sizes – Standard
|JPN standard hook size (号)||US standard hook equivalent|
|2/0||2.0 mm||A-0 (or 4 steel)||2.0 mm|
|3/0||2.3 mm||B-1 (or 2 steel)||2.25 mm|
|4/0||2.5 mm||B-1 or C-2||2.25 or 2.75 mm|
|5/0||3.0 mm||C-2 or D-3||2.75 or 3.25 mm|
|6/0||3.5 mm||E-4 (or 00 steel)||3.5 mm|
|7/0||4.0 mm||G-6||4.0 mm|
|8/0||5.0 mm||H-8||5.0 mm|
|10/0||6.0 mm||J-10||6.0 mm|
Crochet Hook Sizes – Jumbo
|JPN jumbo hook size (ミリ)||US standard hook equivalent|
|7||7 mm||K-10½||6.50 mm|
|8||8 mm||L-11||8.00 mm|
|9||9 mm||M/N-13||9.00 mm|
|10||10 mm||N/P-15||10.00 mm|
|15||15 mm||P/Q or Q||15 or 16 mm|
|20||20 mm||S||19 mm|
Crochet Hook Sizes – Lace and Steel
|JPN lace hook size (号)||US steel hook equivalent|
|0||1.75 mm||6||1.80 mm|
|2||1.50 mm||8||1.50 mm|
|4||1.25 mm||10||1.30 mm|
|6||1.00 mm||12||1.00 mm|
|8||0.90 mm||13||0.85 mm|
|10||0.75 mm||14||0.75 mm|
Edited 06-05-2011 to add straight/circular needle types, and jumbo needle and hook sizes
Thanks for the info – it’s actually hard to come by!
Thank you so much! I have been looking for this info for days! Can you help with Japanese yarn weights? I live in Japan, but am trying to use U.S. patterns. I have a hard time knowing what kind of Japanese yarn is appropriate for the yarn weights (i.e. worsted, bulky) listed in my patterns. Thanks!
thank you for your complete needle size conversion ^_^
Thanks so much for this information! It’s so helpful! Thanks thanks thanks!!! 😀
Pingback: Osito y patrón | Tricotoseando
Thank you for the valuable and rare information that you have posted
Please tell me if the Tunisian crochet hook Japanese sizes are the same as Crochet Hook Sizes – Standard
Thank you 🙂
Yes, Tunisian crochet hooks follow the Standard Crochet Hook Sizes.
Hey thanks for the info got my Japanese book today now trying to decipher it.
Pingback: Knitting Needle Sizes |
Pingback: Osito y patrón - Tricotoseando
Thank you for the conversion charts but for the G/6 hook it says 4.0 MM but my G/6 hook says 4.25….how much of a difference would that be when you are crocheting something with this hook? Thanks in advance.
Thank you so much I finally found something that really helped with thisr
Thank you for your information. Very helpfull. I have a question. Do you also have a conversion to Chinese sizes?
No I don’t. Sorry…
Hi. I have a Tulip 00 steel hook that’s written made in Japan on one side and Tulip 00 on the other. Wondering what its size in mm will be. Tried googling a lot but in vain.
Do you know 00 Tulip steel hook?
A US size 00 steel hook is 3.5 mm. That’s the same as a US size E-4 hook.
Thank you so much. This has been so useful!
Pingback: Calibrating tool gauges – Loopholes