When I first started knitting, I stuck to the basics. I used inexpensive bamboo needles and plain-colored wool. I bought those plastic stitch markers for knitting that come in a little baggie at just about any store that sells yarn.
As I grew in confidence and skill, though, I upgraded some of my tools. I bought myself a set of Addi lace clicks to celebrate passing the bar exam a decade ago. I started splurging on hand-dyed yarn for special projects.
But it wasn’t until the last couple of years that I started using pretty stitch markers for my knitting projects.
Mostly, that was a result of my practicality. Stitch markers are easier to lose, and I had a bad habit of losing mine. They also don’t serve their function better if they’re fancier. Unlike really nice yarn, which can have a different drape or a softer hand feel or a color that I simply won’t get in a box store, a fancy stitch marker doesn’t do the job any better than a simple plastic ring.
Learning to Love Stitch Markers
A couple years ago, though, I realized there was added value in something being both useful and pretty. I like working with pretty tools. I like how it feels when I pick up a pair of decorative scissors versus a pair of plain scissors.
So I started buying pretty stitch markers here and there. I’ve got a small collection now, and I realized I definitely have my favorites that I go to again and again. Here are my top stitch markers for knitting right now.
A quick note before we get started: none of this is sponsored content, and there are no affiliate links in this post. At some point in the future, I may do sponsored reviews or use affiliate links to help offset the cost of running this site. When I do, I promise I will always identify sponsored content and affiliate links with clear labels. No games or hidden agendas here.
Now, on to the stitch markers!
Autumn Poppy Designs
Paula Drouillard is the the designer behind Autumn Poppy Designs, where she makes both knitting patterns and stitch markers. She often pairs up with Garlene from The Kitchen Sink Shop to do bundles of stitch markers and project bags. Sometimes, you’ll also see the two of them team with a designer to do a larger collaboration.
What I love about Paula’s stitch markers is that they are lightweight and minimal, but still dainty. Often times, minimalist design veers into an intentionally unfinished or unpolished look, which isn’t my aesthetic.
Paula’s stitch markers usually have a small charm and a small bead or two on them, and that’s it. It makes them excellent for knitters who don’t want to add a ton of bulk to their projects.
The one I have shown here at the left is technically a progress keeper. See that little lobster clasp at the top? That’s for clipping on to your stitches so you can count how many rows/repeats you’ve done. I especially like them for things like decreases down a sweater sleeve, where you need to do a certain number of decreases, but they’re useful for all sorts of situations. When you don’t need a progress keeper, you can turn it into a stitch marker by clipping it to a ring. I’ve got an example of that down below.
I discovered Sassafras Knits while watching Coast to Coast Yarn Company’s Instagram stories one day. Erin was sharing some beautiful new stitch markers she had just bought, and I fell in love. I had to order a set of my own immediately.
I got myself a small set of stitch markers with hexagon rings and blue beads. Since then, this has become my go-to set. I love having matching stitch markers for my larger projects like sweaters, and these ones are great for those projects because they don’t add a ton of heft but are highly decorative.
The rings are also lightweight enough that they are good for using on smaller projects, like socks and mitts. Sometimes, stitch markers can have a ring that is a little bulky. That’s especially common with the hexies, but these ones pass the sock test. I use them on projects with tiny needles all the time and have no issues with gapping caused by a large marker ring.
Rochelle also makes project bags in different sizes and gloriously ornate progress keepers. She’s on hiatus at the moment doing wildlife research (seriously though, how cool is that?), but she’ll be back in September when the research project wraps up. Mark your calendars, set an alarm, do whatever you need to do. Be sure to follow her on Instagram to keep on top of upcoming events.
Little Bitty Delights
If you, like me, love yourself some miniature things, you need to hurry on over to Little Bitty Delights and score yourself some teeny tiny food asap.
Manda is one of the most talented miniaturists I have ever encountered. Watching her videos of how she makes these little food stitch markers is absolutely mesmerizing. Whenever she posts a new reel or IGTV, I get a little rush of joy (or is it a sugar rush? Mysteries abound).
I managed to snag one of her creme brulee markers that came out around the time I released my Creme Brulee Socks, and it adds the perfect touch of whimsy to my projects. Check out the teeny tiny berry and mint leaves on that thing!
On top of the cuteness, Manda’s attention to detail is exquisite. There have been several times where I have wanted to actually reach into her Instagram post and take a bite out of the tiny, fake food she’s making. That’s how realistic it looks.
So whether you’re in the market for:
- itty bitty donuts with sprinkles on them,
- miniature gingerbread cottages,
- tiny mugs of hot cocoa with the most real-looking fake whipped cream I’ve ever seen, or
- a little plate with a hamburger and fries (seriously, you should see this thing, it’s amazing),
Manda’s collection of minuscule snacks and treats is sure to delight.
Ocean by the Sea
I am the proud and slightly obsessed owner of a single, perfect, precious stitch marker by Ocean by the Sea.
It has a large piece of raw citrine on the bottom and a gleaming seed pearl stacked on top of it. The marker is on a lobster claw, but as with all progress keepers, you can easily transform it into a stitch marker by just clipping it onto a ring.
When I use this stitch marker, I feel a little bit like some decadent Renaissance-era Noble woman, a modern-day Lucrezia Borgia with stainless steel needles. The effect is doubled when I pull out my favorite red velvet comforter during the winter time. (Listen, don’t be too impressed—it’s polyester velvet and it’s from Target, but I have an imagination big enough to fill in the gaps.)
Ocean’s stitch markers are even harder to snag than her yarn. Your best bet, then, is to follow her on Instagram and turn on post notifications. She’ll generally let everybody know ahead of time when an update with stitch markers is coming. These updates are much less frequent than the yarn updates, though, so you’ll need to set a reminder for yourself somewhere.
Also, remember how I mentioned up above that you can turn a progress keeper into a stitch marker just by clipping it to a ring? Take a close look at this picture. I clipped this one onto a plain hexie that I had in my collection, and ta da! Easy peasy stitch marker conversion.
Help Me Find More Stitch Markers!
So these are my current favorites, but I’m forever on the lookout for more pretty stitch markers. I have umpteen knitting projects happening at the same time, and they all need stitch markers. If you have a favorite stitch marker maker, I’d love your recommendations! Because I will definitely end up doing a round two of this stitch marker review at some point in the near future.