Tanja's Lush and Lacy Cardigan
My new long, lace shawl-collared vest

Knitting or crocheting in the dark? A product review and giveaway.

In recent years, there's been such an amazing selection of new, innovative things for knitters and crocheters!  I never had a chance to try them yet, but I remember the knitting needles that light up (are they still around?) being all the rage for a bit.  I suppose I do knit in low light situations more than I even realized!  Late night knitting and crocheting is such a little luxury when the house is so quiet and you just want to do "one more row"!

So, for you fellow late night knitters and crocheters,Beam_Read_Lt here's an interesting product that was sent to me for free so I could review it... a special reading light that leaves you hands-free! 

Does it work well for us knitters?  Read on for my thoughts. . .

It's called the "Beam N Read".  I received 3 versions, 1 with 3 leds (the one you see at the left here), another brighter one with 6 leds, and a special 3 led one with magnifier attachments.

They all come nicely packaged in shrink wrapped VHS-sized or slightly larger boxes.  Yes, the packaging looks like something you'd find in a hardware store display more than in a yarn shop, but that's because it's not specifically for knitting or crocheting.

It's really being sold as an all-purpose light that can be used for reading, walking, for emergencies, while commuting, and working in any kind of low-light situation.  It's hands-free feauture does lend itself quite well to knitting and crocheting or any other kind of needlework or crafting.

Here's how it works.  You hang it around your neck and you can angle the light beam down in front of you.  The neck strap adjusts very easily by just sliding the little adjusters along the cord.  It's really nice and simple.  No on or off button.  Laying the light beam flat will automatically turn the light off, angling it will turn it on.

It's powered with 4 AA batteries, which is convenient, although it does add a bit of weight to your neck.  They say the battery life should be at least 120 hours, which sounds great!

It uses low entery LED bulbs, which won't burn out.

The 3 led light is decent enough light for basic knitting or crocheting, but I would go with the 6 led version if I was doing any detailed work, like lace or any other special techniques that required me to see the stitches more clearly.

The magnifier attachments are nifty on the magnifier model - they come in 2X, 4X, and 6X power levels.  They are simply plastic magnifying plates that attach to the light easily and vary in magnification depending on what you need.  Great for those of us that are needing a little help seeing smaller stitches and don't like reading glasses.  Plus, they come in nice protective pouches so they won't get scratched if sitting in your knitting or crochet bag.Beam_Read_Lt2

I did have to fiddle with the strap and placement of the light on my chest to get it to angle correctly.  I tend to knit with my arms up a bit, not actually in my lap (like the knitter in their photo here), so the light could only angle up enough if I made the strap quite short.  This would not be an issue if you were working at a table or really did knit or crochet lower on your lap.  It's farily adjustable, so it should work for most people with some fiddling.

So, this light is a great idea!  A nice thing to have in your knitting or crochet bag if you do often knit or crochet in the dark and don't wish to turn on the lamp (and disturb a sleeping DH, for example).

It's not perfect, but I don't like the reading lights that my DH has used for my nightime knitting either.  The one he wears on his ear like a bluetooth runs out of batteries (special, harder to get and pricier types) too fast and everytime he looks up at me or turns his head my way, I get blinded by the beam.  His other reading lights are not hands-free for knitting or crochet since they must all clip to the book cover.  So, this Beam N Read is the best option I've seen.

Beam_Read_Lt_6ledBeam N Reads retail for around $13 to $25 and are sold by the company at http://www.readinglight.com.

** Want your own Beam N Read for your night-time knitting or crocheting habit!? **
I'm giving away the 6 led version.  All you night knitters and crocheters, please leave a comment on this blog post to enter this giveaway!  Please leave your comment by March 21st, 9pm PST.  One lucky random commenter will be chosen.  One comment per person, please.

DO YOU HAVE A PRODUCT FOR SWEATERBABE TO REVIEW?  If you do, please email me at: reviews@sweaterbabe.com.  Read the submission details.

*** March 25th Winner Chosen! ***

Congrats to Bonnie, who left her comment on March 9, 2010 and was randomly chosen from the 124 comment entries!

Bonnie has won the 6 LED Beam 'N Read Light. 



Sounds like a great idea, I have tried several things for that extra light to knit a bit more without too much success so far. I really want one for knitting in the passenger seat of the car - we travel enough that I knit while riding and have to stop when the light goes.


nice review & giveaway

Cynthia Galbicsek

Wow what a great idea! I find the right amount of light to make such a huge difference in weather I have to pull out stitches or not. This gadget would be a life saver for me. LED is such a bright light.


Great idea!

Alice Lawrence

Well it sure has a flashlight propped on a pillow beat!! A great idea!!

Robin Diebold

I would love to have a light to use when crafting.

Teckla Buller

What a nifty gadget for those of us who knit in low light. But what I'd really like is to win this as a thank you for a very wonderful co-worker. She has cheerfully given of her 50 years knitting experience to teach some of us "newbies" not only the basics, but to share some of the helpful tips she's learned over the years. It sure makes a difference! Hopefully, in time, we will gain enough experience to share this wonderful craft with others too.


Sounds like a neet idea for knitting or reading a book in bed. I like IT.

Sandi S

I got a chance to try out one of these lights when I stopped by a friend's house. It is great but I couldn't talk her out of hers. :(
I would love to have one of these for myself as I knit at night a lot and my eyes aren't as good as they used to be.

brenda castiel

Sounds very useful. Hope I win!

By the way, congrats on being featured on the Knitpicks site!


This seems like it might be a better light source than my knit light. I'd love to give it a try!

Barb Boran

Anything that allows me to keep knitting all hours of the day and night are for me.
I hope i win. I love your patterns.

P. Roberson

The area I do my knitting and crocheting in isn't the best when night falls. My eyes aren't as good as they used to be, either. That light sure would help with the lacework I've been working on lately!!

ava reddick

What a neat idea, yes please enter me in the giveaay contest.

Kenna Blair

Perfect for me as I only knit when I have an opportunity while watching TV with my husband in the evening. He doesn't like me keeping the lights on as it produces glare on the TV.


this would be way cool for me. i never thought of having one of those for knitting bug in me. i end up falling asleep without shutting out the bedroom light cause after an alnighter i am too lazy to get up and shut out the light
laurie d


Definitely looks like something that would do the job wherever you are. Yes, I would like one!


I would love to have one of the led versions! It seems as I get older I need more light while knitting. I do some very fine knitting (0000 needles) and can barely see after an hour or so of work.


Looks much more useful than an ordinary booklight!

Linda Pierce

Definitely something to use on trips. i never found the lighted needles worth using. A book light doesn't cut it either.

Vicki Morgan-Bogart

I am always knitting in the car on trips & we drive at night a lot. This would really help. I have tried booklights that clip onto books but they don't work very well. It's hard to find something to clip it on that will put it at the right angle. This look like a perfect solution. I could also use the magnifying lenses, as my eyes are getting worse as I get "wiser" (as a previous note stated). Please put me in the running.


LOOOOOOVE THIS!!!! How much more knitting I could get done if I had this to light the way!

Linda McKay

I'm such a nightowl that I should be HOOTING instead of posting"! So as not to disturb the hubbie (who starts snoring the minute his head hits the pillow!), I've tried so many night lights and desk lamps to spotlight what I'm doing -- but all the gadgets either lack power or cause trouble when I want to focus on a specific area. This looks like the solution for me! Hip, hip, Hooray ... hip, hip, HOOTay!

katie mudd

just what i need!


Thanks for all the great comment entries! Entries are now closed. Winner to be announced later this week. Good luck!

The comments to this entry are closed.