Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Understanding machine needles

Let’s talk about needles. Last week in our forum discussion we learned how often you should change your needles on you sewing machine. If you missed out on the discussion, head over to Quilting Weekly and see what you we talked about. By the way, each week I will be posting a new topic in the general forum to help expand your minds.

But what size needle should I use?

Choose the correct size needle for your project by first matching the thread thickness to the fabric; then to the needle. Size 75/11 is suitable for nearly every part of the quilt making process; piecing machine appliqué and quilting. If aslightly heavier thread is used for quilting, such as 40 weight or metallic, a size 90/14 needle may be used. For a thicker thread, try using a 100/16.

The numbers on the packages what do they mean?

When you look at a package of machine needles you will see two numbers separated by a slash. The number on the left side of the slash is the European size (range of 60 to 120); on the right hand side is the American size (range of 8 to 21).

Did you know?

With machine needles the larger the number the larger the needle
With hand needles the larger the number the smaller the needle

Pick the best needle for the job!

    For piecing & binding with cotton fabric and cotton thread
    size 75/11 or 80/12

    For piecing with flannel
    size 90/14
    For quilting with monofilament thread
    size 60/8, 70/10, 75/11, or 80/12

    For machine applique
    size 60/8, 70/10, 75/11, or 80/12

    For sewing batiks, silk, or fabrics with high count cotton thread
    size 70/10

    For embellishing with decorative threads
    size 80/12 or 90/14

    For adding binding and borders
    size 75/11 or 80/12

Hope this information helps you make better decisions on what needle to buy or use for your quilting projects!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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