When you’re creating your garments, sometimes the last thing that’s on your mind is your needle. Unless it breaks in the middle of your project of course! But maybe it might be breaking just a little.. too often. Especially when you’re using your most cherished fabrics, like faux suede or nylon jersey, and you can’t figure out why your sewing machine ate a chunk of it. And that’s totally okay! You may just need a refresher on just what type of needle to use in different scenarios. For example, a needle for denim is completely different needle than what’s used for lace. Different projects call for different needles, and Mood is here to help you navigate your sewing kit!
So even if you’re a beginner who doesn’t know where to start, or if you’re an advanced sewist who wants to break up your seam ripper for good, let’s all take a look at the seven most popular needles and their uses!
Universal Needles are the most common of all needles, and are typically used with most woven fabrics. They are perfect enough to go through delicate fabric, and usually heavy enough to pass through your common cottons and linens. Take a look, they most likely what’s inserted in your sewing machine right now! Also, note that it’s an excellent idea to always have an extra pack of universal needles on hand. They can be substituted for most projects, and are smart to use for a quick fix!
Top-stitching Needles are extra sharp and used for thicker fabrics, much like the quilting needle. They’re able to pass through thick fabrics, even batting! These types of needles have a large eye like the embroidery needle (but bigger), and a long and slender point that’s perfect to pass through multiple layers. You may use this particular needle for decorative stitching on denim!
Quilting Needles are used for, you guessed it, quilting! They are shaped to be tapered, to pass through multiple layers of fabric when quilting. Perfect for when you want to make a blanket with heavy, fluffy batting.
Ball Point Needles look like your regular needle, but with a rounded tip at the end where a point would be. This is to ensure that when going through their intended fabric (synthetic, stretchy jersey) they don’t rip when going back and forth through the plates in your sewing machine. Thus, making the needle slip right through any yarns of a stable knit!
Regular Point Needles (Sharp) are typically used for basic sewing machine stitches. The different sizes they have correspond to the heavier stitch they can sew through. The smaller the number (size 9/70) the lighter the fabric they can go through, like silk! And the higher the number (16/100) the heavier the fabric they can go through, like denim and tweed for example.
Wedge Point Needles are excellent for projects that call for leather or vinyl! These kind of fabrics can easily be damaged with a needle that isn’t suited for this type of job at hand. Not to mention you would probably break a needle in the process! Leather can be pretty tough, and it’s an expensive luxurious fabric you wouldn’t want to damage, so it’s best to use this needle for these fabrics!
Embroidery Needles are perfect for (surprise!) embroidery. They have a wide eye that is well suited for polyester threads to pass through a quilt project, without ruining fabric quality. It can be an excellent way to de-stress, and find a way to decorate most of the items in your closet if you have the time!
Surprise! The last needle is a compass needle. Hopefully this guide has pointed you in the right direction! Say goodbye to breaking needles, and say hello to smooth sailing with your sewing compass and needles. Do you know what needle you’ll use for your next project? Let me know in the comment section below!