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6 Types of Sewing Machine Needles

Ever have trouble with a sewing project and after checking your thread, tension and bobbin can’t figure out why? It could be your machine needle. 
 
Many people know that there are different types of thread depending on your project, but did you also know there are different sizes and types of needles to help work with different threads and fabrics?
 
Here’s information on 6 types of machine needles to help you choose a needle for your next project.
 
Universal 
This needle is an all-around general purpose needle.  It has a slightly rounded point and can be used on all wovens and some knits. 
 
Jersey and Stretch
Both of these needle types offer a medium ball point tip. This tip works its way between the interknit yarns without damaging or breaking the knit fibers. The jersey needle is a good choice for knits while the stretch needle works best for knits with a lot of spandex such as swimwear and dancewear fabrics. 
 
Jeans
A jeans needle has a modified medium ball point which helps to get through extra thick woven fabrics including denim, canvas and even quilt layers. This special point helps reduce the possibility of the needle bending or breaking and also helps prevent skipped stitches. 
 
Microtex (also called sharp)
This needle has a very slim and sharp point that is perfect for sewing fabrics such as micro fibre, polyester, silk, pleather and materials with coatings. The special point helps create beautiful topstitching and perfectly straight stitches (which makes it great for quilt piecing).
 
Quilting
A quilting needle has a slightly rounded point with special taper that has been designed especially for machine piecing and quilting. This design allows the needle to penetrate the fabric more easily and helps with eliminating skipped stitches.
 
Specialty Needles
There are a variety of specialty needles that are also worth mentioning. Embroidery and metallic needles have been designed to help protect embroidery and metallic threads from shredding. Topstitch needles have a larger eye that are designed to work well with topstitching and heavier threads. A twin needle using two top threads and one bobbin thread to create a double line of stitching without having to sew around twice. Quick threading needles are all-purpose needles that have a special groove in the side that made threading the needle easier. Leather needles have a special cutting point that help it go through leather and artificial leather fabrics.  This needle should not be used on knit and woven fabrics as the cutting point will cause the fabrics to fray. 
 
Extra Machine Needle Tip
While you should select a needle type depending on the fabric you are working with, the sizes of the needle itself correspond with the type of thread you will be using. So if you are working with a heavier weight thread you will want a larger machine needle and vice versa. A larger size needle will have a larger eye on the needle itself which will accommodate a heavier thread. 
 
 

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