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Sewing machine needles are the workhorses of sewing. Depending on how fast you sew, a needle may pass through the fabric many hundreds of times in an hour. Understanding the needle is essential for trouble-free sewing and good results. In this How To we will learn all about needles, their different parts, the different sizing systems, and how to make them work for you, not against you. Knowledge is power!!

Technique Materials

Needles

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  • Missing

    Jul 19, 2011, 04.53 AMby despoticaivy

    I might be dense, but is it “approproate” or “appropriate” ? I haven’t heard the word ‘approproate’ before, so if I’m mistaken on an inside sewing joke, sorry! :)

  • Missing

    Jan 1, 2009, 04.51 AMby sweet-saboo

    There’s a very handy notion called the “needletrak” (made by a company called ‘The Quilted Ribbon’), which is a small plastic square chart listing 9 categories of machine needle types, with a moveable plastic arrow that you place on the type of needle that you’ve put in your machine. If you tend to jump from one project to another, it’s nice to be able to determine at a quick glance, what type of needle is in the machine, without having to remove it & squint at it through a magnifying glass!

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    Dec 9, 2008, 01.30 PMby lookingpast

    This is good information—especially the reminder to change needles with each project! I’ve got the sizing down, finally, but still have questions about the HA x 1 and 15 × 1. What do those mean?

  • Missing

    Nov 6, 2008, 11.01 AMby coie1

    Hi and thanks to all the very helpful contributors on this site. Just a hint from over 40 eyes. (truth be told seeing the size of a machine needle has been a life long challenge) I put them in a extra holder that has no cover then run the whole thing through my scanner. I can then + to magnify the stamped on size until I can read it. Hope this is helpful.

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    Jun 16, 2008, 11.07 PMby carolinewah

    i’m not sure if that’s what they mean. from my understanding, they’re saying that you should change your needle according to what fabric you’re using.

  • Missing

    Apr 25, 2008, 07.40 PMby juliyaf

    wow, ideally you should start a new needle with each project? holy smokes that’s a lot of needles. i hate changing thread, i can’t imagine changing needles every time too.

    thank you for the how to, i never knew what those numbers meant.

    • This is a question
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