Types Of Needles For Sewing Machine:
For beginners, how to identify sewing machine needles is a common question. There are various types of needles for various purposes, but the parts of a sewing machine needle differ in their construction. This post is an overview and check out more elaborated sewing needles codes definitions etc on types of needles for sewing machines.
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. Different Types of Needles for Different Fabric. Regular Point Needle (Sharp): Universal Point Needle: Ball Point Needle: Embroidery Needles: Quilting Needles: Topstitching Needle: Wedge point Needle etc… Whether sewing by hand or machine, you will find that there are sewing needles for every task.
Here’s the anatomy of sewing machine needle to identify it better.
- Shank: The shank is the head of the needle that sits into your sewing machine socket. Set the flat side to the back.
- Blade: The blade determines the needle size. We’ll look into needle sizes further in this post.
- Shaft: The shaft is the body of the needle which has an eye at the end to run the thread through.
- The point varies according to the type of the needle based on usage.
Types of needles:
There are different types of needles for different types of materials. The needles differ in shape at the tip. Types of needles, how they work, what they are used for etc… You should select the types of needles based on the type of textile (i.e. knit vs. woven)
Selecting the correct needle for your project is just as important as selecting the fabric, thread, and stabilizer. The different sizes and types of needles are as follows.
The point is slightly rounded. Very good for woven fabrics like cotton. It is sharp for knits and good for woven fabrics.
This needle is good for knits. It is rounded point slightly such that the needle passes between the fabric threads rather than pierce them. Also suitable for heavy knits and spandex.
It has a tapered point designed for thick layers and intersecting seams. This is the best choice for perfect machine quilting. Quilting Needles can also be used for piecing.
This needle has a sharp point and narrow shaft for piercing wovens. Suitable for finely woven fabric like chintz, silk, lightweight faux suede, and microfiber. Also great for heirloom sewing or any other type of topstitching.
The leather needles have a wedge-shaped point which is ideal for sewing leather, suede, vinyl, heavy faux suede, and thick non-woven fabric. This needle leaves permanent holes. Avoid backstitch so that the fabric doesn’t get perforated. Instead, tie the thread ends. Not for use with knits.
Denim Needles have a sharp point and strong shaft. These needles can stitch through many layers without breaking. Use on heavy, tightly woven fabric, like denim, canvas, and duck.
It has an extra large eye, large groove, and sharp point for heavy decorative threads, embroidery thread, or 2even two strands of all-purpose thread.
These needles are for lightweight knits such as Silk Jersey, Lycra, or anything with high elasticity. For these fabrics a ballpoint needle may skip stitches, so switch to stretch needle.
These are specifically designed for Overlock machines. It has sharp point and used on all fabrics.
These are needles for machine embroidery, when sewn with Rayon, Acrylic, or speciality threads.
It has an extra large eye, large groove scarf, and sharp point which goes well with monofilament and metallic thread. This needle must be used when sewing metallic thread.
It has flared ‘wings’ on each side of the shaft. Used for heirloom and decorative stitches on Batiste and linen.
It has a single shaft connecting two needles. This needle is used when the sewer wants perfectly parallel stitches. Usually seen on jeans and decorative stitching.
This needle only comes as a universal needle. Just like the Twin needle, the Triple needle has a single shaft connecting three needles. The machine must be Triple needle capable.
This needle is most commonly used for free motion sewing, embroidery, and monogramming. the wire coiled shaft acts as a presser foot to depress and release the fabric. Only available in universal, stretch, and quilting.
Sewing Machine Needle Sizes:
After you’ve identified the sewing machine needle, what puzzles you are, are sewing machine needles universal. Well, No! there are different sizes and colours for different materials to sew.
What size sewing machine needle for cotton/ satin is a question after you’ve ruined your lightweight satin by stitching it with a wrong sewing needle. For example, a size 75 needle has a blade that is .75 mm in diameter.
Here’s a table with the fabric types with suitable needle types and sizes. The fabric types include cotton, linen, silk, wool, synthetic, rayon, blends and listed in the order of weight.
|Fabric Type||Machine Needle Type||Machine Needle Size|
|Sheer to lightweight: Batiste, Chiffon, Georgette, Organza, Voile and all microfiber or micro denier fabrics.||Regular Point||9/70 or 11/80|
|Lightweight: Challis, Chambray, Charmeuse, Crepe de Chine, Gauze, Handkerchief Linen, Silk, Taffeta, Tissue Faille.||Regular Point||11/80|
|Medium-weight: Broadcloth, Brocade, Chino, Chintz, Corduroy, Flannel, Linen, Poplin, Satin, Synthetic Suedes, Taffeta, Terry, Velvet||Regular Point||14/90|
|Medium to Heavy-weight: Coating, Damask, Drapery Fabric, Fake Fur, Gabardine, Ticking, Woolens||Regular Point||16/100 or 18/110|
|Denim and Canvas||Denim/Jeans||16/100|
|Sheer to Lightweight Knits: Jersey, Single Knit, Spandex, Tricot||Ball Point||10/70 or 12/80|
|Medium to Heavy-weight Knits: Double Knit, Sweatshirt, Sweater Knit||Ball Point||14/90|
|Speciality Fabrics: Leather, Suede, Buckskin||Wedge Point||14/90 or 16/100|
90/14 – Mid-heavy fabrics, like Corduroy, raw Silks, bottom weight fabric.
100/16 – Heavy fabrics, like Denim and Duck Cloth.
110/18 – For Very Heavy Fabric, like Canvas or tapestry.
120/19 – Heaviest Fabrics, like luggage handles and boat canvas.
Sewing Machine Needles Color Codes:
And what do the colors on sewing machine needles mean? Here’s a picture with details of sewing machine needles color codes.
Singer Number And Color Codes
Singer colors and numbers its needles with the following system of codes to indicate the needlepoint type and shaft size:
|Code And Shank Color||Needle Point Type|
|2000 – uncolored||a chromium-coated regular point, for high-speed embroidery stitching|
|2020 – red||a regular point, for woven fabrics (most common Singer needle type)|
|2022, 2053, 2054 – uncolored||overlock needles, only for overlocking machines|
|2044 – uncolored||embroidery needle|
|2045 – yellow||ballpoint, for knits|
|2026 – blue||a heavy-duty point, for denims|
|2032 – brown||chisel or wedge point, for leathers|
|2025 – uncolored||twin needles|
|2040 – uncolored||hemstitch or wing-needle, for “heirloom” or decorative sewing, best on woven cottons and linens|
|Shoulder color||Shaft size|
Kenmore color codes
Kenmore colors its needles with a different system of color codes which indicate the needle’s size:
|Shank color||Shaft size||Shaft size (Europe)|
Schmetz color codes
The colored band on some types of Schmetz needles indicates the needle type.
The types of needles are varied in the shape of the point for different materials and the shaft that fits into the required type of sewing machine.