NEEDLE KNOWLEDGE

NEEDLE KNOWLEDGE

Metal container for sewing needles from the second half of the 20th century.

Sharps:

Needles used for general hand sewing; built with a sharp point, a round eye, and are of medium length. Those with a double-eyed head are able to carry two strands of thread while minimizing fabric friction.

Appliqué:

These are considered another all-purpose needle for sewing, appliqué, and patch work.

Embroidery:

Also known as crewel needles; identical to sharps but have a longer eye to enable easier threading of multiple embroidery threads and thicker yarns.

Betweens or Quilting:

These needles are shorter than sharps, with a small rounded eye and are used for making fine stitches on heavy fabrics such as in tailoring, quilt making and other detailed handwork; note that some manufacturers also distinguish between quilting needles and quilting between needles, the latter being slightly shorter and narrower than the former.

Milliners:

A class of needles generally longer than sharps, useful for basting and pleating, normally used in millinery work.

Easy- or Self-threading:

Also called calyxeyed sharps, side threading, and spiral eye needles, these needles have an open slot into which a thread may easily be guided rather than the usual closed eye design.

Beading:

These needles are very fine, with a narrow eye to enable them to fit through the centre of beads and sequins along with a long shaft to thread and hold a number of beads at a time.

Bodkin:

Also called ballpoints, this is a long, thick needle with a ballpoint end and a large, elongated eye. They can be flat or round and are generally used for threading elastic, ribbon or tape through casings and lace openings.

Chenille:

These are similar to tapestry needles but with large, long eyes and a very sharp point to penetrate closely woven fabrics. Useful for ribbon embroidery.

Darning:

Sometimes called finishing needles, these are designed with a blunt tip and large eye making them similar to tapestry needles but longer; yarn darners are the heaviest sub-variety.

Doll:

Not designed for hand sewing at all, these needles are made long and thin and are used for soft sculpturing on dolls, particularly facial details.

Leather:

Also known as glovers and as wedge needles, these have a triangular point designed to pierce leather without tearing it; often used on leather-like materials such as vinyl and plastic.

Sailmaker:

Similar to leather needles, but the triangular point extends further up the shaft; designed for sewing thick canvas or heavy leather.

Tapestry:

The large eye on these needles lets them to carry a heavier weight yarn than other needles, and their blunt tip– usually bent at a slight angle from the rest of the needle– allows them to pass through loosely-woven fabric such as embroidery canvas or even-weave material without catching or tearing it; comes in a double-eyed version for use on a mounted frame and with two colors of thread.

Tatting:

These are built long with an even thickness for their entire length, including at the eye, to enable thread to be pulled through the double stitches used in tatting.

Upholstery:

These needles are heavy, long needles that may be straight or curved and are used for sewing heavy fabrics, upholstery work, tufting and for tying quilts; the curved variety is practical for difficult situations on furniture where a straight needle will not work Heavy duty 12″ needles are used for repairing mattresses. Straight sizes: 3″-12″ long, curved: 1.5″-6″ long.

One Response to NEEDLE KNOWLEDGE

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