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Thread: Needles - what is the difference?

  1. #1

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    Joann's is having a sale - 50% off of the Notions Wall. I thought this would be a perfect time to stock up on notions! Threads - got some and will try them out. I've been using LQS thread but love the 50% off prices better. Needles -I went to the sewing department (by the sewing machines) and found some packaged needles in the size I need. Put some in my cart today and bought them. Then remembered I forgot something in the QUILTING section and went back in. There on the quilting rack were needles in the cute little plastic cases.

    SO... what is the different between sewing needles and quilting needles? The size of the needles appear to be the same - numbers are the same anyway. Is there a difference or are they just packaged differently?

    Singer - "Universal Regular Point Needles" is what I bought in the sewing department. I also got "Universal Heavy Duty Needles" for denim.

    Generally speaking - I am using my machine for quilting.

  2. #2
    Super Member AlwaysQuilting's Avatar
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    I don't know myself but here's a chart that might give you the answer.
    http://www.sewing.org/files/guidelin...dle_charts.pdf

  3. #3
    Super Member Jan in VA's Avatar
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    Are the "cute little plastic cases" of needles Schmetz brand by chance?

    I prefer this brand in many different sizes and uses over all others. In general I machine piece my quilts with Schmetz Universal 80/12 or 75/11. There is also a Schmetz "Quilting" needle which I use for machine quilting the layers together.

    This book, newly back in print, is the definitive article on needles. http://pointwelltakenbook.com/

    Jan in VA

  4. #4
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    There really is not much difference between sewing and quilting machine needles. I also use Schmetz 80/12, top stitching needles and sharps needles. Schmetz come in a bigger variety that Singer. Schmetz is the brand that my LQS carries. I usually try to stock up when Joann's has a sale.

  5. #5
    Super Member eparys's Avatar
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    My favorite point of reference that I always send people to is

    http://www.threadsmagazine.com/item/...es-an-overview

    Threads Magazine shows a pic of each, what is "special" about each, how it is commonly used and a short section on trouble shooting.

  6. #6
    Super Member tjradj's Avatar
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    The brand isn't the most important thing.
    If you only ever use the same thread, and the same quality of fabric, you don't have to change the size of your needle much.
    If you sew heavier fabrics and find the thread is breaking a lot or shredding, go to a thicker needle, like a 14. Sometimes just by making a bigger hole, it gives the thread enough time to do it's job and not shred.
    If you are using a heavier weight thread, you'll want something with a bigger eye, like a topstitch needle. That way the thread won't shred going through the eye. You'll also have to use a large eye for metallic or monofilament threads or they will break.
    It may depend on how you sew as well. If you stitch on the slower side, you can probably get away with a thinner needle. But if you're like me, a "pedal to the metal" sewer, then a larger size is better.
    It's basically trial and error. If you're having problems, and it isn't the thread, then it might be the needle.

  7. #7
    Super Member quiltmaker's Avatar
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