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Thread: Topstitching???

  1. #1
    Senior Member DonnaFreak's Avatar
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    Topstitching???

    Howdy y'all :c)

    On several quilting shows I've seen, and even on this forum, I have heard/read about topstitching and using a topstitching needle. But when I look at needles at quilt shops, I don't see anything that specifies a topstitching needle. Is there some other name they go by other than a topstitching needle? Also.....exactly what is the difference between topstitching and just regular sewing seams on a quilt? And what is the difference between a topstitching needle and any other kind? Hope this isn't a super dumb question, but I'm stumped on this one. Thanks in advance for your help! :c)

    Donna
    DonnaFreak

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  2. #2
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    Thanks for asking the question. I will be watching this post to see what is said. BrendaK
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  3. #3
    Super Member Lisa_wanna_b_quilter's Avatar
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    http://www.pinkchalkstudio.com/blog/...tching-needle/


    Here is some interesting information as well as photos. I'm not entirely certain I really understand it yet, but it's a start.

  4. #4
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    If you click on "needles" in this link, you should find lots of info:
    https://www.superiorthreads.com/education/

  5. #5
    Power Poster MadQuilter's Avatar
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    I believe that superior threads has a video series to talk about thread and needles. In it, the presenter states that many quilters only use the topstitch needle for ALL parts of quilting.

    Not sure about using the topstitch as a process in quilting though.
    Martina
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  6. #6
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    Look through the information at Superior (link in one of the posts above) I think that they have the best information.

    My understanding is that a lot of quilters have gone to the Top Stitch needle as it has a little larger eye - read that "since it is larger it will be easier to thread". The needle size isn't any different between a regular needle and a top stitch - just the eye. That being said the other big difference in needles is the type: Sharp/Quilting/Top Stitch and Jeans needles are all "sharps", Ball Point are for knits and Universals are a combination of ballpoint/sharp. In piecing and free motion quiltiing I prefer a "sharp"

  7. #7
    Super Member snipforfun's Avatar
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    I buy topstitching needles at Joanns all the time. They are in green packaging

  8. #8
    Super Member Buckeye Rose's Avatar
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    But....what is the difference between topstitching and quilting?

  9. #9
    Super Member feline fanatic's Avatar
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    Here is another good link to educate yourself about needles

    http://www.schmetzneedles.com/learni...ut-needles.htm

  10. #10
    Super Member feline fanatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buckeye Rose View Post
    But....what is the difference between topstitching and quilting?
    Top stitching is often done in purse and clothing assembly. It is stitching that purposely shows on the surface of the article/garment so the stitching should look its best. Not much difference between a quilting needle and a topstitch needle.

    Basically they are both super sharp needles as opposed to a universal which has a blunter point. The topstitch as an enlarged eye and groove to accomodate larger threads traditionally used in topstitching which is usually going through several layers.

    The quilting needles apparently do not have the enlarged groove and eye. This is most likely why so many recommend a top stitch because it can accomodate heavier threads.

  11. #11
    Senior Member batikmystique's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by feline fanatic View Post
    Top stitching is often done in purse and clothing assembly. It is stitching that purposely shows on the surface of the article/garment so the stitching should look its best. Not much difference between a quilting needle and a topstitch needle.

    Basically they are both super sharp needles as opposed to a universal which has a blunter point. The topstitch as an enlarged eye and groove to accomodate larger threads traditionally used in topstitching which is usually going through several layers.

    The quilting needles apparently do not have the enlarged groove and eye. This is most likely why so many recommend a top stitch because it can accomodate heavier threads.

    Thank you for this answer. I must say I was stumped with this also. I usually use sharps for piecing and quilting, and use standard size thread, so I never really was aware of top stitching needles. I've never made any quilts which would require thicker thread either, but I could see how this would be beneficial for those who use flannel or thicker fabrics in making their quilts or are adding some kind of special embellishment.
    Creative clutter is better than idle neatness.

  12. #12
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    I use titanium coated topstitch needles for all my piecing and machine quilting. 70 or 80 size for piecing when using thin thread, 90 when using 3 ply or 50 wt or heavier thread. And they all come in the green package, never thought about the color package before. I order them from Superior when they have a sale. They last a very long time.
    Got fabric?

  13. #13
    Super Member ghostrider's Avatar
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    The definition of topstitching is "Make a row of continuous stitches on the top or right side of a garment or other article as a decorative feature". The seams on jeans are topstitched for example. When related to quilting, it is basically the same as echo or shadow quilting.
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  14. #14
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    I don't think Topstitch needles are the same as doing topstitching.
    Got fabric?

  15. #15
    Super Member ghostrider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BellaBoo
    I don't think Topstitch needles are the same as doing topstitching.
    One of the questions asked by the OP was : "Also.....exactly what is the difference between topstitching and just regular sewing seams on a quilt?"

    The original purpose of topstitch needles was (and still is) for topstitching; they had nothing to do with quilting. The larger eye, longer groove and sharper point were made to accomodate the heavier topstitch threads used for garments (they also work well with perle cotton #8, #12 and #16 on quilts).
    The Earth without art is just "Eh".

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