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Conversational Threads

Needles and threads

lizziesews | Posted in General Discussion on

I’ve gone back over a year, and have found no questions similar to mine.  Is there a source, book, web address, etc. for all the types of threads,  needles, and combinations thereof, and what are the best ones to use for different fabrics?  I’ve looked on the web but can only find information on whatever that particular company makes.


  1. sewchris703 | | #1

    Are you asking about sewing machine needles?  Threads has an online article about the different sewing machine needles, what each one is for, etc.  https://www.threadsmagazine.com/item/3752/sewing-machine-needles-an-overview


    1. lizziesews | | #2

      i'm interested in all kinds of needles and threads.  i'm going to be doing hand and machine sewing on fine wool, silk, knit, etc.  i know silk thread for silk fabric, and ball-point needles for knits, but not much more than that.  for instance, when are synthetic threads best? 


      1. krichmond | | #4

        needles and threads

        There is a book called 'Claire Shaeffer's Fabric Sewing Guide'.  I have a copy and find it quite comprehensive (it's about an inch-and-a-half thick). I think it might be what you're looking for.  Each fabric is described and recommendations given for thread preference, needle type and size - as well as suggested stitch length and perhap machine tension (?).  There may be more useful tidbits, but I can't remember as I haven't cracked the book in a while and it's a little buried behind some fresh stash.  If you would like more info about it though, just e-mail me and I can do a little archeological excavation.



  2. lizziesews | | #3


    thank you everyone.  i haven't checked all the addresses yet, but i will.  however, i found a very good article in a back issue - september 2004, number 114.  our weavers guild has issues going back many many years and i've been checking them out 10 at a time. 


  3. HelgaPataki | | #5

    needles for woven vs knits

    I use either or, depending on what look I want.  I was taught that a ball point needle doesn't pierce the yarn or thread and rather, it rolls into the gap between the threads.  this will cause your stitching to look slightly irregular. I don't mind this because I find home sewing to look too neat and sometimes I want something more casual.  If you sew with a pointed tipped needle, it could pierce your yarn and cause your fabric to pucker.  you have to keep in mind the gauge of the needle as well or the sewing holes will be too large and your cloth will look perforated.  this is especially so with rayons.  My rayons can get perforated and rip like paper.

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