The search for the perfect needle. The following guide is a compilation of needle and thread combinations from a survey of needlework experts.
You will find throughout your stitching and making journey, that you will create new needs and combinations for yourself as you explore the artistic possibilities of needlework. Always have a complete selection of needles on hand so you will be sure to have the right one for every project. When choosing the right needle for your project. We have compiled our top tips for you when selecting the proper needle for your project.
DMC'S TOP NEEDLE SELECTING TIPS
- Needle Sizing: The diameter of the needle you select should always be similar in width to the thread you will be using. For example, if the needle is too narrow, the thread will not pass easily through the needlework fabric, which damages the thread. This is often the cause of fraying and the dreaded fuzzies.
- Needles that are too thick will leave a hole around your finished stitch – which may never go away.
- Needle Tips and Points: The tip or point of the needle you select is based on the type of fabric you will be stitching through. For tightly woven fabrics such as linen and even-weave fabrics, a sharp point is necessary to pierce the fabric as you stitch.
- For Aida or other fabrics where the holes are visible, a blunt tipped needle is used to prevent the tip of the needle from penetrating the fabric where it shouldn’t.
- Needle Eyes: The size of the eye of the needle varies in size according to the type of thread used (thick or thin), or in the case of stranded embroidery floss, how many strands are used in the needle while stitching.
DMC PRO TIP
- Remove the needle from your project when you are not stitching to prevent unsightly holes that can stretch your fabric or even rust over a very long period of time! Store your needles in DMC’s Magnetic Needle Case to protect them and keep them securely in one place.
ABOUT DMC NEEDLES
- Threading your needle takes patience and practice, but we make it easier with a special tool, the DMC Needle Threader. You simply slide the eye of the needle onto the hook, then loop the thread on the hook and pass the hook through the eye of the needle and pull the thread through. View this post for a detailed illustration of how to use DMC's Needle Threader.
- DMC Needles are nickel-plated stainless steel. We also have gold-plated needles for those looking for a little more glam or anyone with a nickel allergy. They are resistant to humidity, body oils, and rust.
The blunt rounded end of a tapestry needle slips easily through the holes of canvas or into the weave of fabric without snagging or piercing. The long oval eye carries more than the usual number of strands of thread. The size number of the tapestry needle corresponds to the size of the eye and the thickness of the needle. The higher the number, the smaller the eye and thinner the needle. You will use Tapestry Needles in needlepoint, bargello and cross stitch projects. The smaller Tapestry Needle size work well with Hardanger and Evenweave fabrics as they slip easily between the weave, helping to count the threads. We also recommend our DMC Tapestry Needle size 13 as our yarn needle to use when sewing your knitted and crochet pieces together. The blunt tip is perfect for joining the yarns together.
THE DMC THREADS TO USE WITH TAPESTRY NEEDLES
TAPESTRY NEEDLES WITH AIDA FABRIC COUNTS
Below is a helpful guide when selecting the proper needle for your cross stitch project with Aida fabric. For more information about working with Aida fabric, view our blog post on selecting the right fabrics for your projects.
- Needle Size 18 - 6 Count Aida Fabric
- Needle Size 20 - 8 Count Aida Fabric
- Needle Size 22 - 11 Count Aida Fabric
- Needle Size 24 - 14 Count Aida Fabric
- Needle Size 26 - 16 Count Aida Fabric
- Needle Size 28 - 18 Count Aida Fabric
Also known as Sharps, these needles have sharp tips that pierce the fabric as you stitch, and larger eyes for accommodating floss and embroidery thread. Embroidery Needles have two great advantages - a long eye for easy threading with multiple strands and a very sharp point which will pierce close-woven fabrics. You will find these needles rivaled only by Tapestry Needles for their variety of uses. Embroidery needles can be used for surface embroidery, smocking, cutwork and crazy quilt embroidery.
THE DMC THREADS TO USE WITH EMBROIDERY NEEDLES
Chenille needles are sharp-pointed and long-eyed like Embroidery Needles but run only in the upper size range like Tapestry Needles. They are slightly shorter than Embroidery Needles and the longer These needles are similar to an embroidery needle, but are available in the higher size ranges. The needles are also slightly shorter in length with wider, longer eyes.
A chenille needled is ideal for working with wool threads, such as for crewel embroidery, or for projects using chunkier threads.
THE DMC THREADS TO USE WITH CHENILLE NEEDLES
These needles are longer and more slender than all other types of needles and have a small eye. Running and darning stitch projects commonly use this type of needle, as the longer needle length is helpful for this type of embroidery. This is especially true with Swedish Weaving or decorative darning, when you may have several running stitches on the needles at any given time. Darners are ideally suited to running stitch and darning darning stitch embroideries. You can use Yarn Darners for heavy finishing jobs such as sewing buttons through cushions.
THE DMC THREADS TO USE WITH DARNERS
Also known as Betweens, these are narrow, sharp needles with a small eye that are slightly stubbier (shorter) than other types of sharp needles. The needles are small enough to give a sense of control when taking multiple stitches while quilting, and are ideal for hand quilting and hand appliqué. The small eye prevents any extra bump at the head of the needle.
THE DMC THREADS TO USE WITH QUILTING NEEDLES
DMC beading needles are very skinny needles with tiny eyes, so that the needle can pass through the small opening in beads. Use these needles when adding beads to your needlework and sewing projects.
Lastly, DMC also offers plastic craft needles. These needles are perfect for children's craft projects. Plastic canvas with Tapestry Wool, perforated felt and foam kids sewing projects etc.
There you have it! Please reference this guide when selecting the needles for your next project.