What kind of needles do you use?

When I first started quilting I always used a 70/10 Universal needle for piecing, which was economical and worked great for simple patterns. When I started taking on more complicated patterns with smaller pieces, curves and more corners to match I switched to using 70/10 Sharp needles. The sharp needles stitch in a perfectly straight line, allowing for very precise piecing. I've always used an 80/12 Universal for machine quilting.

There is a drawback to using Sharp needles, though - I've noticed that some of the quilts I've pieced with 70/10 Sharps are showing more wear around the seams than those I've pieced with 70/10 Universals. Sometimes the Sharp needles actually pierce threads in the fabric, rather than separating and stitching between the fabric threads. After a couple years and dozens of washes the quilts I pieced with Sharps have a few small holes around the seams. Boo!

I recently tried a package of Quilting needles from Schmetz - they come in sizes 75/11 and 90/14. I've used the 75/11 for piecing and so far they are working well - they sew in a pretty straight, although not perfectly straight, line and don't pierce the threads of the fabric. I haven't finished the quilt top yet, but when I do I'll try the 90/14 needles for quilting.

What kind of needles do you choose for piecing and quilting?

1 comment:

  1. I use universal 80/12 for piecing and topstitch 90/14 for quilting, though I might have to try the smaller needle for piecing.

    It must be the thread I am using, but I can only get a decent stitch with that giant eyed topstitch needle for quilting. Anything smaller and my machine skips stitches like crazy.


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