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In the world of embroidery, we come across different kinds and types of works. Many of them are done with different kinds of fabrics and must be used with different kinds of needles to work on them. 

Different kinds of designs and patterns (not all) require different types or sizes of needle. The size is a big factor when it come to variation in type of fabric you are using for your embroidery project.

Here are the different factors to keep in mind for choosing the perfect set of needles for your embroidery work-

1. SIZE 

For embroidery works, sizes starting from 1 to 16 are the appropriate ranges for doing the stitching with bare hands. It must be noted that the needle sizes for hand embroidery and machine works are almost the same, but cannot be used for each other. You should also take note that, the higher the number hence, the smaller size the needle is.


It depends on the chosen textile if how thick your needle will be. Make sure to test your needle if it can penetrate to the fabric without any difficulty. 


Usually, the length and width are related to each other. If the width is thick, it is expected that the length will be longer and vice versa. Generally, when we sew the fabric, we insert the needle multiple times and pull it out in an instant so that it will create stitches in parallel dash lines.


Point is the sharp edge(side) of the needle. This part of the needle should be very firm and strong. More sharm and tougher it is, the easier it is to sew through different kinds of fabric. 

5. EYE

Eye is the non pointed side of the needle. It is an important factor to determine before choosing a needle for a particular needle work. There are three sizes of needle eye- small, medium, and large. The small size was normally used for standard sewing, while the large size usually appears like an elongated hole that is normally used for thick fabrics such as leather. And accordingly the medium size is used with suitability with different embroidery threads, fabric and projects


1. Milliner needle

Milliner needles are also called as Straw needles. These needles have small and round eye. The body width is similar to that of the eye. The tips are sharp. Milliner needles are commonly used of sizes ranging from 1 to 10, but they are also found in other sizes.

Milliner needles are ideal for any type of stitch, and are found in common household day to day tasks. 

2. Chenille needle

Chenille needles have longer eyes, shaft size is little smaller than the eye size, has a sharp tip, and the lengle of these needles are small. 

Chenille needles come in sizes 13 – 28. Chenille needles are used in surface embroidery, crewel embroidery, chenille embroidery, and any time you want a large, long eye to accommodate your thread, and a sharp tip to pierce your fabric.

3. Tapestry Needles

Tapestry needles have a long eye, a shaft slightly thinner than the eye, the eye bulges slightly at the top of the needle, and the unique feature – a blunt tip. Tapestry needles come in sizes 13-28. They are used primarily for counted thread work (cross stitch, blackwork) and needlepoint, or any needlework on fabric or canvas that has open holes that determine where each stitch is placed.

4. Crewel needles

Crewel needles are also called “embroidery” needles. Crewel needles have a medium-long eye, a shaft slightly thinner than the eye and the eye bulges slightly at the top of the shaft, and a sharp tip. Crewel needles come in sizes 1-12. 

They are generally used for surface embroidery, crewel work, goldwork, whitework, and practically any embroidery technique that requires a sharp needle. Their sharp tip makes them good for piercing tightly woven ground fabric and their slightly longer eye holds embroidery threads of various weights.

5. Gold plated needles.

Many of the needles listed above are available in gold plated sets. These needles can be used by people who suffer from nickel allergies, as almost all of the needles have a layer of nickel alloy of nickel. Also by those, whose natural body oils tend to discolor needles. The difficulty with these needles is that you have to replay them time to time, as the gold plating wears out. 

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