How To Identify Sewing Machine Needles

Before you start sewing, you need to be aware of the parts of the machine and its function. Take your time to know the various parts, how to adjust them to suit the different types of fabric. People usually neglect learning the parts of the machine when they learn how to sew, however, this may prove to become problematic when they start facing issues with the machine parts while sewing.

The needle, which is one of the most neglected parts of the sewing machine is an essential accessory. You should note that they are different types of needle, and they differ base on the kind of material they can suitably handle. To sew effectively, always check that your needle has not been broken or worn out.

How to Identify Sewing Machine Needles

Identify Sewing Machine Needles

You should understand that there are different types and sizes of the needle, and it is essential to know how to identify these various needle types. When you know the various types of needle, the knowledge will be suitable in choosing the perfect needle for suitable fabric. And this will further make your experience in sewing more pleasant. The needle size may be determined by the thickness and the weight of the fabric for sewing.

Does the type of needles used affect the quality of stitches?

Before you get to know the types of needles, get familiar with the various parts of a sewing needle as stated below. For it is from the parts that you can determine the type of needle, the size, and it’s suitability for some material. Know the parts of the needle and their differences:

Parts of a Sewing Machine Needle

  1. The shank, which is the uppermost part of the sewing machine needle to fits into the sewing machine. This part of the needle is flat and it is the safer side of the needle to handle, and it fits into the machine needle handlers. They can fit into any of the machines for they are standard size.
  2. The blade is a part of the needle that is used to determine the size of the needle. For once you heard that a blade is 75 size means that the blade is .75 mm in diameter. And the blade can be handled safely, just being below the shank of the needle.
  3. And the body of the needle is known as the shaft, taking up a length of the whole needle. The shaft has a groove that runs through it. The groove is where the thread of the needle passes through and sinking the thread in the material when you are sewing.
  4. The point which is also known as the tip of the needle is the extreme end to the shank. Also, the point determines the size, shapes, and length of the needle and it is the point through which the threads are drawn through the materials.
  5. The scarf is the part of the needle that is open, and it makes the proper connection with the bobbin under the sewing machine. And this drives the thread down through the materials, making fine stitches.

Now that you have seen the various types of needles, you can now compare the difference. Get the types of sewing machine needles, study the various parts, and get to know their similarity and differences.

Types of Sewing Machine Needles

There are three different types of needle commonly known. These machine needles are different based on their functions and suitable fabrics they can be used on. The different types of needles include:

  • The universal needle

This is the most common type of needle, and it has rounded tips, which make it suitable for use in woven and stronger materials. They can penetrate sturdy material easily making fine stitches and make it easy to sew effortlessly.

  • The jersey needle

These types of needle have been designed specifically for knit fiber. For it does not damage this material. One of the common features you will find about this needle type is that they have ballpoint tips.

Sewing Machine Needles

  • The stretch needle

This is the perfect needle for elastic and stretchy material and they are differentiated from the Jersey needle because of their eyes and scarf. Otherwise, both are similar because they have ballpoint tips. These elastic materials can be difficult to handle using the wrong needle types, making the sewing pretty rough.

The above are the main common types of machine needles. You can start sewing knowing these main types of needle. There are other uncommon classifications of needle types, but these ones are suitable for anyone.

How to Know More About Needle

It is advised that you know much about the needle before you start using them as a tailor. Most people have been sewing with little knowledge of the kind of needles, and how it affects the clothes they are sewing. There are various ways to acquire knowledge about a needle.

Using the internet

  • Using the internet

The internet is a huge source of information, and for those who have access can learn more about machine needles. On the internet, you can find articles, videos, blogs of machine brands that help in discussions of related topics that would be of help to these people using the machine. You can easily search for the various machine needle type and get knowledge about the kind of materials they are suitable for in sewing

  • Ask those that are experienced

One way of learning how to use the various types of sewing machines is through the knowledge of experienced and knowledgeable people. They have in-depth knowledge due to their years of sewing and have found the use of the various needle types. To the ordinary eyes, there is not much difference between the needle type. But for someone who has used these needles for years, they can understand the need for this knowledge.

When learning under people with such experience, they will let you know such details and how it will help you become a better tailor.

Reading manuals

  • Reading manuals

It has been encouraged that you take every advantage you have to know about your machine parts. Read manuals about sewing machines and their parts. In some of these manuals, you will find some of this information. They will be useful to you as an amateur or professional tailor.

Use the above resources, and get to add to your knowledge with the experience you gain as you go on. It will be helpful to pass this knowledge as it will help you know more about machine needles.

As we have mentioned, people do not know much about the needle. Being one of the least thought about parts of the machine, some might leave a needle on the machine for long, as it becomes brittle and breaks off. The machine needle has one of the shortest spans of life in the machine.

The needle should not be used for more than eight hours and should be changed as often as possible. They become brittle when they are left on the machine for too long. It is not expensive to change your needle regularly, for they are quite cheap.

Related Questions

Does the type of needles used affect the quality of stitches?

Yes, it is not all needles that are suitable or all types of fabrics. Sturdy fabric will need thicker needles than soft fabrics.

Should I change my needle with each new project?

Should I change my needle with each new project?

It is best to change the needle with each new task. The needle has a very short lifespan which most of us are not aware of.


Hello, I am Jessica Flores, and you are welcome to my website. I am a professional fashion designer and a seamstress. I always carried a passion for craftwork. My love for craft grew along with time. I have spent years researching and practicing in this field to gather colossal experience.

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