Apr 12, 2013

Needles, part 2

Greetings.  Thank you all for such great responses regarding your needles.  I've been investigating a little further because of the other problem I've had in the last year ~ the floss sticks in the eye when I try to slide the needle closer to the end of the thread, like it's snagged on something.  Now I know why.  A size 28 needle is meant for high count linen (36-45) which requires a single strand.  I'm sticking a double strand in for my 28 count which is too much thread in that size eye, but OK for the correct size needle such as 24 or 26 for 30/32 count. Using such a thin needle on my rough linen may also account for my floss sometimes shredding.  The purpose of the needle size is to spread the fiber just enough to allow the thread to pass smoothly.  Well if my needle is too thin for the fabric, the thread is probably coming in contact with the linen fibers each and every time it passes.  I came to the conclusion that the coarse linens I prefer are the reason the gold and platinum needles didn't last long at all.  They are probably like sandpaper on the needle and wore the finish off quickly.  I've received needles from shops when purchasing linen or charts but never paid attention to the size, which I will do from now on.  For those of you interested in more information about needles, my favorite site for stitch videos,  Mary Corbet's Needle 'n Thread, also has informative articles on various needles and manufacturers.  Click  to be directed to her index page of numerous posts, including her article on Bohin.  She mentions in The Broken Needle post about a possible change in quality in the John James and her journey trying to find where they are now made.  August 2011 lists 5 things you need to know about embroidery needles.  Her site is loaded with great information regarding needlework and I am grateful that she has taken the time to share her knowledge with us.
I also want to mention a website that many of you are familiar with, but once again, it's new to me. 
The site is Gazette94.   When I saw this post from Kaye, I read the comments and sure enough, Terri had the answer for us as to where to find that great bird chart. Well geez, where have I been? What an array of free designs.   Santa, snowmen, houses, quaker, holiday, everything!  I'll need to spend some time browsing and maybe find a few more to add to the file of never-to-be.  It's like buying something I don't need only because I have a coupon.  Make a copy of the chart and add it to the pile because it's free.  Putz.

That's all folks!  Have a great weekend - and thanks again for your input!
I appreciate your visits and comments and want to welcome the new followers.

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16 comments:

Deb~Paxton Valley Folk Art said...

I am learning so much from you Marly, I am new to stitching and had never even contemplated what size or make of needle to use, just grabbed the one closest to me in my pinkeep! Thanks for all of the information and links and off to check out the new patterns to add to the (never going to be stitched) pile :O) Deb

Margaret said...

Very interesting. I want to see what Mary Corbett has to say about the John James needles. I hadn't realized until my LNS owner said that that they weren't made in the UK anymore. Awful awful.

Barb said...

Thanks so much for the needle info.At a LNS I was told that the John James needles are now being made in China! Not sure.

butterfly said...

Thank you for where to find the needle info, hugs.

busyhands said...

Thank you for the tips on needles! Really interesting
Happy weekend
Elena

Dirty Martini Queen said...

Wow as a stitcher for over 25 years, I never gave my needles any thought. I used the wrong needles for years until I started working on linen then I switched to JJ petites for EVERYTHING! I probably won't change my habits because as we've discussed the "proper" way to stitch isn't the only way to stitch. But when newcomers to sure to refer them to the correct techniques. Now the change of JJ to China sources may make me rethink when I need to buy new needles but I have such a stash they may be made back in UK before I need replacements.
Donna

Nan ~ Threadwork Primitives said...

Very good info Marly and as always you are very informative. I too use a #28 John James petite needle for everything and have never noticed a problem with the snag issue. I have a good supply, since it's my absolute favorite, and I don't think I will change. If it's not broke....
kind of thing. Smiles, Nan

Elisabetta said...

A really interesting reading... I forget to tell that I use Bohin's 24 in 30 o 32 ct linen using 2 threads and 26 stitching in a 40 ct linen with 1 thread. I don't use q-snaps or sewing frame and
I embroidery faster with a needle full-bodied !

Jo who can't think of a clever nickname said...

When you use two stands, are you threading two separate strands into the needle so there is a tail which means the needle is pulling four strands of thread through the hole? This is quite wearing on the thread if you're using a small needle.
If you use the secured needle method of threading one long strand through the needle and stitching with the needle in the middle of the thread length then the needle is only pulling two thicknesses of that'd through each hole.
I find I can use petite needles on all fabrics using this method and it's better for my thread too.
It doesn't work for variegated threads though because you muddy the variations.

backporchcarver said...

Wow, so much useful info for the novice.Thanks to all of you and thanks Marly.You have so much useful info on your blog.

Merry Wind Farm said...

Hi, Marly,
Thanks for all the interesting info. I use Lance tapestry needles from Wyndham needleworks, which are $4 for a package of 12. I am usually stitching with dmc, on counts of 32 to 35.
Melinda

Kaisievic said...

Thanks for the links to the needle info and I am so glad that I have helped you find the wonderful free patterns on Gazette 94. She is very talented, isn't she?

Chocolates4Breakfast (TerriBoog) said...

Great info, Marly! I seem to go thru needles like crazy. Maybe I need to pay more attention!

Maggie said...

Good information, I tend not to pay too much attention to needles either,I have to have a read of the links you posted. Although i do only use Peacemaker needles now, they are lovely and last a lot longer than the John James.

Gazette 94 does have some lovely free charts, but as you say, you print them and don't seem to get around to stitching them!

Chris said...

Thanks for all the needle info :)
So glad you found gazette 94. Such a fabulous and generous designer!!

Georgie said...

This blog was wonderful! My stitches have been really angry lately... I have always used a 26 but recently starting using a 28. Hopefully going back to a 26 will help. I use Bohin needles...think they are great!
Thank you so much for the information.

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