Friday, 8 March 2013

FMQ: Needles

Free Motion Quilting is such fun, but only if it works!

To get machine quilting smoothly there are a few things to make sure you have.

The first step is the right needles.

Sewing machine needles are all different and have different uses - jean needles for jeans, leather needles for leather... get the idea?

So don't start FMQ without getting the right needles.

But which ones do you need?

I love using 2 different ones: Quilting Needles and Titanium Topstitch Needles.

Quilting Needles from The Eclectic Maker
Quilting needles have a slim, tapered point and thicker shaft for going through multiple layers so are perfect for going through a quilt. These needles work through the layers smoothly and I keep the tension on my machine at 4-4.5.

They don't last long though, maybe 8 hours before they need replacing - you will know because your machine will skip stitches. 8 hours fly by once you start FMQ on a quilt, believe me!

Titanium Needles from Simply Solids
The Titanium Needles are super strong and last longer than the quilting needles. They are perfect for FMQ because they larger eye and deeper groove so they slip through the 3 layers.

I do find I need to loosen off the tension a little bit when I use these needles so make sure you need to test on a practice piece before you start work on your quilt.

The titanium needles are expensive in comparison to the quilting needles, but are worth it because they last much longer.

Hope this helps!

On Tuesday we will look at threads!


  1. Thanks for this Anna. may finally get my first quilt finished with your tips.