If your sewing machine needles are letting you down, it's time to find the exact needle size and type to suit your latest project. Although the wide range of sewing machine needle variations out there is nothing new to the experienced stitcher, many machine users are still unaware of how precisely you can tailor a specific needle to your chosen requirements.

From sharpness to thickness and even speciality, Ajanta Studios will guide you through the most commonly used, useful and bespoke sewing needles to help give your crafting creations the best ever finish.

What Is The Most Commonly Used Sewing Needle Size?

The most common size of needle used in sewing is the 80/12 size ,and following that, the most popular needle sizes are the 50, 60, 70, 80, 90 and 100 sizes. Our Hemline Jeans Sewing Machine Needles are featured in this frequently used size and are ideal for projects using denim or densely woven fabrics.

What Types Of Sewing Needle Do I Need?

Sewing machine needles are made up of different sizes and needle style, from Universal to Sharp and even Specialist. These different sewing needle variations are designed to suit a range of different projects and specific uses including topstitching, denim, leather and more.

Universal Needles

The "one for all" sewing needle that every machine user needs! Great for pretty much all regular sewing requirements and standard fabric types, the universal needle types are identified by their mid-range sharpness, putting them directly between sharps and ballpoints - which we will delve into later! Universal needles are usually the needles you receive with your sewing machine, and many beginners stick to this variation with no problems. However, if you find your projects aren't quite coming together as you hoped, it's time to choose a more specific size.


Defined by their robust shaft, small eye and, of course, their super sharp point. Sharps are designed to cleanly penetrate through tough, dense and micro-fibre fabrics. This needle type is not great for knits, but fine, lightweight fabrics and sheer or voile alternatives will work brilliantly.


Designed to help you avoid damage on knitted fabrics such as cotton knits or jerseys. The rounded ballpoint tip will push its way through the fabric without breaking the knitted fibres. Whereas sharp needles can catch on knitted fabric loops and cause runs, ballpoint needles work alongside the fabric structure without ruining your finished project.


Sewing on stretchy materials is difficult unless you have the right needles. Stretch needles will allow you to sew elasticated fabrics such as spandex, more modern stretch knits, as well as Lycra and other elastics. Stretch needles work thanks to a unique groove shape or "scarf" that works incredibly well alongside these often slippery and difficult to handle stretchy fabrics.


Twin needles are a must-have for decorative stitching work, creating a lovely pattern or helping you achieve that shop-bought, smart and professional look. Great for making beautifully finished hems on clothing and pintucks, at Ajanta Studios, our twin needles are also great for sewing on denims when you choose our Twin Jeans Machine Needles.


We stock a range of specialist sewing machine needles, designed for special projects, bespoke ideas and more difficult requirements. These include Hemline's Embroidery Needles, Top Stitch and even Twin Metalfil. Each of these needle types will make your project easier, giving you the benefit of unique needle features such as a larger scarf and wider eye for embroidery, size-appropriate topstitch eyes and metalfil needles that allow you to work with metallic threads.

Post By Ed Mason