Using Wing Needles

The uses of wing needles other then heirloom sewing…. I’ve seen where you can use wing needles to (I’m going to say) hem a piece of flannel to where you can crochet an edging around it. I have tried and tried and not been successful at this. What am I doing wrong or not doing properly? Please advise. Thanks and Merry Christmas, Marie.

Dear Marie,
Wing needles work best when used on natural fiber fabrics (like cotton or linen) with a very lightweight thread such as Mettler 60-weight cotton. You would select a heirloom stitch and use one or two layers of light Lose Weight Exercise tear away stabilizer underneath the stitches. I wouldn’t personally use it on flannel because it’s primary use is for hemming lightweight linen & cotton fabrics but if you must then practice, practice, practice! If you used it on a cotton lightweight flannel to evenly space the holes to add a crochet hem then use the longest stitch width & length that you machine will offer & the lightest Lose Weight Exercise cotton thread & tear away underneath.
There are several stitches that work well with a wing needle but if you do not use a tear away stabilizer, the stitches will look very sloppy and the needle will “chew” up the fabric. Below are two of the most common stitches to practice with:

  • Entredeux stitch
  • Pinstitch or Blanket stitch

Here is a photo of what a traditional wing needle hem looks like on a lightweight linen fabric. 

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2 thoughts on “Using Wing Needles”

  1. I like to make doilies etc, and like to add my own crochet edging also. I find that the tearaway, though it works well, is a real pain to pull out when finished. I now use the stitch N wash from Floriana, works a treat. I use the entredeux stitch.I cut the stabilizer into 1″ strips and then put under the marked lines and just follow around with my entredeux stitch. When finished, just wash out and you have a nice clean finish, back and front.

  2. Hi Hope,
    need your advice, I have a machine Bernina activa 240, – whether this machine can be used needle and Wing Needles, write to me-this needle is different.
    You are a great Art. your works are beautiful, I love what your work, Haapy Christmas en Nieuwe Jaar 2010,
    I warmly greet- many hugz, Wanda

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