A frequent question we get is “what is the difference between all the felting needles” and so we decided to make a post just about that!
There are a lot of different types of felting needles, but lets devide them into four categories arranged by shape. There are Triangle needles, Star needles, Twisted needles and Reverse needles. Caution: Needles are sharp and brittle, so be carefull when using them.
Please note that the felting needles are fragile. Make sure that you always puncture the needle at the same angle and take it out on that angle again. Avoid lateral tension, do not wiggle! It is wise to always have some extra needles in stock, in case the needle brakes. Possibly change the needle you are using to a finer needle / higher gauge when there is to much or to little tension.
The gauge of a felting needle refers to the diameter of the needle. The higher the gauge, the finer the needle and the smaller the barbs.
The first number we use in the item number refers to the amouth of sides the needle has. The second two numbers refer to the gauge. (For example Felting Needle “332”: 3 means three sided and 32 means 32 gauge).
Regular Felting Needles
These needles have three sides with regular spaced barbs at different places on the needle.
332 Universal needle for use with coarse to medium fine wool, intended for the rapid and overall modeling of a basic shape. This is a good needle for attaching pieces and large surfaces. When working with fine material this needle might make an uneven punctured looking surface.
340 A fine needle for detailed work and getting a neat surface. Best not to use it when working with very course fibres or for rough sculpting/bulk work. Universal needle to use with fine wool, intended for modeling details and also very suitable for application work. This needle is also an inexpensive replacement needle for the Clover sprung needle holder.
343 To use with very fine wool, for application work on fine fabrics, such as silk, and pinching very fine details.
Star Felting Needles
438 This needle has 4 sides. Ideal for evenly distributing fine wool, such as Merino wool, on a basic shape already felted with the coarse felting needle. A 4-sided needle has a body with extra barbs, compared to a 3-sided, which makes the needle felting quicker. Certainly if you puch at an oblique angle, as in the case of superficial and detailed work, you will notice the difference.
Reverse felting needle
R32 With this felting needle, the barbs are arranged in the opposite direction. So basically, you pull the fibers out of the feltwork. For example, you can needle the fibers out of a surface for that hairy creature you are working on and make a nice coat felt piece. Also handy for mixing different colors.
Twisted felting needle
T40 With this felting needle the barbs are placed on twisted ribs. This allows you to use the entire cross-section of the needle, not just three or four lanes, such as with a straight-line needle. This makes the needle work more effective and therefore faster.
Now you know what needle to use for your project! You can find all the needles here. If you want more help with picking the right felting needle, don’t hasitate to send us a message because we are here to help. Also; we love to see what you made, so tag us on Instagram @meaningful.crafts
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