The needle you choose for your embroidery project is rather important. In fact, it’s probably the most important tool of the trade! And different projects require different needles. Unfortunately, most local craft and hobby stores do not carry a wide selection of hand embroidery needles.
I use a couple online sources for needles – Joann’s (especially when I can get free shipping!) for everyday embroidery needles, and to lay in supplies for embroidery classes. When I teach children, I have two good reasons for having plenty of needles – 1. they tend to disappear, somehow and often; 2. when working with children, I like for them to have several needles threaded and ready at once, so they don’t have to stop to fumble with threading. So Joann’s works pretty well when I want a good supply of every day embroidery needles.
For special projects, though – especially for fine hand embroidery – I have “favorites.” These are the needles I keep in a separate small envelopes, wrapped in tissue, and labeled carefully. I get them from Wendy Schoen Designs. They’re “the highest quality English needles” and they come in individual packs according to type, or in variety packs. If you’re interested in extra fine needles for detail work, you might want to check out Wendy Schoen’s selection of hand embroidery needles. A variety pack (the purple envelope’s my favorite!) would make a great birthday gift for your favorite stitcher – or an excellent stocking stuffer for Christmas!