Needle Facts: Needle Sizes

What are these numbers?  What do they mean?


60/8, 65/9

70/10, 75/11



100/16, 110/18



This is the full range of needle sizes for home sewing machines.  Size 60/8 being the finest needle, up to size 120/19 the largest needle size.  Needle size is determined by measuring the diameter of the needle blade, multiplied by 100.   So a needle measuring 1.0 mm x 100 = size 100, the metric size.  The second number is referred to as the Singer, International or Asian size and is assigned to the metric size.  Size 100 is size 16.  Size 80 will always be size 12. 

Sometimes the finer and largest needle sizes are more difficult to find, so just ask your local store to special order them for you.




  1. Ann Keil says:

    I am about to start a miniature lone star paper pieced quilt with 1/2″ pieces and need 65/9 needles but have not found anyone that carries that size. Where can I buy them?

  2. I am researching a bit to post a write up on sewing machine needles for quilters. I have come across several sources that indicate a lot of quilters are using Microtex/Sharps needles for piecing. Your website recommends the quilting needles for piecing AND quilting through many layers. Is one choice better than the other? Can you help me understand why? Also, once I have narrowed down my needle type, I believe I am to choose the size based upon thread weight. I cannot find a chart that makes these recommendations…. does one exist? For example, I typically piece with 100% polyester sew-all thread and I am wondering what size Microtex or Quilting needle is best for the application. Thank you for your help!!

  3. I took a class that used a 6 mm double needle on a Janome machine. I am trying to determine what number would beused for this needle ……help me please. S

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