Printwear

October '13

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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Hart of Embroidery |||| by Helen Hart Momsen Taking the Mystery out of Needles A screen printer-turned-embroiderer recently ordered some needles and was bewildered by Helen Hart Momsen has been a member of the embroidery industry for more the perplexing codes listed all over the boxes. than three decades. She is the owner of Virginia-based Hart Enterprises. WideHe wanted a magic decoder ring, so I assured him ly published in the industry's trade press, Momsen is a monthly columnist and the answers were all provided in the book he had just feature writer for NBM's Printwear magazine. Momsen founded the Embroidery purchased from me: Professional Embroidery: Stitching Line, an Internet forum where embroiderers can share ideas and offer assistance by Design. Twenty-four pages of needling info that and encouragement to newbies and veterans alike (www.EmbroideryLine.net). just makes embroidery life… well, more to the point! She developed and sells the Hart Form, a business ordering aide used by many The needle is a symphony of complexity and simprofessional embroiderers. Momsen is also the author of two embroidery-related books: Professional plicity. It is one of the least expensive components Embroidery: Business by Design and Professional Embroidery: Stitching by Design, available on the Web used in the process of embroidery, and yet some at www.HelenHart.com. Her third book, Professional Embroidery: Digitizing by Design, will debut in 2013. stitchers still wait until a break occurs before changing it. The "one size fits all" approach may result in The 287WKH is a variation of the 287WH adequate embroidery, but what a world of difference it makes to switch to a smaller with a straight, not reinforced, blade and a needle for more detail, or a wider-eyed version when you want to give your metallic smaller scarf. The K stands for Kurtz, Gerthread more maneuvering room. man for "short." It is shorter from the eye to Changing the needle when trouble rears its head usually resolves the issue. Sharp needles the point than the 287WH, but has the same become dull, ball point needles get nicked, and even a perfect needle may not be perfect shank diameter. A shorter point will exit the for the job at hand. Changing may be time-consuming, but it is a fact that a sharp needle fabric faster and move easily on to the next that can pierce the center seam and buckram backing without hesitation will stitch caps stitch, making this needle a good choice when better than a ball point, and a ball point needle used with knits will prevent unsightly runs. So, let's decode those needle abbreviations and discover why we should consider using the correct tool for the job. Point of decision The system, size and point of a needle can be checked by looking at the engraved numbers on the shank through a magnifier or jeweler's loupe. The basic system designs are reinforced 287WH (also known as the 16x231 and DBx1). This is the standard needle against which all other needles are compared. There is also the 287WKH, which has a shortened point and straight blade, and the DBxK5, which has a reinforced blade and larger eye, created by thinning the sides of the anvil. Finally, the DBx7ST has a larger, rectangular eye for use with metallic threads. The 287WH has a longer scarf and is longer from the eye to the tip. The small eye tends to create more tension on the thread, so this needle doesn't do well with specialty threads. It has a reinforced blade, which means the blade has two different diameters—thicker at the top than at the bottom. It is designed for use on heavy fabrics, wears less, creates less friction and has more resistance to needle deflection. The 287WH works well with dense stitching, longer stitch lengths, and on nylon or leather. The length of the scarf makes this needle unsuitable for use when timing the machine. If you don't need a large eye and the DBxK5 breaks at the eye but you can't go larger, this needle may be your best choice. 2013 October Printwear PW_OCT13.indd 49 | 49 9/17/13 9:12 AM

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