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Needles and Threads

There are various needle manufacturers. With time you will find what works best for you. I will give my preferences, but please feel free to use what you are comfortable with.

  • Quilt and regular sewing needles have large eyes and most times will not fit through a bead hole.
  • I prefer John James or Pony needles. Size 10 is my favorite. I do keep smaller sizes on hand just in case.
  • Big eye needles are great especially for those who have trouble threading needles.
  • My used needles always have a curve to them, and I can usually tell if I've picked up someone else's needle.

Rules of Thumb:

  • Size 10 or 11 beads use a size 10 needle and size B or D thread or 4 or 6 lb Fireline
  • Size 11 or 12 beads use a size 11 needle and size A or B thread or 4 to 6 lb Fireline
  • Size 12 or 13 beads use a size 12 needle and size A or B thread or 4 lb Fireline
  • Size 13 or 15 beads use a size 13 needle and size O or A thread or size 2 to 4 lb Fireline
  • Size 15 or smaller beads use a size 15 needle and size 000 to 0 thread or size 2 lb Fireline


  • Beads - The larger the number the smaller the bead.  Size 11 is smaller than size 8.
  • Needle - The larger the number the thinner the needle. Size 10 is thicker than size 13.
  • Thread - The larger the letter the thicker the thread. Size D is thicker than size B, size B is thicker than size A, A is thicker 0 (zero).
  • Thread - The larger the number the thicker the thread. Size 10 is thicker than size 4.
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