Tips and Tricks For Threading a Needle

Getting that limp piece of thread through the eye of a needle can seem like a challenge. Threading a sewing needle shouldn't take up your valuable time and it shouldn't be frustrating! Following a few simple tips and tricks can make the job a breeze!

  • 01 of 10

    Put White Behind the Needle

    Sewing Needles for hand sewing
    Hand Sewing Needles. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com

    Whether you’re threading a sewing machine needle or a hand sewing needle, white behind the needle makes the eye much more visible.

    Keep a small piece of index card pinned to your pin cushion. Then when you are threading a needle that piece is always available to place behind the eye of the needle.

  • 02 of 10

    Put White Behind the Sewing Machine Needle

    White Behind Needle on a Sewing Machine
    White Behind the Needle on a Sewing Machine. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com

    Many new sewing machines have a white presser foot holder. If your machine has the standard silver presser foot holder, tray a dab of White-Out on the foot holder, behind the needle. Allow it to dry before sewing fabric.

  • 03 of 10

    Cut the Thread with Sharp Scissors

    Sharp Sewing Scissors
    Sharp Sewing Scissors. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com

    Always use sharp scissors to cut the thread. A clean cut thread is always easier to get through the eye of a sewing needle than a fuzzy shredded thread.  If you are using quality thread this will usually make the task much easier.

  • 04 of 10

    Cut the Thread at an Angle

    Cut the Thread at an Angle
    Cut the thread at an Angle. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com

    Cut the thread at a forty-five-degree angle.The thicker that the thread is, the more you will see the angle cut but even if you can't see the angle,  it makes it much easier to guide the thread through the eye of the needle.

    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
  • 05 of 10

    Stiffen the Thread

    Beeswax to Stiffen Thread
    Beeswax Being Used to Stiffen Thread. Debbiine Colgrove, Licensed to About.com

    Stiffen the thread with water, saliva or beeswax. It will be easier to control and guide the thread through the eye than a limp thread. The poor quality thread that wants to unravel is usually helped with this method. Is There a Difference in Thread? You be the Judge!

  • 06 of 10

    Use a Needle Threader

    An Assortment of Needle Threaders
    Needle Threaders for Threading Sewing Needles. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com

    A needle threader usually comes with many packages of assorted sewing needles but can also be found in the sewing notions section of your fabric store.  That little wire gives you a big eye to thread even if your sewing needle has a tiny eye. How to Use a Needle Threader

    Visit sewing machine dealers and sewing notion departments to see many new needle threaders available to thread hand sewing needles and sewing machine needles.

  • 07 of 10

    Sewing a Machine with Built in Needle Threader

    Pull Down Sewing Machine Needle Threader
    Pull Down Sewing Machine Needle Threader. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com

    A built-in needle threader is available on almost all upper-end sewing machines.The automatic needle threading option can range from a pull-down lever that you control to just pushing a button and the machine doing the work. If threading a needle is stopping you from sewing, consider making a bit of an investment to make sewing enjoyable.

  • 08 of 10

    Solving Clumsy Hands

    Serger Threading Tweezers
    Tweezer from Threading a Serger. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com

    Consider using tweezers. Long bent handle tweezers are available for threading a serger but can work just as well to hold the thread while threading any sewing needle since they are larger than gripping a piece of thread.

    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10

    Use Moisture

    Threading a Sewing Machine Needle
    Threading a Sewing Machine Needle. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com

    Try a bit of moisture on your thumb or index finger behind the needle. The moisture works like a magnet to draw the thread through the eye of the needle.

  • 10 of 10

    Use an Eye that Matches the Thread Size

    A close up view of button craft thread and all purpose thread
    A Comparison of Button Craft Thread to All Purpose Thread. Debbie Colgrove, Licensed to About.com

    If you're using a fine thread, such as Bobbin Thread use a needle that has a small eye, but if you are using a thick thread such as Button and Carpet Thread, choose a needle with a larger eye to accept the thread and prevent damaging the thread as you sew.