Tutorial: Using a Wing Needle and Other Decorative Stitches

Posted by Jodie Pascoe on

23rd July, 2020 Blogger: Jodie Pascoe

Using a Wing Needle and other Decorative stitches  

Most sewing machines have different types of decorative stitches that allow you to add some creative flair to your garments. Often we don’t even try them, however with a little test run and a specialty sewing needle, you can really elevate your project.


Wing Needle

Using a wing needle can give your project a sweet vintage feel with little effort. They can be purchased from many sewing centres or even from Ebay. Check your machine to see if you need a special foot, although most machines come with the ones you need. I use a Brother sewing machine, and the foot required is the ‘N’ foot, or monogramming foot.




The wing needle is slightly wider than your regular needle, so be sure to hand wind the needle down to ensure it fits between the plates for the stitch you have chosen to use. If it doesn’t, then adjust your stitch length or it may do some damage to your needle or machine!



We recommend doing a small test piece first on a scrap of the same or similar fabric you’re planning to use. Linen works well, as it has a nice loose weave and allows the needle go in smoothly to create a small, neat hole. The star and box stitches work beautifully with a wing needle.



Slowly stitch the stars or box stitch in your desired pattern. It can be quite tedious and may be very tempting to sew quickly, but the slower you go, the neater the stitches will be.


The Scalloped Decorative Stitch

This is a fabulous stitch to use to create a scalloped border, it is created using a regular sewing needle. When pairing a scalloped edge with a winged stitch, I recommend doing the scallops first and the wing needle stitch last.
It looks so pretty on the edge of the Poppy flutter sleeves – here is how to do it! Firstly, pin the flutter pattern piece to the fabric. Trace the template onto the fabric with a removable sewing marker, this will be the guide to follow as you sew the scallops.



Sew the scallops along the straight edge of the flutter piece (not the curved). Be sure to sew slowly, so the machine doesn’t skip any stitches. Once the straight line is completed, give the piece of fabric a good iron.
Run some ‘Fray Stoppa’ or similar fabric product along the scallops and leave to dry. This will keep the scallops neat and stop them from fraying while being cut.



Carefully cut around each scallop, using a small sharp pair of scissors. Trim close to each scallop but be careful not to cut any threads! When complete, give the flutter piece another good iron.



When coupling another decorative stitch such as the star stitch (using a wing needle), line up the fabric so that the foot meets the inner point of the scallops.


Following this line will keep the stitches an even space apart. Once completed, give it another iron. It can also be helpful to spray starch.



Your gorgeous poppy flutters are now ready to attach to the bodice! Don’t forget to share your amazing work on the Peony Patterns social media pages!


The Poppy pattern was used to create this dress.



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