Posted by Lukas Kowalewski

Sewing Pins - Knowing the Different Types


Sewing pins are helpful tools for quilting. You can use them to pin the fabric together temporarily prior to sewing. With the help of sewing pins, the fabric stays in place and will be easier to sew correctly. 

However, there are different types of pins. The types of sewing pins come in various lengths and thicknesses, and different types of sewing pins are best for different types of quilting. 

So how do you know which types of sewing pins you need?

Read on to find out!


Types of Sewing Pins


Sewing pins have various heads. Here are the different types:

  • Flathead. These are good for hand sewing or ironing, however, they can be hard to see on textured or patterned fabrics. 
  • Plastic head. These are inexpensive and very visible. Their bell-shaped heads don’t slip through the fabric, making them great for beginners. They come in a wide variety of sizes and are versatile for many projects. 
  • Glass head. Glass headed pins are similar to plastic headed pins, except the head is made of glass of course. They’re able to withstand hot irons. But they also come in an assortment of sizes, lengths, and colors making them great for many projects. 


Next, you’ll want to consider the pin length. The ideal length will depend on your project needs and preferences. 

  • Quilter pins. Sewing pins for quilting must be longer. You need the length to be able to pin through multiple layers of fabric securely. The best quilting pins are between 1.5 and 2 inches long. 
  • All-purpose pins. These are medium-length pins, between 1 and 1.5 inches long. They are used for a wide variety of projects with medium-weight fabric (like cotton). 
  • Applique pins. These are short, thin pins. Their small size is ideal for small projects like attaching trims. Then are ¾ inch long, but can be even shorter. 



Thickness matters for material delicacy. Delicate fabrics, like silk, require thinner pins. Choose the thinnest pin possible for your project and reserve thick pins for heavy-weight fabrics. It can be hard to find the right pin thickness, as most manufacturers label them with words like “silk” or “extra fine” rather than a measurement. Test to see if the pin leaves a hole in the fabric. If it does, it’s too thick. 

Sewing Notions Canada

There are many different kinds of pins available, and each one is suited best for certain projects. When choosing your sewing pins, consider the fabric you are using and the thickness of the material to find the right pin head, length, and thickness. Shop all the different types of sewing pins for quilting online today at Runaway Quilting. Head to our online store here!