We usually choose our needle based on the size of thread, not based on the sewing application. The majority of professionals we talk to tell us they use the Topstitch style needle on home machines for most projects because it works so well for piecing, quilting, embroidery, crafting, and almost all sewing applications. Exceptions are when sewing on a knit fabric (use a ball point needle) or a very heavy denim or leather fabric (use a specialty needle).
The Topstitch needle has three advantages:
1. Large, elongated eye puts much less stress on the thread. This is especially beneficial for delicate, decorative, and sensitive threads.
2. Light sharp point. Not razor sharp which cuts, but a light sharp point which separates the fabric fibers, then penetrates.
3. Deeper and wider groove which protects the thread.
#70/10 for very fine threads (60 wt. and finer) such as MonoPoly, #100 silk, Bottom Line
#80/12 for fine threads. 50 wt. threads such as MasterPiece, So Fine, #50 silk
#90/14 for medium threads. 40 wt. threads such as King Tut, Rainbows, embroidery threads
#100/16 for heavier threads. 30 wt. and heavier
Titanium-coated Topstitch needles cost only 20 cents more per needle than a regular needle and last 5-8 times longer.