I use a no. 90/14 universal needle and although you can use a smaller needle it is more likely to break. You can use any thread - for the cuff I used a metallic thread but here I am using rayon. The most important thing is to use a fairly thick backing fabric - such as pelmet vilene or felt. This is important because as the needle pierces the metal it leaves sharp edges which would shred the thread and possibly scratch your machine, but by backing it with a thick fabric the sharp edges become embedded in the fabric.
The machine is then set up for free machining - feed dogs lowered, embroidery foot on and top tension slightly reduced.. and away you go and start stitching your design.
In class on Tuesday, the ladies started some samples of stitching on metal but will be finishing them next week so you'll have to wait to see the results but I can show you what they finished from the week before which was stitching with foils with excellent results.
I will be demonstrating these techniques among many others this Saturday at a special open day at "Art and Stitch" which is Angela's needlework and craft shop in Peterborough. If you are in the area please come and say hello. And talking of Angela, look at the lovely things I won in her giveaway... this fabulous Oliver Twist inspiration pack...
On the subject of giveaways... I totally missed my 250th blog post so instead I'll have a 253rd blog post giveaway. If you would like to win the little turquoise tomato puree brooch... leave me a comment by Sunday evening and I'll pick out a name.