Monday, December 12, 2011

Thread, Thread and More Thread

A quilter can never have enough thread.  No matter what you use, always choose the best quality you can afford.  The old saying ‘You get what you pay for’ applies to thread.  Why spend hours on a quilt you treasure and use cheap thread that will break, deteriorate or wear the fabric?  You can never have enough thread so it is something your giver will know you are going to use, especially on projects that use a much thread in reverse sewing as straight ahead stitching.

So the question is ‘What is the best kind of thread?’  The first answer is always, ‘Whatever kind your machine likes.’  Somehow each sewing machine works better with one brand of thread than another.  It has little to do with the manufacturer because the same brand of machine can work best with different brands of thread.  If a project is not going well with one thread and you have tried the list of fixes (rethread the machine, change the machine needle, clean the bobbin and bobbin casing), switch to a different brand.  You never have to blame yourself again.  Give the spool to the cat to play with or use it for basketball practise.  Try something different and tell the sewing machine how much happier it will be.  One reason we carry King Tut and not Sulky Blendables  is the longarm machine has a definite preference. 

I prefer to sew with cotton thread.  I like the way it feels and it never melts with a hot hot iron.  But there are different weights to thread.  There is no industry standard for weights but something with a 50wt is great for piecing.  If you are sewing straight lines any 50 wt will do.  If you are sewing multiple points that meet in the middle, Superior Masterpiece is definitely a finer 50wt so it really takes up less room in the seam allowance.  If you are sewing 8 pointed stars and are blaming the fabric for all your troubles, try switching to a finer thread.  It’s amazing what a difference it makes.  I’ve even set aside my cotton fixation and used a Wonderfil DecoBob 80wt thread.  But then, going back to the saying about buying the best you can afford will lead you to Silk 100wt by Superior.  You could even be tempted to try a Mariner’s Compass! 

There is machine quilting thread and hand quilting thread.  There are metallic threads and rayon threads.  My head is now spinning.  There is so much to know and tell.  I’ll save the rest for blogs in the new year.  Hmm… how about some demo days or play dates?!

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