The fabric is often the first thing people notice when looking at a quilt. This leads many beginner quilters to assume that the fabric is the most important part of their quilt. While the fabric is important, your quilt won’t stay together if you don’t use the right type of thread. They may then wonder what kind of thread is available and which type they need for their quilting project. You can learn more about thread types and what projects to use them for below.
Traditional Cotton Thread
Cotton thread is the traditional choice for quilts and is still the most popular option available today. One of the reasons for its continued popularity is that this thread does not stretch, which is important when ironing and washing quilts. It’s also matte, unlike some thread types such as silk, and many quilters prefer this quality. Fifty-weight cotton thread is the most popular version of this thread.
Strong Polyester Thread
Polyester thread has many of the same benefits as cotton while providing additional strength. The extra strength of this thread means you can sew with finer thread for near-invisible stitches. It does have slightly more shine than cotton, so it will be more noticeable in certain lighting. Additionally, it has a slight stretch, making it ideal for stretchy knits but not all fabric types.
Fine Silk Thread
Silk is a natural fiber like cotton but is extremely fine and shiny. While it’s not the first choice for most quilts, it is perfect for certain circumstances. If you’re already using silk fabric, then adding silk thread to your project is a natural choice. This fine thread also seems to disappear when you stitch it, which makes it a great choice for details like applique. You can use an iron to shape it as necessary and even reshape it since the natural fibers won’t break with heat.
Thick Wool Thread
In many ways, wool thread is the antithesis of silk. It has a matte finish like cotton but is much thicker and ideal for working with thicker fabrics. Instead of disappearing into the fabric, it stands out, which makes it an excellent choice for topstitching and embellishments. You can use this fabric for hand stitching or machine sewing, but since it is thicker than most traditional quilting threads, you will need to use a larger needle or adjust your machine.
Decorative Metallic Thread
The last thread type you might need for a quilting project is metallic thread. This unique thread type often has a nylon or polyester core covered in gold, silver, or copper. While most people prefer it for machine embroidery, it adds beautiful yet delicate flair to quilt topstitching as well. It’s easiest to use with a machine, but you can sew by hand with this thread as well.
Determining what kind of thread you need for your quilting project depends on the qualities you desire in the thread. Each of the threads above is ideal for a specific type of quilting project. If you’re in need of Canadian sewing supplies, such as various types of thread, Lindley General Store can help. We even offer a thread-matching service for some types of thread so you can get exactly what you need for your next project.