Thread Matters April 03 2023
When you use the right thread for the job, your projects will look better instantly!
If you haven't found the thread that's right for you or your machine, we've got some threads you might want to try to elevate your piecing, quilting and more.
Check out our Red Thread Studio picks below, but in the meantime, I'd love to know your favorite threads! Comment below.
From hand piecing to machine piecing and quilting, I love to use Aurifil cotton thread.
Aurifil produces a mercerized thread that is widely heralded by a dedicated tribe of quilters, sewists, and textile artists for its versatility, its strength, its lustrous color and the fact that it produces virtually no lint.
The 50wt is ideal for piecing, both by hand and and by machine. The thread's thinness makes flatter, more accurate seams resulting in a truly professional finished product. When it comes to machine quilting, the 50wt is a fantastic choice because it sinks into the fabrics, creating the perfect amount of definition without being overbearing, allowing the piecing to be the star of the show!
But we also stock 40wt too for those of you who require a bit thicker thread.
Grab your Aurifl thread by the spool or build your stash with our Aurifil Color Builder Thread Club.
RTS Pick: AURIFIL
When it comes to hand appliqué, I love it when my thread melts into the fabric without a trace.
There are several options including cotton (Efina from Wonderfil), silk (Kimono from Superior Threads) and polyester threads (Invisafil from Wonderfil) that I use.
My personal favorite is Invisafil. It is a remarkable silk-like 100wt, 2-ply cottonized polyester. This ultra-fine but surprisingly strong thread has cotton-like characteristics and negligible stretch while also feeling soft in the hand.
Invisafil makes for super low bulk stitches and virtually “disappears”, making it the ultimate choice for appliqué (Spoiler alert: and is the the ultimate choice for English paper piecing!) whenever you don’t want your stitching to show.
It is available in 60 subtle to bright colors with a matte finish, so you can choose how much want the thread to show (or not at all)!
RTS Pick: INVISAFIL
Hands down my favorite. I love that it is on a spool.
After years of product development and research by Wonderfil, along with Sue Spargo's expertise every step of the way, they have created what is to be the finest wool applique thread available on the market.
Engineered and finished to the highest quality standard, Ellana is extremely user friendly and the perfect wool thread for both hand appliqué and machine work. Ellana is fray resistant, contains significantly less fuzz, and possesses unparalleled smoothness.
And even better, there are 60 gorgeous colors that match Sue Spargo's wool!
RTS Pick: ELLANA WOOL THREAD
When I first started English paper piecing, I researched the best thread to use. At the time, I started with Aurifil 50wt.
As I worked to refine my stitches and to make them smaller and less visible, I discovered Invisafil. You can read my thoughts above under hand appliqué thread on the benefits of using Invisafil. They all apply to English paper piecing but for which I would add that the polyester has proven to be stronger especially when rubbing up against the papers.
RTS Pick: INVISAFIL
Phew...this is a hard one. I always encourage students to try traditional Sashiko thread like Olympus brand or Hidamari on a cone by Lecien Cosmo. These threads have a mat finish.
If you would like a sheen, then I highly recommend Eleganza Perle Cotton in size 8...I particularly like the spools with Sue Spargo's collection.
But if I had to chose only one, I would pick Eleganza.
RTS Pick: ELEGANZA PERLE COTTON
What I love about Big Stitch Quilting is that there are not many rules....and the same can be said about the thread used.
Some folks love to use a 12wt (like Spagetti by Wondefil) but my go-to thread is yet again Eleganza Perle Cotton. I generally use 8wt but depending on the look you want to achieve, you might explore 5wt for a bold look.
RTS Pick: ELEGANZA PERLE COTTON SIZE 8
Another difficult category for me. When it comes to six-stranded embroidery floss, I really like Lecien Cosmo thread. There is a wonderful selection of colors and the quality is amazing...it's like butter!
But when it comes to hand dyed floss, I am swooning over Cottage Garden Threads, and in particular, their Signature Series. Currently, we stock their top 80 colors but keep watching here as we will have some thread club options coming up in the future!
You can learn more about the Katie and the team at Cottage Garden Threads in Australia HERE.
RTS Pick: COTTAGE GARDEN THREADS
It's always fun to add some pizazz to your piece!
From metallic threads to silk ribbons, your project will shine!
RTS Pick: RAZZLE AND DAZZLE