Metallic Thread - How to use for the best effect.
How many of you have tried metallic thread – had difficulty, and given up?
When I first began embroidery back in 2001, I knew nothing about thread quality, purchased a few spools of metallic thread from a big box store, and gave it a go!
It shredded, pulled, snapped, and was a general nightmare. For a few years after that, I steered clear of ALL metallic threads. It was probably 3 years later before I had a go again, and very quickly learnt that not all metallic s are made equal.
As far as metallic threads go, I do have a preference. And quite honestly – for me it is a hard and fast rule. I really, really swear by KingStar metallic threads by Designs in Machine Embroidery. You can get it online from DIME.
I love that this thread can stitch at high speeds, and even works on multi needle machines. I generally sew at approximately 700 stitches a minute, with this metallic thread, I don't change my embroidery needle from my standard 75/11 size. I just start her up, and love how beautifully it stitches.
What Makes a Good Metallic Thread?
KingStar has a polyester core that is wrapped in rice paper with a metallic finish. It does not kink as it unwinds from the spool and runs smoothly through thread tensioners. Smooth sailing means fewer thread breaks, less headaches, and gorgeous embroidery.
What to do if you are having difficulty with a metallic thread?
If you are finding you are having difficulty with your metallic thread, there are a few things you can try.
- Check the thread path. Clean along the thread path, and make sure there is no impediment to the thread running through the machine.
- Change your needle. This one is true for all types of thread – and will generally fix 80% of thread issues.
- Slow the machine down. Once again true for all types of embroidery, speed can kill in the car, and on the machine.
Choosing the best design to highlight with metallic thread
When you are looking at adding a metallic thread to your project, think accents more than bulk. Consider using metallic thread to highlight individual elements of a design, such as ornaments on a Christmas tree, or as jewellery on a face design.
Metallic thread is perfect to use as lace ornaments, simply make sure you use the same thread on the bobbin.
When not to use metallic thread
There are a few places that you should NOT use metallic thread
- Embroidering underwear (unless you wish to torture someone)
- Baby clothing (you can use an iron-on patch underneath the embroidery to save irritating the baby’s skin, however easier just to let it go)