Why should you care if your designer uses silk thread? Aren’t all sewing threads pretty much the same anyway?
Please do care, and yes it matters….
Do you know someone who sews? I bet they will tell you super cheap sewing thread is very annoying to use. When machine stitching, poor quality threads fray and jam in your machine. If stitching by hand they curl up, knot and break. The last thing you want thread to do is break! Anytime. When stitching the garment together, or, worse still, whilst you’re wearing it!
The absolute worst sorts of threads are plastic ones like fishing line. How many of you have had a hem come apart because you pulled on a loose thread and the whole thing comes away? They feel horrible. And melt if you iron them.
Lots of sewers will tell you Guttermann brand threads are the best (these are one of the best available in fabric shops). And, yes, I too use Guttermann… well, I used to use their 100% cotton. These days we use a beautiful thread which has a polyester core and has a mercerised cotton exterior. This flows nicely through the machine, and will change colour if the garment is dyed at a later stage.
But, when it comes to hand stitching, we use only silk thread. Why? For many reasons…
- As our gowns are all pure silk (the real stuff from silk worms), silk thread matches the gown beautifully.
- Silk thread is beautiful to stitch with as it does not easily curl and knot.
- Silk thread glides through with our french needles, and is beautifully strong.
- Silk thread is smooth and flows as it is pulled through the fabric, creating a smaller hole.
- Silk has a lovely natural lustre without being shiny.
What more could we want?
We used silk thread to stitch Jennifer’s wedding gown together, and then when she dyed it a fabulous blue… see the results for yourself (from her happy snap).
TIP especially for the few of your who sew, or those who need to mend something…
If you plan to hand stitch anything, cut your highest quality thread at about 140cm long. Dampen one end, squeeze it flat and thread your needle. We use Bohin French embroidery needles in size 9/10. (If you can’t find them, Mary at Patch n Quilt in Gisborne, Victoria always stocks them.) Then run your thread all the way to the other end and put three knots on top of one another. This double thread will produces the best results for hand stitching, and, your stitches won’t come out until you’ve finished.
Remember, thread is to hold your garment together. So, aim for small stitches in high quality thread.
ps If you sew, what are your favourite threads to use? Please let us know in the comments below.