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Thread: Using Polyester thread to quilt?

  1. #1
    Super Member jcrow's Avatar
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    Using Polyester thread to quilt?

    I was at a quilt shop a few weeks ago and the girl there said I should use polyester thread to quilt. Well, I only have used cotton since my fabric is all cotton. But I bought a lot of polyester thread because I thought she knew better (working in a quilt shop) and now another gal told me NOT to use polyester thread, that it would rip my cotton fabric. I have all this beautiful polyester thread and I don't know if I should use it or not. Any suggestions?
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    dd
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    Super Member dd's Avatar
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    I've always been told to keep it the same. Cotton fabric - cotton thread. You can use it for regular sewing - crafts, clothing, that sort of thing. But I was told the same - poly saws at your fabric everything it's moved and eventually cuts the fabric. I was also told that poly batting scrubs the fabric but I still use it.
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  3. #3
    Super Member ghostrider's Avatar
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    Personally, I never use polyester thread for anything, but that's just my way of doing things. There's a special word for sales people who tell a customer they SHOULD use a specific product they are selling...the proper word is COULD. It's your choice, not hers. There is no real proof that poly thread will rip your fabric, but it will probably outlast it by a very long time.

    ETA: I'd be willing to bet most longarmers use poly thread; I know mine does.
    Last edited by ghostrider; 12-30-2011 at 06:40 AM.
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    Senior Member crashnquilt's Avatar
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    There are no stead fast rules about poly or cotton. Poly thread ripping cotton fabric is an old myth. If you go to Superior Threads website he has very useful information about poly vs. cotton threads. Personally, I prefer poly over cotton for several reasons less lint, colorfast, easier to tension, doesn't change due to weather conditions, AND it does not shrink in the wash! I like using Maxi Lock thread for piecing because it is a finer thread and there is less of a bump when pressing seams. For machine quilting I use a lot of Maxi Lock, So Fine and Bottom Line threads.
    You just need to find which works best for you. If you prefer the poly threads then use them. Whenever someone says you should be using cotton thread just smile and say, "Thank you."
    The reason people think that poly thread will rip the cotton fabric is over time cotton fabric (being a natural fiber) degrades over time and with use and washing. Poly thread being a man made fiber does not.
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    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    This is another of the discussions that will never have a finite answer.
    Likewise the brand of thread.
    Lots of quilters use poly ... and lots of quilters do not use poly!
    Try the poly and see if you like it .... and do what works best for YOU!!!
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    Here is some information from Dr. Bob at Superior Threads about poly thread you might find useful.

    http://www.superiorthreads.com/educa...dition-or-myth

  7. #7
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    crashnquilt said it beautifully. Poly is fine to use, and so is cotton. I use both, but am moving more toward poly because of less lint. I also use Bottomline frequently because I don't have to change the bobbin as often and it takes up less room in the seam, so can help me with more accurate piecing. It's all a matter of preference - yours, not the sales person's.

  8. #8
    Super Member Val in IN's Avatar
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    I have to agree with crashnquilt. Thread is no different than any other product that we use. When Poly first came out, it was a different "animal". Just like our fabric has evolved, so has our thread, cutting methods, machines, etc. Would you use Poly thread from the 70's? Probably not any more than you would use cotton thread from the 70's. Everything evolves. Remember that cotton thread has evolved too. Use what you are comfortable with. If you're not sure, make 2 doll quilts, one using cotton, one using Poly. Wash them each several times together, and see which result is better. If there isn't any difference, you have your answer. If there is a difference, you have your answer.

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    Super Member carslo's Avatar
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    I use poly my machine doesn't like cotton so much.
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  10. #10
    Super Member hperttula123's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crashnquilt View Post
    There are no stead fast rules about poly or cotton. Poly thread ripping cotton fabric is an old myth. If you go to Superior Threads website he has very useful information about poly vs. cotton threads. Personally, I prefer poly over cotton for several reasons less lint, colorfast, easier to tension, doesn't change due to weather conditions, AND it does not shrink in the wash! I like using Maxi Lock thread for piecing because it is a finer thread and there is less of a bump when pressing seams. For machine quilting I use a lot of Maxi Lock, So Fine and Bottom Line threads.
    You just need to find which works best for you. If you prefer the poly threads then use them. Whenever someone says you should be using cotton thread just smile and say, "Thank you."
    The reason people think that poly thread will rip the cotton fabric is over time cotton fabric (being a natural fiber) degrades over time and with use and washing. Poly thread being a man made fiber does not.
    I agree with everything Crashnquilt says. I still use cotton at my domestic machine, just because I have so much of it but on the long arm I only use poly thread. So Fine is my favorite. I have done it this way for years now and I will tell you the quilts that I make for my kids at home get used for everything from cleaning up spills to sleds(my kids have great imaginations). Mainly the reason I use poly thread for quilting is that it doesn't lint up the machine like cotton does. It means cleaning it more often.
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