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Thread: Invisible Thread ?

  1. #1
    Senior Member ArlaJo's Avatar
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    Invisible Thread ?

    I've never used this and want to know what I have to know to get it right. I want to applique with it. What do I use on the bobbin? Any tricks?
    So much fabric, so little time.

  2. #2
    Super Member cashs_mom's Avatar
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    I use regular thread or sometimes bobbins thread on the bottom with the invisible thread on top and don't really have any problems with it. I do have to drop my top tension on my Bernina or it will break the thread. I think Bernina used to tend to set their top tension a bit tight (at least it seems that way on my machine) but it's pretty easy to loosen it up.
    Patrice S

    Bernina Artista 180, Singer 301a, Featherweight Centennial, Rocketeer, Juki 2200 QVP Mini, White 1964 Featherweight

  3. #3
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    I have a love-hate relationship with invisible thread. I've used it extensively on McKenna Ryan applique quilts, and I think it is the right choice for the technique, but it's always a struggle for me.

    Let me preface this by saying I could be doing something wrong, so take my advice with a grain of salt. I have two machines: a Brother CS6000i and a Brother PQ-1500SL. For some reason, my little old CS6000i tolerates the invisible thread but the 1500 hates it. I just cannot get the tension right on that machine. So I end up cramming my quilts through the tiny harp on the CS6000i (other than this one quirk, I Looove my 1500, it's a fantastic machine!). Hopefully you have better luck than me.
    I always use regular cotton piecing thread in the bobbin. I just do a straight stitch around the edges of my applique pieces, I save the satin or blanket stitches for when I'm using cotton thread on top. It's a great technique for applique (especially if you're just going to use it as a wall hanging), but has it's limitations: no ironing, questionable longevity, can be difficult to work with. Good luck!
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 03-23-2018 at 12:32 PM. Reason: remove shouting/all caps

  4. #4
    Junior Member PAMAR's Avatar
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    The only invisible thread I use is Superior Threads. I have not had any luck with any other brands. I also us a needle with a bigger hole. The smaller ones tend to melt the thread. I sometimes also place the thread cone in a cup to the right of the machine. That seems to allow the thread to "relax" before it hits the needle.

    I use invisible thread in top and bobbin.

  5. #5
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    I use invisible thread often for appliqué. I use Aurifil monofilament from Superior Threads, it is great thread. I use regular thread in my bobbin that is usually just a neutral, light or medium gray or cream, depending on the background fabric. I use a blanket stitch for my appliqué most often, really don’t like satin stitch and don’t know how it would work with the invisible thread. Once in a while I do use a small zigzag. I also use the same Aurifil invisible thread for quilting. I do have to loosen my top tension a bit when using it on my longarm.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  6. #6
    Super Member quiltingshorttimer's Avatar
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    whether using a spool or a cone, use a thread net so that it comes off the spool/cone smoothly. My best tip--little larger needled that you'd use for the wt it is and lots of light cause it's hard to see!

  7. #7
    Super Member coopah's Avatar
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    I love the effect of using invisible thread for applique. I use invisible thread for a straight stitch or very small zig zag stitch. The bobbin is piecing thread, cotton and neutral, as others have said. The instruction book gave me the setting for tension, so if you have your book, you could check that or go online for your machine to see if you can figure that part out. Practice a few small items first, then have fun!
    Last edited by coopah; 03-23-2018 at 05:04 PM.
    "A woman is like a tea bag-you can't tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water." Eleanor Roosevelt

  8. #8
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    A couple of additional tips for you. The auto threaders don't usually work with the INV thread. You have to thread the needle.

    Slow the machine speed down and don't sew at the fast speed.

    I use a thread stand and place it behind machine. It allows the thread to come off the spool without twisting. If there are kinks the thread will break. I don't adjust tension on my machines so have no advice.

    Good luck!

  9. #9
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    I’m not familiar with the term thread net. Can someone give a description? Thanks.

  10. #10
    Super Member JENNR8R's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bneuen View Post
    I’m not familiar with the term thread net. Can someone give a description? Thanks.
    https://www.amazon.com/Embroidex-Sew...ds=thread+nets

  11. #11
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    I took a class with artist David Taylor last summer and he suggested turning a seam allowance under before appliqueing with invisible thread. He also suggested a stitch that takes a few straight stitches and then a small zig zag into the applique piece. I don't know what it's called, but it works very well.

  12. #12
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    There are a lot of really good uses for 'invisible' thread (and it comes in clear-clear and a dark-clear for use on darker fabrics). Having said that, let me add a word of caution. It is like thin fishing line, it is hard to break. So, if a thread comes loose, it can stay put and wrap around tiny baby fingers and toes and strangle them. I never use this thread on anything I am giving to a child.

  13. #13
    Super Member MaryKatherine's Avatar
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    I think the stitch that Mkotch is referring to is a blind hem stitch. It's what I use rather than a zigzag or straight outline.
    Just be aware that even though the thread is almost invisible the large needle leaves a large hole, not so bad on some fabrics but really noticeable on tighter weaves like batiks.
    I sometimes use the darker and the clear IV thread in the same piece, switching when the thread itself shows more than I like.
    marykayhopkins123.blogspot.com

  14. #14
    Senior Member ArlaJo's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone..... I guess it's like most things. trial and error after you get advice. My applique is looking better with practice.
    So much fabric, so little time.

  15. #15
    Junior Member osewfast's Avatar
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    I use it for Invisible Machine Applique. Regular cotton thread in the bobbin, invisible thread on top, blind hem stitch adjusted to take just a wee 'bite' into the applique piece while stitched right next to it. The stitches will look something like ---^---^---^

    I've been happy with YLI monofil. thread and more recently a polyester thread. Good results with both.

    Good luck!
    Donna Mc

  16. #16
    Super Member meanmom's Avatar
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    I like the Superior threads monopoly thread the best. It comes in clear and smoke. I am currently working on an applique project with it. I have to tighten my upper tension a little bit. My machine works best with regular thread in the bobbin. Use a really fine needle, I use a 60/8, it makes smaller holes in the fabric and helps to keep the bobbin from pulling up to the top.

  17. #17
    Super Member cashs_mom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaryKatherine View Post
    I think the stitch that Mkotch is referring to is a blind hem stitch. It's what I use rather than a zigzag or straight outline.
    Just be aware that even though the thread is almost invisible the large needle leaves a large hole, not so bad on some fabrics but really noticeable on tighter weaves like batiks.
    I sometimes use the darker and the clear IV thread in the same piece, switching when the thread itself shows more than I like.
    Yes, that is usually called a blind hem stitch. To avoid leaving large holes, you can always use a 70/10 or 60/8 needle.
    Patrice S

    Bernina Artista 180, Singer 301a, Featherweight Centennial, Rocketeer, Juki 2200 QVP Mini, White 1964 Featherweight

  18. #18
    Super Member GingerK's Avatar
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    I found another use for invisible thread. When our Guild held a quilt show, we had to put hanging sleeves on our quilts. I was very very nervous about using safety pins to hold up a king sized quilt with a 4 inch wide sleeve. Instead, I put invisible thread in my bobbin and raised my stitch length to its longest. I sewed the hanging sleeves to the quilts, no one could see the stitching from the front, and I knew that the quilts would be secure when they were hung up. Taking the sleeves off after the show was a breeze because of the big stitch length.
    Never argue with an idiot. They'll drag you down the their level and beat you with experience.

  19. #19
    Super Member Jeanette Frantz's Avatar
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    I use the invisible thread for satin stitch applique, yes, even for baby quilts. I also do this so there is very little chance of a baby getting fingers or toes caught in the invisible thread. I pull the thread through to the wrong side and tie it both at the beginning and at the end of that particular section of stitching. I do NOT rely on the machine to tie the threads -- I make sure the thread is tied on the wrong side of the block to which the applique is being attached. I have no problem pressing the blocks either -- just do not use the hot setting on your iron.

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