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Thread: Tangled Thread

  1. #1

    Join Date
    May 2009
    West Virginia
    I do a lot of hand piecing and recently I ordered Essentials thread, 3 spools. It works well on my sewing machine, but I find that it tangles when I try to hand stitch with it. Is there something that I'm missing. I use a condtioner, but it does not seem to help. Any suggessions?

  2. #2
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Western Wisconsin
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    I'm not familiar with this particular thread. Are you threading the needle with the end that comes off the spool, so that the knot is on the other end? Threads have a directionality to them (similar to hair), and they are less likely to knot if you are sewing in the direction that lays the fibers flat.

    The thread may be just too soft. A stiffer thread is less likely to tangle when hand sewing. This is why hand quilting thread is so much stiffer than regular machine sewing thread. Instead of a conditioner, try running the thread through beeswax.

  3. #3
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    home again, after 27 yrs!
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    i found that it was me. i turned the needle a bit when removing it from the fabric and putting it back in. twisted everytime. i had to let it dangle every once in awhile.

  4. #4
    Marjpf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Greater Los Angeles Area
    [quote=Prism99] Threads have a directionality to them (similar to hair), and they are less likely to knot if you are sewing in the direction that lays the fibers flat.

    I never knew that! Thank you Prism.

  5. #5
    Super Member jljack's Avatar
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    Apr 2007
    North Carolina - But otherwise, NOTW
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    If you give the needle a little tiny partial turn after each stitch you won't tangle your thread. I think we all have a tendency to twist the needle as we hand sew. I know I do when I am hemming binding. I just give a little bit of a twist the other way, and it doesn't happen so much.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Verona , Virginia
    Hi , this may sound a little silly , but it works . Take an unused dryer sheet , cut into quarters . Fold in half lengthwise , place threaded needle in the fold pull through several times . Conditions the thread and will not knot . It really works ! Needle and thread both slide right through the fabric :thumbup: . I have been doing this for years now . Give it a try . Annie

  7. #7
    Senior Member Loretta's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Surfside Beach, South Carolina
    All the things I learn on here. Love it.

  8. #8
    Junior Member
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    Jul 2010
    Pilot Mountain, N.C.
    This came from a recent Superior Threads newsletter:

    When hand appliqueing or hand quilting, there is a school of thought that says you pull the thread off of a spool and knot the end you cut while others say you pull the thread off of a spool and knot the end you pull. The notion is that there is a twist to thread and pulling it one way through fabric is better than the other and pulling it the wrong way ends up causing problems. So, what’s the answer?
    Answer: It will matter if you use a low quality, loosely twisted, budget thread. If you use a high quality thread with a tight, consistent twist (such as So Fine, Bottom Line, MasterPiece, or Kimono Silk) for hand applique or King Tut and Treasure for hand quilting, the twist is so smooth, precise and consistent, the direction does not matter

  9. #9
    Senior Member crashnquilt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Lebanon, Missouri
    Whenever I am hand sewing with a thread that tangles, I use beeswax on it. I've tried other thread conditioners, but nothing seems to beat good old fashioned beeswax. If you can, run the thread thru the beeswax a few times then run it along a hot iron plate. Melts the wax into the thread and works great.

  10. #10
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Maryville, Tn
    Another thing that will cause thread to tangle is working with too long a length.
    While it's nice to not have to thread needles as often I have had to make myself work with a shorter length. Works much better, and I never knot my thread when hand piecing I just do about 3 stitches in a "backstitch" to secure a seam. It eliminates the problem of hitting a knot if you're hand quilting. I do use a knot when hand quilting though.

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