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Thread: Thread for Hand Applique?

  1. #1
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    Thread for Hand Applique?

    I"ve just discovered back-basting needle turn applique and it is perfect for me! My C&C dual-duty thread seems heavy. Is it really that much heavier than other threads? Which of the threads available is really best. It is too expensive to buy many to experiment with. What about the Masterpiece threads from Superior Threads in the frosted bobbins?

  2. #2
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    my favorite for hand applique is silk thread in a beige color. it disappears no matter what color the patches are.
    Nancy in western NY
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  3. #3
    Super Member DogHouseMom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuiltnNan View Post
    my favorite for hand applique is silk thread in a beige color. it disappears no matter what color the patches are.
    Agree about silk thread 100 wt. I have a 6 pack from Superior threads: black, white, dark & light grey, and dark and light beige. I'm covered!!
    May your stitches always be straight, your seams always lie flat, and your grain never be biased against you.

    Sue

  4. #4
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    I've done some hand applique with machine embroidery thread, Metro threads has fabulous prices, tons of colors and excellent service.

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    The Superior Threads sets that come in the round bobbin keepers are good for doing the hand applique. They are usually 50/2. Mettler "Silk", which is actually cotton thread, and Aurifil are also 50/2. Most regular piecing thread is 50/3. I am using silk on my Baltimore Album quilt, but am using the Mettler on another project. There is debate about the silk thread cutting through the cotton fabric, but I figure that won't happen until I'm long gone. You can also check out the Superior Threads website, which has a lot of good information on threads.

    Use your regular C&C for doing the actual back basting. You can also use a hand-quilting thread. You want to use a larger eyed needle and thicker thread so that you can see the holes in the fabric. I am experimenting with backbasting with my sewing machine, because it goes so much faster. For that, I am using my Gutterman cotton thread.

    There is a Yahoo! group for hand appliquers and for machine appliquers, and many members belong to both groups. Lots of great advice and pictures.

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    I do a lot of applique and I use quilting thread for back basting and YLI silk thread to applique. I have, over time, purchased many colors but the one I use the most is 235 which is a medium beige and sinks right in and fits most colors. I basically use earth tones so the 235 works for me. I you use more pastels there is a light beige that would work. When I found back basting and needle turn applique, I found my niche.
    Marilyn

  7. #7
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    I really like using YLI silk thread, 100 wt.

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    Quote Originally Posted by QuiltnNan View Post
    my favorite for hand applique is silk thread in a beige color. it disappears no matter what color the patches are.

    Exactly what I use. It always looks great.

  9. #9
    Super Member cabbagepatchkid's Avatar
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    It probably isn't the best thread to use but I bought one of those emergency sewing kits (you can find it in your local grocery store) and it has 10+ little spools of varied colored threads. I made an appliqued doll quilt, as my first project, and many years later the kids are still playing with it and it's been washed many times. I probably wouldn't use that thread for an heirloom quilt but it's seems ok for everyday stuff.
    ~~Cathy~~

  10. #10
    Super Member franc36's Avatar
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    I love the 100 weight silk thread for hand appliqué. I usually use thread to match the fabric being appliquéd; but use colors like beige, gray, or white if I don't have a match. The thing I like about the silk thread is that I don't see it once it is sewn into the fabric

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    I have been doing hand applique for over 10 years and have found that silk thread sinks down into the fibers and practically disappears. I choose the color of thread based on the color of the appliqued piece.

  12. #12
    Junior Member QuiltnMyra's Avatar
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    I also use YLI silk thread and can confidently recommend it.
    Mary B

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    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    I also use silk thread for applique- I also use it for hand piecing- it is so smooth, fine, strong and blends in/disappears. when I do not have the silk in a color I need- neutral is not the best choice I turn to Aurafil; also a nice, fine thread.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  14. #14
    Senior Member quiltin-nannie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuiltnNan View Post
    my favorite for hand applique is silk thread in a beige color. it disappears no matter what color the patches are.
    Ditto!! Love the silk thread!
    Julie
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    Senior Member rvsfan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MsPatty View Post
    I"ve just discovered back-basting needle turn applique and it is perfect for me! My C&C dual-duty thread seems heavy. Is it really that much heavier than other threads? Which of the threads available is really best. It is too expensive to buy many to experiment with. What about the Masterpiece threads from Superior Threads in the frosted bobbins?
    I have been on this board for several years but never heard of back basting. What is it? Thanks
    rvsfan
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    I love Aurifil especially for applique, with only 2 ply and lots of colors its so easy to have it blend in. Since its a good quality I also know that it'll hold up. I will only use it to applique and also to piece.

    I use the heavier thread for the back basting but for the actual appliquing part. The heavier thread for the basting really helps define the lines. I also use glue sticks, tooth picks to aid in making the whole process alot easier. It's my favorite way besides machine applique.
    Last edited by romanojg; 07-24-2013 at 07:34 AM.
    Judy

  17. #17
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    I got started using silk thread but didn't want to buy all the big spools to get the colors I needed. Started using Bottom Line from Superior - now I have all the colors I want and like the way the thread disappears when it is sewn.

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    I've been hearing a lot about what thread works best since I started a Baltimore Album class. Silk, silk-finish cotton, 100% cotton machine-embroidery thread, you name it. The latest recommendation is Invisi-Fill, which is supposed to be available at the Quilt Festival.

    For every thread somebody loves there's somebody who can't stand it.

    The fact is, I've used garden-variety Coats & Clark almost exclusively since the day I learned to sew. I mean, I'm used to it. I can put it into the eye of a size 11 straw needle with bare hands and naked eyeballs. I still feel more comfortable with it than anything else.

    One of the most experienced applique-ers at my bee says that the best thread is the one that you can find when you need it as long as it kinda matches. Sounds good to me.
    Last edited by FieldGuidetoQuilts.com; 10-12-2013 at 03:29 PM.

  19. #19
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    Back basting is when you trace the block pattern on the back of your background fabric (using a pencil or erasable pen or whatever) and then attach the front fabric to the back fabric with a basting stitch done from the back along the exact line that you traced. After that you applique via needleturn from the front, cutting the fabric and thread just an inch or two ahead of your needle. It's more straightforward than it sounds. It's also pretty accurate. Very accurate, if you're good at it.

  20. #20
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    I think the frosted donut with Masterpiece thread is the best ideal for hand applique! You get lots of colors without spending a fortune on all those spools. Its easy to travel with, and Masterpiece is wonderful thin thread that disappears into the fabric.

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