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Thread: Trying to downsize

  1. #1
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    Trying to downsize

    Being a new year etc. I have the downsizing and organizing bug. When I first got my serger I went crazy and purchased thread for it in lots of different shades etc. It wasn't long before I figured out that changing four threads for every little project was a big pain. I probably own more than 50 spools of serger thread in different colors etc. I don't longarm and only basically machine quilt Linus quilts. What can I use all of that serger thread for? Is it alright for machine quilting or as bobbin thread for embroidery?
    I use my serger to do the basic sewing on my Linus quilts as most of them are just lengths of colorful child friendly prints backed with flannel and layered with batting. I make them envelope style and "birth" them. I sew the "envelope" with the serger, it cuts down on bulk and makes the seam sturdy. Since those seams are hidden I just use white or cream colored thread for them.
    Once they are turned I machine quilt them very simply with a decorative stitch and often varigated thread.

  2. #2
    Super Member deedum's Avatar
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    I too have trying to downsize in my sewing room. A person can just get too much stuff in there and then can't find anything I found. Been cleaning out and purging, sorting and trying to use up some of what I have. I have two sergers and tend to use the old one (they both are oLd)to make burp cloths and receiving blankets for babies. I would think it is fine for machine quilting but I would hesitate with the embrodiery part of it.

  3. #3
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    I use serger thread for machine piecing my quilts all the time. Never had an issue with it. Pick a color and go!

  4. #4
    Super Member mermaid's Avatar
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    Embroidery thread for the bobbin is usually white(if the piece is not reversible, and is very fine (40wt) so it won't create bulk in the many stitches of a design. The colors would be usable on top if you don't mind a "no sheen" look--which poly & rayon give. Personally, I use the serger cones for piecing all the time. And like you< I have tons of them --some came from factory sewing and I don't even know what fabric items they were used for. But if it's still strong--it is still usable!

  5. #5
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    i used up (tons) of serger thread for quilting, piecing, bobbins...my mom had purchased a store going out of business stock & brought home literally hundreds of cones of 'maxi lock' thread- we both used it for about everything for years...there isn't much of it left now- we both sew alot- we never had any problems with any use of it-

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    Embroidery thread for the bobbin is usually white(if the piece is not reversible, and is very fine (40wt) so it won't create bulk in the many stitches of a design

    (bottom line bobbin thread is 60wt---40 wt is a pretty common weight thread for piecing, quilting, garment construction ect---not considered a 'fine thread' at all---60wt-to 100wt threads are more the fine wt threads)
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  6. #6
    Senior Member himnherr's Avatar
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    I was given a ton of cone thread a couple of years ago. I use it both for piecing & quilting. Have not had any problems with it at all.

  7. #7
    Super Member wesing's Avatar
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    When we first got our quilter the only thread we could use with it was Maxi-Lock serger thread (100% polyester). The quilts we have made with it are still going strong. We have not used it for piecing.

    Darren

  8. #8
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    I've used my serger thread for everything with no issues. It works great for you embroidery machine, I use it to create a shadow effect on my embroidery as most of the embroidery thread is shiny and the serger thread is matte. Try a sample, I think you'll like it.

  9. #9
    Super Member wolph33's Avatar
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    I have used maxi lock for piecing for more years than I want to admit to,lol-guess I am getting old
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  10. #10
    Power Poster sewbizgirl's Avatar
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    If you are talking about "Maxilock", it is not a thread that was made to hold up to seaming or quilting. It was designed to be a cheap and light thread for finishing the cut edges of garments, to keep them from raveling. It sounds like people have gotten away with using it on their quilts, but if you want your quilts to last a lifetime, I wouldn't use it. I made all my kid's clothes when they were small, using a serger and knit fabrics as much as possible (faster, easier). It was then that I learned the serged seams with Maxilock do not hold up. The thread will break easily in any kind of stretchy seam under stress. I know quilt seams are not stretchy, but a thread salesman confirmed my findings that Maxilock is a lightweight thread. I would use at least a Tex 40 rated thread for quilts. Maxilock is only a Tex 27.
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  11. #11
    Super Member ube quilting's Avatar
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    @ Sewbizgirl: Thanks for the great info on maxilock. I still have a lot to learn about thread. There is so much out there.

    Is there a single source of info to go to for learning about thread? Maybe I should just google it and not be so lazy!
    thanks again.
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  12. #12
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    Fonz and Porter had this question on their Saturday morning show a few years back. They said the thread is lighter, therefore you get a lot more on your bobbin. The only difference is: serger thread is two ply, while most sewing threads are three ply. They said you would be fine using the cones of serger thread.

    The reason the serger thread broke on the knits, is that the needle threads in serging are straight and flat, and any thread is likely to break on knits that stretch. Try to give a tug on those pieces as they go through the serger and see if that helps.
    Mavita - Square dancer and One Room School Teacher

  13. #13
    Super Member LindaR's Avatar
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    isn't serger thread polyester??? I wouldn't use it in a quilt. JMHO
    Retired and living in NE Michigan

  14. #14
    Super Member huntannette's Avatar
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    I mostly serge my fabrics before washing....any color thread would do since you cut that edge off....
    Quote Originally Posted by mpspeedy2 View Post
    Being a new year etc. I have the downsizing and organizing bug. When I first got my serger I went crazy and purchased thread for it in lots of different shades etc. It wasn't long before I figured out that changing four threads for every little project was a big pain. I probably own more than 50 spools of serger thread in different colors etc. I don't longarm and only basically machine quilt Linus quilts. What can I use all of that serger thread for? Is it alright for machine quilting or as bobbin thread for embroidery?
    I use my serger to do the basic sewing on my Linus quilts as most of them are just lengths of colorful child friendly prints backed with flannel and layered with batting. I make them envelope style and "birth" them. I sew the "envelope" with the serger, it cuts down on bulk and makes the seam sturdy. Since those seams are hidden I just use white or cream colored thread for them.
    Once they are turned I machine quilt them very simply with a decorative stitch and often varigated thread.

  15. #15
    Junior Member sew_itnow's Avatar
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    I may not know what I am talking about but I have used Maxi-Lock thread for regular sewing, serving and quilting for many many years. I have never had a problem with it. JMHO

  16. #16
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    I have never had a problem with it.

  17. #17
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    Count me in as one who uses serger thread for piecing , quilting, and any other sewing I do. I even use Walmart brand regularly. I have never had any problems and breakage is not a problem. I have never been able to understand the argument that cotton thread will last forever. I know for a fact, having several very old quilts, that cotton thread "rots" as my grandma use to say. I also have noticed old spools of thread that are cotton do break very easily (rotten thread!!!) but old spools of polyester (and I have several from Grandma) do not. That is my humble opinion on the matter.

  18. #18
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    There was a quilt Eleanor Burns made with a serger. That was a few yrs ago.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by mpspeedy2 View Post
    Being a new year etc. I have the downsizing and organizing bug. When I first got my serger I went crazy and purchased thread for it in lots of different shades etc. It wasn't long before I figured out that changing four threads for every little project was a big pain. I probably own more than 50 spools of serger thread in different colors etc. I don't longarm and only basically machine quilt Linus quilts. What can I use all of that serger thread for? Is it alright for machine quilting or as bobbin thread for embroidery?
    I use my serger to do the basic sewing on my Linus quilts as most of them are just lengths of colorful child friendly prints backed with flannel and layered with batting. I make them envelope style and "birth" them. I sew the "envelope" with the serger, it cuts down on bulk and makes the seam sturdy. Since those seams are hidden I just use white or cream colored thread for them.
    Once they are turned I machine quilt them very simply with a decorative stitch and often varigated thread.
    Not an expert on serger thread but believe it's simply 100% polyester. Not sure what the weight is though. I wouldn't hesitate using it for sewing. I buy Gutterman 50 wt. all-purpose polyester thread and pretty much just use that now for whatever I'm working on. Hope the "quilt police" don't read this or I'll get yelled at for not using 100% cotton thread for quilting. I do use it but depends on the project. A gift project quilt will be all cotton so hopefully that covers me with the "police" LOL

    As for the serger, I had a basic model and agree it's a pain to thread. I got to where I wasn't using it because if I broke a thread, I stopped using it until I was up to rethreading it. I finally broke down and upgraded to an air-thread system Babylock serger. LOVE LOVE LOVE this serger. Takes about 2 minutes to switch threads.

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  20. #20
    Super Member MartiMorga's Avatar
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    As usuall great info. Have also "inherited" lots of cone thread and will now use it in more instances than just serging (by the way, which i love)

  21. #21
    Senior Member Spudgm's Avatar
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    I think the reason most people do not like to use polyester thread in their cotton quilts is because the polyester will last longer and as cotton fabric becomes older the polyester thread will cut the fabric where the cotton thread will not. At least that is what I have been told.
    -Life is like a quilt...bits & pieces, joy -and- sorrow, stitched with love- http://spudgrandma.wordpress.com/

  22. #22
    Junior Member sewnut's Avatar
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    Yes I use my serger thread in my regular machine and it does fine.

  23. #23
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    Another one who has used serger thread to sew and piece. I am slowly quilting my first quilt and using embroidery thread. I embroidered motifs in the centre of each square and am doing a fancy stitch around each block with the same thread.

    If it does not hold up, so be it, it is a learning experience.
    Attending University. I will graduate a year after my son and year before my daughter.

  24. #24
    Senior Member IAmCatOwned's Avatar
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    My sister is in the same boat. You have two choices - use the serger thread in all that colorful glory on all the spools or trade with someone for thread you can use to quilt. I personally would not use serger thread on my quilts, but other women have - some have been happy with the results, others, have not.

  25. #25
    Senior Member mshollysd's Avatar
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    I have used cone thread for piecing a lot in my life. However, most of mine has gotten pretty old. Since I started quilting on the long arm quilter, I have become somewhat a "Thread snob". I will only use bottom line in my bobbin, and when I quilt I use a great poly or cotton top thread. Now piecing, I normally use a good cotton thread from Connecting Threads but in a pinch, I wouldn't think twice using my old serger thread.

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