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Thread: Ideas for storage of thread cones for long arm

  1. #1
    Super Member quiltingshorttimer's Avatar
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    Ideas for storage of thread cones for long arm

    when I bought my long arm 3 years ago, I also bought all her rulers and thread--3 footlockers of thread. Most colors have multiple spools and also at least one bobbin with thread on it. I currently put like colors and any bobbins with that thread on it into a zip-loc and divide by color into one of the 3 footlockers.

    I am looking for an idea that would keep all the like colored thread together and also be able to store the matching bobbin together, keep light and dust off it, but also not have me continually digging among my bags of cones for the "perfect" thread choice.

    What do the rest of you use?

  2. #2
    Power Poster sewbizgirl's Avatar
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    White thread.
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    How about those plastic bins on rollers that are made to slide under beds for sweater storage?

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    Super Member Tiggersmom's Avatar
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    My DH made me an A frame on wheels that has pegboard on each side. The matching bobbins fit on the thread of the pegs and the cones slide over them. To keep dust off the large clear plastic drink cups have a hole punched out in the bottom and I also have the end of the cups numbered with the thread # and color name.
    Only problem is it does take up floor space.
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    I have what looks like a coat rack or basket rack. It's a tall skinny rack made from 2"x 2" wood with 4 braceing cross bars on the bottom to hold it upright. We drilled holes to hold dowel rods at an angle...can't remember the size dowels or the length but each dowel will hold a large cone of thread comfortably. The important thing is that it can sit in a corner and not take up much space at all. Each side (4 total) of the 2" x 2" can hold 8 to 10 cones.

  6. #6
    Super Member Pam S's Avatar
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    I bought one of those wide plastic drawer units from a big box store (WM, I think). It's 3 deep drawers high and fits nicely under the LA frame. I cut pieces of pegboard to fit the drawers and glued pieces of dowel rod in every other hole (staggered the rows) for the cones to fit on. Never thought of making the dowels long enough to hold the bobbin too, but I just checked my set-up and found that the bobbins will fit over the end of the dowels but not go all the way on. Wouldn't want to force them on for fear of bending them. Hope that makes sense.
    People will see your quilts long after you're gone - NOT your housework!

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    I have a cabinet with sliding doors for my thread cones. It is narrow so can put only two cones deep but that is good as I buy two of each color(easier to work with). I put any bobbin with thread still on it inside the cone it belongs with and keep the cone and bobbin in the original bag the cone came in. I keep the bags from any empty cones in case I have one rip. My cones are all Superior thread company. I don't know if other brands have a big enough center hole to hold the large bobbin. I also stocked up on bobbins(like 35 I think) so I don't have a problem running out of bobbins though I have come close once or twice.

    My cabinet is set on an southeast facing wall which has windows so it doesn't get sun at all as there are no other windows there(basement).
    Sally

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    I don't use cones, but I wanted to know........does thread "go bad"? I have a friend who has a lot of thread that she's had for awhile. I know about pulling it to see if it breaks...but does anyone have any idea how long thread usually lasts if stored out of light, away from dust, etc.?

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    I'm working on organizing and redoing my sewing room. I have a chest of drawers and I put my thread in one of the drawers. I have my bobbin boxes for both machines but each box is labeled for specific machine. My threads are also labeled, cotton, cotton/poly, and poly. Now my cousin has her la thread spools on a built in shelf. She made a curtain out of a heavy blackout fabric on a swing rod. Keeps the sun out. My neighbor has old sewing boxes labeled with the different thread.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by NoraB View Post
    I don't use cones, but I wanted to know........does thread "go bad"? I have a friend who has a lot of thread that she's had for awhile. I know about pulling it to see if it breaks...but does anyone have any idea how long thread usually lasts if stored out of light, away from dust, etc.?
    Just test it. I've got thread I haven't used yet from estate sales that still have wrapping on it.

  11. #11
    Senior Member lfletcher's Avatar
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    I use a chest of drawers for my thread cones and clear plastic bobbin holders with lids for my bobbins. I label the bobbin holders by type of thread. It's easy to see the colors when I pull out a drawer and it's also easy to see if I have any prewound bobbins with the clear holders. I try not to wind more bobbins than I need and if I have 2 cones of the same color this makes it easy. (I have a stand alone bobbin winder). This works for me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tessagin View Post
    Just test it. I've got thread I haven't used yet from estate sales that still have wrapping on it.

    You will still need to check it to make sure it is still strong.

  13. #13
    Super Member rryder's Avatar
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    Just give it a tug. If it doesn't pull apart, then it's fine to use. I have lots of very old (think 75 to 100 years old) thread that I use frequently for my wall hangings. Sometimes the first couple of layers on the outside have weakened due to sun exposure etc., but usually if you pull that off then what is underneath was protected and is good. That said, I would throw away any that has mildew or mold on it.

    I would not use some of my older threads for quilts that will be used like lap quilts or bed quilts, but I have used lots of thread from the 60s and 70s in quilts that get use as well as in potholders, and they have held up just fine.

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    Super Member caspharm's Avatar
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    I was using a CD Cabinet with sliding doors, but it's too shallow. I am probably going to use an tallboy left over from a bedroom set we gave away. I measure the drawers and I can get my spools and a lot of my rulers in it.

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    Senior Member Michellesews's Avatar
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    I use two large drawers. I use a golf tee to attach a bobbin to the like thread if any is left. I try very hard to not have a lot of left over bobbin.
    Michelle Guadarrama

  16. #16
    Super Member slk350's Avatar
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    I store all my serger thread (I don't know if your cone thread is the same) in one of those plastic 3 drawer "dressers" from Walmart. I made dividers for each drawer from cardboard, like the ones used to divide X-mas ornaments and put the thread in sets of 4 matching colors...works great and keeps the dust off

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    Quote Originally Posted by sewbizgirl View Post
    White thread.

    LOL... makes life simpler, right!?
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  18. #18
    Senior Member Michellesews's Avatar
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    I have a LOT of thread because I longarm for the public. I keep my Glide thread in two large drawers. All other is in a cloth square box, the kind that folds flat.. on a shelf. I marked on the fronts of the cloth boxes the types, I.e.; sew fine, King Tut verigated, Bottom line...etc. with so many different kinds this makes it easy to find them and they are protected from sunlight.
    Michelle Guadarrama

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    Super Member quiltingshorttimer's Avatar
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    Came up with a solution--I looked at several of your suggestions but ultimately figured out that using my large, deep plastic totes, along with a plastic tote the same size but 1/2 the depth, allows me to put 2 layers of cones in each tub, sorted by colors and easy to actually see what I have. I then slide the totes under the long arm and can put my feed up on them when I'm quilting while sitting on my drafting stool! Win/win!

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    Quote Originally Posted by quiltingshorttimer View Post
    Came up with a solution--I looked at several of your suggestions but ultimately figured out that using my large, deep plastic totes, along with a plastic tote the same size but 1/2 the depth, allows me to put 2 layers of cones in each tub, sorted by colors and easy to actually see what I have. I then slide the totes under the long arm and can put my feed up on them when I'm quilting while sitting on my drafting stool! Win/win!
    any solution that includes a foot stool it a winner in my book.

  21. #21
    Member Peterswife's Avatar
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    Well, for now I'm using a over the door shoe organizer w/clear pockets....but I have to come up with something better.

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