by zedna 17 Mar 2012

Are there any secrets to using silk embroidery thread? I have been trying to get the look of shiny Chinese embroidery with no luck. The thread keeps breaking.

Is there a certain brand I should be using. Mine appears to be unbranded, I bought it at a craft show.


by tolgamum 18 Mar 2012

How old is your thread? This can have a big bearing on thread breaking,as does the speed you have your machine setting. Hope this is helpful.

by eastwitch2 18 Mar 2012

What weight is your silk thread?
You may have to use a different sized needle and also adjust your top thread tension.
Are you using bobbin thread in the bobbin?

Is the silk thread on a cone or a small spool?
If it is a small spool it may be straight wound on the spool which means you have to have the spool laying horizontal ( not upright) on a the machine pin for the thread to come off the spool easily.

There is some information on Superior Threads Website about Silk thread under the education section.

I think there is a chart showing the different threads and what needle sizes to use and tension setting and also what they suggest what type of stitching to use the thread for.


1 comment
zedna by zedna 18 Mar 2012

Thanks for this information, I will check it.

by jmweller 18 Mar 2012

Another suggestion about sewing with specialty threads: Slow the speed of the machine down by half or so. This also works when sewing with double needles.

by elizabethak 18 Mar 2012

Just as a point of interest, have you seen these Chinese girls embroidering a double sided picture in silks> both sides are perfect but have different colours. You should see the silk thread they work with. All done by hand!

by zedna 18 Mar 2012

Thank you all for your help, you are all great!

by blueeyedblonde 17 Mar 2012

I haven't used this kind yet, but I certainly am interested in the answers for future reference.

by eyeztodiefor10 17 Mar 2012

I too just bought the titanium topstitch needles from superior threads. I've been using them quite a while now. The eye is larger and they last a lot longer than regular needles, I've had less shredding of my poly since switching needles. I bought mine from suoerior threads along with some bobbin thread. It's worth a try.

by meganne 17 Mar 2012

Zedna, I recently purchased "Superior" Brand 90/14 Top stitch, Titanium, needles, to try with metallic thread that kept shredding and I was amazed at the difference these needles made, you may like to try using some for the silk embroidery thread.
You can buy them on Ebay from FarmRoadQuilts Store.
hugs n roses, Meganne

by greysewist Moderator 17 Mar 2012

You're a brave woman, Zedna! Are you embroidering shiny birds, perchance? The embroidery thread I use is KingStar, and I can't imagine wanting anything shinier than that is, but I wonder if it'd work if you used another thread alongside it to give it strength? You may then need a larger eye needle like some use for metallics. Organ make one. Some have been known to put older thread into the freezer for 20mins or so if it's inclined to shred, so could also try that. Let us know how you go. Marianne

1 comment
zedna by zedna 18 Mar 2012

Whatever made you think of birds ;-)

Lots of great tips however!

by oaro 17 Mar 2012

Tray Floriani threat

by kitty2011 17 Mar 2012

Have you tried siting your embroidery thread on a cone holder.. you know the sort that holds your thread up high, instead of having it on the machine spool holder. It stops the thread curling & tangling & therefore doesn't tend to break. Hope this works for you :)

by techgirl 17 Mar 2012

I wish I could help you, this is something I've always wanted to try too!