Monday, October 22, 2012

Unravelling the trail of thread in your room...
Notice that I didn't write unravelling the trail of thread in your drawer?  Because most of us have thread everywhere when we sew or embroider.  It's the normal state of things, even at the sewing stores.

Thread can be challenging.  It takes time to roll it up, secure the end and put it away.  And where to store it, and how best to store it?

Color is useful to organizing for many areas in the sewing and crafting room.  Thread is one area of organizing that a sub group would be prudent. Thread comes in many varieties and purposes based on content.

Did you know that the writing on the end of thread spools shrink at midnight?

It's true!  Really! Well, maybe just in my world.  Often we find ourselves sewing late at night.

Thread sorted by color and by purpose based on fiber content is essential for avoiding mistakes and wardrobe malfunction.  I thank Hollywood for that description.

It would be sad to sew your black pants together with a lovely black thread that is rayon or light cotton.  It won't hold up to "stress, and there will be a "breaking point". Remember that Bob Sledder on You Tube?

Thread holds your sewn seams together and strong seams are important. Knowing which spools at a glance are used for is excellent. The following is a suggestion and not a rule of how to sort your threads into groups and then store them together accordingly.   Look at all your threads and come up with a system that works for you. If you own a sewing machine, serger, and embroidery machine.  Keep your type of threads convenient to the machine that uses it. With colored markers you can code the sewing thread with a black dot, and threads requiring special care, with a red dot. Don't overdue the dots. Suggested sorting piles but certainly change them to suit your needs:

Sewing Machine:
All purpose sewing polyester
Heirloom threads
Quilting Threads
Decorative threads (silks,etc)

All  threads by color.  One other thought: If you can't see the difference between wooly nylon and regular serger thread, then consider adding a color dot system.

Rayon - has fabulous sheen. Rayon does not hold up to repeated washing but gorgeous on decorative items as well as lightly used items. Rayon tends to break when run on higher speeds,  maybe brand exceptions exist but this blogger hasn't found one.
Polyester - comes in a wide variety of colors and can handle speeds of 1000 stitches per minute. Polyester holds up to repeated washings.

Securing threads that have no "catch" on the spool.  My dear friend Betsy showed me this trick years ago with a rubber band.  Worked great but don't use a rubber band, as they get brittle and also sometimes stick to the thread over time. There is a cling wrap sold at sewing shops for this specific purpose that many sewers enjoy using. Covered Pony tail holders work great, and the small fabric ones work well on bobbins!

What to do with those blend-ables, twisted, striped and metallics? Put them in the color ways you create above depending upon durability: silver goes with gray, blend-ables, twisted, stripes, etc. go to the predominant color.  Again, this is a suggestion.

JUST KEEP IT SIMPLE, fewer categories makes the "put away quicker" and it certainly saves time on "the find" and decide end.

Once sorted, pick the organizing system that works with the way you collect thread and the amounts gathered. Leave room for growth, as it misbehaves just like the fabric stash! The tall rack of threads hangs by the professional machine in the workroom. The sewing combination embroidery machine sits with a roll under cabinet below with lovely inserts placed in the drawers to hold thread. Top drawer is sewing threads and the remaining ones are embroidery. Ordered the inserts for the Horn cabinet through a sewing machine dealer. Best purchase for the cabinet drawers.

Check out CookieSews on Pinterest and you will see other great organizing containers for threads and more. Next week we will cover BOLTS and STABILIZERS - I know you have them!


Sewconsult said...

I have a rack for each kind of thread. I have many of the same that you mentioned...regular sewing, serger, embroidery, quilting for my smocking pleater, and heirloom sewing. Some are probably getting old. I remember I use to wonder how people could have old thread. That's when I was sewing, day and night.

Anonymous said...

If you aren't using your thread especially blacks, purples, dark reds - consider putting them in a ziplock bag and head to your refrigerator so they don't dry out.