Quilting, whether done by hand or on quilting machines, should be done with thread designed for quilting. Although technically any thread can be used for quilting, some thread is specifically made for use on Juki quilting machines like the Juki HZL-DX7. Available in four primary types, quilting thread is more durable than many standard types of thread, making it preferable for most quilting projects.
Hand Quilting Thread
Hand quilting thread is a heavier thread made from natural cotton, designed to withstand the rigors of hand sewing quilts and quilt use. This thread is coated with a thin film of wax that helps it slide through fabric easier; it also makes it easier on the hands when pulling the thread through. It is available in many colors and is extremely versatile. Hand quilting thread is specifically for hand sewing and should not be used on quilting machines since it is not as finished as thread designed for machine use.
Cotton Quilting Thread
Most quilting thread designed for use on quilting machines like the Juki HZL-DX7 is made from 100% cotton. Cotton is stronger and more durable than most other sewing machine thread, making it ideal for quilting. Cotton thread is available in a wide range of colors and thicknesses to suit any quilting project, including thicker, hand-tied quilts. Cotton blend quilting threads are also available; however, many find that they are not as strong. Because cotton blend threads require the twisting and blending of multiple fiber types, these threads are sometimes weaker than 100% cotton threads and may not withstand repeated washings.
Nylon Quilting Thread
Nylon quilting thread, also called invisible thread, is a clear or smoky gray thread that, when looks almost invisible when sewn on fabric. It is useful when you want to hide the quilting stitches to create a project with invisible seams. It can be used as both the top and bottom thread to get this look. Despite the invisible quality of this thread, many quilters find nylon quilting thread to be more difficult to work with as it breaks more easily on sewing machines such as Juki quilting machines. Additionally, nylon quilting thread is not suitable for hand quilting.
Metallic Quilting Thread
Popular for display projects, metallic quilting thread is available in different metallic colors and adds a beautiful touch to special quilting projects. It is not especially durable and cannot withstand multiple washings like cotton quilting thread. Metallic quilting thread is decorative and should only be used for wall hangings and other decorative quilting projects that will not undergo any kind of use.
The right thread is essential for the best outcome when sewing quilts on Juki quilting machines such as the Juki HZL-DX7. When choosing thread for a quilting project, a choice should be based on whether the quilt will be hand quilted or completed with quilting machines as well as whether the quilt will be for decorative or practical use. This will ensure the best thread performance and the durability required to prevent thread breakage on quilts sewn for regular use!