#7 Cool World of Specialty Threads

by | Jan 25, 2021 | Blog, Homeschoolers, Podcast, Teachers

Hello there! Get cozy…

Stitchers – whether you’re sitting in your comfy chair with your coffee, in your car,

or looking for ENGAGING content teaching in your home or in a school—

We’ve got your stitched stories covered!

Get ready for an in-depth look at another overlooked but super important concept for both thread: ply

But before we dive deeper, let’s get inspired!




Ready for inspo? Your best habits?..

This episode’s quote is from New york-based fashion designer Maya Gorgoni. When asked: 

Which of your traits are you most proud of?

she answered 

“My determination and that I seldom take no for an answer.”  

Excellent advice and a wonderful introduction to this episode where I discuss this amazing colorful world of unique threads! I encourage you all to experiment! 

So don’t say no to say working with metallic thread or even a monofilament! 

Be open-minded.

Give them a try and you’ll be happily surprised at the discoveries that you’ll find and how you can incorporate them into your stitch practice!

I like to embellish a boring solid color tank top or t-shirt. They’re pretty cheap so I feel free to take artsy risks on them.

Nine times out of ten, I’m psyched with the result! (that’s a Massachusetts term meaning excited)

Quote from  In the company of women: inspiration and advice from over 100 makers, artists, and entrepreneurs, by Grace Bonney. >>Get it >>>here


Blue background with stars

So, which of your traits are you most proud of?

Share on Instagram, Facebook page, or in our private FB group, Storied Sewing Circle ( >>join here!)


Here’s my “specialty thread” story–What’s yours?

I learned about specialty threads through the amazing Maurine Noble who is no longer with us. Maurine is very well known in the traditional quilting world and she’s written many books on the subject. 

One that I studied was Machine Quilting with Decorative Threads, co-authored with Elizabeth Hendricks.

I had the privilege of taking a class with Maurine in a Bernina dealership near my hometown in 1999 or 2000. Maurine taught us all about the different threads you could use and the types of needles used.

My head was bursting with all the new threads I bought that day, I couldn’t’ wait to get home and try them out!

Go ahead and find out all you can about these threads and experiment!

Go forth and conquer the world of wild threads! 

After listening to this episode, please, go have yourself a thread party! YAY!


Link to Maurine’s book


Now, think about YOUR first specialty spool of thread!

What is YOUR cool thread story?

Share on Instagram, Facebook page or in our private FB group, Storied Sewing Circle ( >>join here!)


What’s this episode really about?

We’ll be diving into the types of specialty threads out there! The main categories, their materials and when to use them….and how to experiment with them!

We’ll end by detailing thread finishes, which naturally affect how the thread acts and looks on your stitched project!

After listening to this episode, you’ll feel WAY more confident to experiment with various weights of threads! YES!

Join us for this podcast, and get the scoop metallic, jean, variegated, and a zillion other cool threads?!!



Episode  #7 Cool World of Specialty Threads

So much thread, so little time! Here are some definitions to get you started!

Clear Thread: Also called Monofilament and Continuous filament thread, this type of thread resembles a very fine fishing line and is useful when you want your stitches to be invisible.

Embroidery Thread includes machine embroidery and hand embroidery thread/floss. Embroidery thread is made from a variety of fibers, rayon being the most popular due to its high sheen and good price.

Embroidery Floss is Popular for hand embroidery and needlepoint, it is either spun by hand or by machine into 6 strands. Then, it’s divided to achieve the desired thickness. Colors, numbering, and weights vary depending on the manufacturer. 

Metallic Thread (my FAVE) is used to embroider and to sew decorative topstitching. It’s weak and breaks easily, so handle with care! It’s usually made with a polyester core and wrapped with slivers of metal foil/tinsel. No high heat or steam, please–it weakens and destroys the stitches. When used properly, metallic thread is beautiful and is always worth the extra effort.

Quilting Thread Is either cotton, polyester, or a blend of both. It’s mercerized to increase it’s strength and color longevity. VERY important for quilters, as they don’t want their thread to fade after all that work!!

Variegated Thread fibers are dyed in intervals of alternating shades and colors along the entire length of the thread. It can look super ugly on the spool but trust me– when layered– variegated thread can offer sublime color depth to one’s work!

Finally, I’ll also talk thread finishes – from waxed to mercerized – and you’ll be dancing your way to your local fabric store – or trolling online thread sellers- to start your wild thready experiments

Ready for more? YAY! Listen to episode 7! Thanks and see you soon!!!!!


Middle school student drawing

Hey hey! References for educators and….. nerds!

Want more juicy info? Check out the refs below! Indulge in your LOVE of all thinks “stitch!”


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Why the School of Storied Stitching?

For me, needlework is a deeply meaningful form of personal expression that I want to share.

The sewing circle is a way to connect with fellow stitchers – and to remember those who are gone…