Thread Talk From My Sewing Machine #67

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Hello Friends, today’s post is a mixture of looking back and looking forward!  You will see what I mean.  I quilted with 100wt silk thread when I first started machine quilting on my domestic machine back in 2006.  Undoubtedly the effect of quilting with 100wt silk thread on fine fabrics is spectacular!

Very soon after that, I heard about the Aurifil Mako 50 cotton threads being used for machine quilting.  I would still quilt with the 100 wt silk threads if the opportunity arises, but I feel like Aurifil Mako 50 cotton threads allow me to quilt fancy as well as practical — I can still have amazing quitling results, and have the Aurifil Mako 50 cotton threads hold up the quilt sandwiches well enough for practical uses.   I personally wouldn’t use a quilt made with silk dupioni that is quilted with silk.  To me, a silk on silk quilt is something the beholder “admires with his eyes and not his hands” — something I tell Miss Baby whenever we are around breakables at the stores! :)  The following shows a few quilts (out of many) with which I have quilted Aurifil Mako 50 Cotton.

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I highly recommend Aurifil’s Mako 50 weight cotton for beginners and advanced machine quilters alike, and especially beginners because the fine weight is very forgiving.  It’s as if the threads “melt” into the fabrics!  So ALL these years I have only quilted with Mako 50 weight cotton threads, because they work beautifully!  I am also the type that always orders the SAME dish at the SAME restaurant almost every time (well, every single time) once I find a dish I like!  I get that from my Dad…. So, I have just been quilting with the 50 wt, and haven’t tried out the other weights.

This past week, I was asked to experiment quilting with Aurifil’s Mako 40 wt (slightly heavier than the 50wt), and then their Mako 28 wt (a little heavier than the 40 wt).  So, I broke out the Aurifil sample thread pack that many of you probably also have to get out the 40wt and 28wt spools.  Here is how my experiment turned out…. (green = 40wt, and silver gray = 28wt).

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I mainly wanted to see how tiny I can quilt with the 40wt and 28wt threads… You can see from the penny that is used as a reference, I can quilt pretty tiny with both the 40wt and 28wt threads.

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I think the tiny pebbles are a little “cleaner” quilted with the 40wt compared to the 28wt. However, considering how tiny my pebbles are compared to that penny, I think the effect is really not bad with the 28wt.

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Here is the back with the 50wt being used as bobbin thread.  Compared to the front picture, you can see that the effect of quilting with 50wt being finer and more subtle in the picture below.

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Here in this picture, you can see how the 28wt silver gray stitches show up more prominently than the 40 wt green stitches.

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SO…. what have I concluded?

  1.  28wt definitely showcases the quilting more prominently.  But as a personal choice, I probably wouldn’t use it for areas where I will have to stitch over previously stitched stitches too many times where the thread buildup will be noticeable.  With the 50wt, oftentimes, I would quilt the same path at least 5-6 times before I would start to see a thread buildup.
  2. I love that the 40wt shows the quilting a little better, and it will probably be my choice to quilt wholecloth quilts, especially when I want a strong contrast.
  3. I will, of course, keep loving to quilt with 50wt, and am now thinking about expanding the uses of the 50 wt (beyond the appliacations for which I already use) for tone-on-tone micro-fillers in a wholecloth settings, and for accents here and there.
  4. You already know I am not a fabric hoarder!  BUT I have to confess I am somewhat a thread hoarder.  I love threads more than I do fabrics.  AND…. discovering the 40wt and 28wt is not helping me with the thread hoarding issue.  HELP!
  5. Now, if you are a beginner — I encourage you to still quilt with the 50wt, until you are more comfortable in moving your quilt sandwich before you try the 40 wt and 28wt.  I think when you are still familiarizing yourself with domestic machine quilting, you will be happier with the very forgiving effects of quilting with the 50 wt.

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So you see, looking back, I loved quilting with Aurifil Mako 50wt threads. And looking forward, I will still love quilting with the 50 wt, but I will now add 40wt and 28wt in my quilting tool box!  I call that my “machine quilting growth spurt!”. :)

Thank you for stopping by, Dear Friends.  Happy Monday and Happy Week to you!

17 thoughts on “Thread Talk From My Sewing Machine #67

  1. Your excellent thread discussion is very interesting, and your quilting is just gorgeous. I find the initial to be particularly inspiring, as it’s an excellent way to personalize a quilt for someone special. Thank you for sharing your impressive work!

  2. Thank you for tour excellent information and demonstration. You have made me a believer in the Aurifil threads, and I have obtained the Mako 50 in white, gray and black. I know what you mean about hoarding thread… I enjoy looking at all the colors and would be beside myself with a collection of Aurifil threads in colors. Keep up the outstanding quilting and generous sharing of your knowledge and skills!

  3. Thanks for the information. I just started using the Aurifil 50wt thread for the quilting as I try and quilt on my regular sewing machine. I would like to know what type of batting do you use?

  4. Gorgeous! I’ve played with the 40wt and 28 wt for quilting, too. I do it when I want the quilting to be a little more showy, especially if the quilt top is rather simple. When the top has lots of pieces, I stick to 50wt, Aurifil is the best, though. I know understand why your quilts and your quilting is so beautiful, because you started with silk, the most challenging, and then went up.

    PS, Your Star Dust quilt was featured by Benartex’s blog today, but the download is missing pages. Would you be able to get them to correct that? And I purchased the calendar because of your May quilt. Have a wonderful evening!

  5. Enjoyed your thread talk this evening. Liked seeing the comparisons of the Aurifil thread weights. There is definitely a difference. I have not thought of myself as a thread person, but when I look in the various cupboards and drawers in my sewing room, I think differently. Your quilting is beautiful with all of the threads. thanks for sharing.

  6. Love your post ❤️ Your quilting is beautiful. We have had a similar thread journey lol but the last quilt I quilted needed a little bit more so I tried the 40 weight Aurifil and fell in love. Thanks for all your wonderful inspiration

  7. I absolutely LOVE your Thread Talk posts…they are so helpful and your beautiful photos are just plain EYE CANDY! This one was especially informative. I don’t have alot of different thread weights so to read your findings as to what to specifically expect from various weights is a real help. I love the “K”….I may have to copy that! lol…..Have a wonderful day……p.s. I will share your words of wisdom to Miss Baby with my grandchildren. I think they will understand those terms.

  8. Wendy your thread post was so interesting and really important for all quilters. Bless you for taking the time to post your beautiful photos and comments. Thanks!

  9. Thank you for the informative post Wendy! I have a sample of the 40wt and 28wt and haven’t tried them. I do love the Aurifil 50wt thread but now I will try the other ones.

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