Use these Tricks for Embroidering with Metallic Threads

comments (6) May 21st, 2008     

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JenniferStern Jennifer Stern, contributor
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I am so proud of this skirt! I had many great times in it while it was a pair of jeans, and I love that I get to wear it again
in a completely different way.
Here is picture of the back and side of the completed denim skirt!
This is the front view of the completed skirt.
I am so proud of this skirt! I had many great times in it while it was a pair of jeans, and I love that I get to wear it again
in a completely different way.

I am so proud of this skirt! I had many great times in it while it was a pair of jeans, and I love that I get to wear it again in a completely different way.

Photo: Len Hasemann

I love projects in which you create something new and wonderful out of something old. I had a pair of jeans kicking around my closet that I haven’t worn in years, and I decided to give them new life as an embroidered skirt. The jeans-as-skirt created the perfect canvas for a beautiful embroidered hem. I then further embellished it with free-motion stitching! I used a lovely dark gray metallic thread that added the perfect sparkle. I used all my tricks for embroidering with metallic threads, but I still had some minor tension problems.

Sometimes, no matter what you do to prevent tension issues, they can still occur. Bobbin thread can show up on the right side of your embroidery designs. You can minimize how obvious it is by using thread in the bobbin that closely matches the fabric you are embroidering on. I used black bobbin thread, and when it peeked out on the right side, it was barely noticeable.

Here are the tricks of the trade when embroidering with metallic thread:

Use Metafil needles: The needle hole is huge, and there is a little groove in the back of the needle scarf for the thread to pass through smoothly.

Use Sewer’s Aid: A clear silicone liquid that lubricates the metallic thread. (Just put a few beads along the spool of thread. Never put it on your machine directly!)

Use the vertical spool pin:
This is especially important, thread that is on the vertical spool will come off like toilet paper—nice and smooth with no twisting, thus reducing tension problems and thread breakages. If you need a visual, visit the bath, and pull the paper off the roll! Thread positioned on a horizontal spool pin twirls off in the horizontal position, making it kink and twist.

Try a glass cup: If you're still getting stuck and the spool is almost finished, you can try skipping the vertical spool in favor of a glass cup. Place the spool in an empty glass, and position the glass behind and to the right of your sewing machine (thread as you would normally). Sometimes, if the spool is allowed to tinker freely in a glass, it will behave while you’re embroidering.

Go slowly: If you still have problems embroidering, try slowing your machine down. Some times metallic thread behaves better if you’re gentle.

Remember the walk away rule: If you’ve been fighting with your project for more than a few minutes, and you’ve rethreaded, changed the needle, and rethreaded several more times, take a break. Sometimes, as if by some magic, things work better after you've taken a mini vacation!

posted in: embroidery, sewers aid, metallic threads, glass cup, vertical spool pin, metafil needles

Comments (6)

MARIETTAMorin35 writes: One understands that today's life is high priced, however different people require cash for different issues and not every man gets enough money. Thus to get fast mortgage loans and sba loan should be a right way out.
Posted: 7:32 am on September 19th
JenniferStern writes: I just loaded two pictures of the completed denim skirt! Thanks for all of the comments.
Jen
Posted: 6:09 pm on May 29th
krisamels writes: Your embroidery is gorgeous! I love the colors... would like to see the whole skirt! And your glass cup suggestion is excellent!
Posted: 4:32 pm on May 27th
ShiningStar writes: Thanks for the walk away rule. I'll remember that for my next troublesome project. I don't sew yet. I'm intrested in how you restyled a pair of jeans into a skirt. I can't wait to see the whole skirt the embroidery is gorgeous.
Posted: 2:26 pm on May 26th
JenniferStern writes: Thanks for the comment halfaperfectpair...Pictures should be coming along soon. It's featured in an upcoming downloadable project--you'll be able to make the whole skirt!
Posted: 11:22 am on May 23rd
halfaperfectpair writes: show us the finished product!! i'd love to see the whole skirt.
Posted: 4:05 pm on May 21st
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