I did a review of quilting with Isacord in a post June 12, 2012 and mentioned a bit of problem using the thread and at the time wondered if it was just the color I chose to use – black. I have heard that black threads a lot of times do not behave like other colors in the same thread line because of the dying process/amount to get the black color. Has anyone else heard that about black thread? I decided to give it another try and am glad I did.This time I chose a medium gold colored thread. I made a few other changes when making my sample too. I did find out the weight of the thread is 40 wt., something I didn’t know when I posted about the other sample. First off I changed the needle size and type of needle from Topstitch to Quilting. For the black threaded one I used a size 12 topstitch needle and for the gold thread I used a 14 Quilting needle. I had different battings in the two samples – black thread had Bamboo Batting by Fairfield and the gold thread had Hobbs 80/20. The gold thread quilted like a dream and I am thinking changing the needle size is probably what made the biggest difference, even over changing the type of needle. After quilting more samples with lots of threads I have found I need to use a larger needle than what I might first think. I used to think that 14 size needles were so big and should use a size 12 for most threads but actually a lot of thread work best using size 14 needle. Another thing I did differently was to set the stitch length a little longer with the gold thread. The black was set at 1.8 and the gold at 2.0. The tension was kept at the default setting of 4.0 for the gold and 3.5 for the black. You can see the two samples side by side in the photo above. You probably can’t see much difference in a photo except the black shows more of the back tracking but I found quite a bit of difference when stitching.
I guess the moral to this story is that if one thread doesn’t work don’t discount the whole group but first make adjustments. Change out the needle, change tension, stitch length or batting to see if that makes a difference. You can also try another color if you get a chance too.