|Photo Credit - Maddie Kertay|
Thread is what it is all about when you run a longarm quilting machine. The quality of the thread can make a project sing or make the longarmer cry. There is very little in-between and sadly many who have longarm machines think that thread breaks, shredding and tension issues are just part and parcel of owning one of these beastly machines and I will have to admit that I was one of them.
While there were times when I would hit the magic sweet spot of right needle, thread, bobbin tension and the moon being in retrograde I will say that I have spent many frutrating hours trying to get my sttiches just right when I could have been quilting. That is not even taking about rethreading every 10-20 minutes when without warning the thread would fail.. frustrating, but again I thought it was part of the gig.
So many talked about only having to rethread 10 - 15- 20 times on a quilt top due to breakage that I counted myself lucky when I could do less than that.
And while I was really liked my machine I secretly wondered if it was it.. or maybe there was some ancient longarming secret that others knew since there were the few that seemed to have little to no trouble and they amazed me. Of course there were those times when everything went just right and the angels sang.. but the rest of the time they just hummed.
It was with great interest that I noticed the the company that made the magnetic bobbins for my commerical embroidery machine also did thread and bobbins for L and M sized longarms. I had long loved Maga-glide pre-wound bobbins for their high yardage count and smooth perfect tension performance so I was pretty jazzed to think I might get the same sort of performance at my longarm. Glide is a 40 wt. Trilobal Polyester making it thin enough for aggressive thread work but strong enough to hold up to active long arm play.
|Magna Glide Delights|
I started with a small order and was really extra excited to see that Fil-Tec not only had a huge selection of colors but also a subset of colors that had matching bobbins ( be still my beating heart) so that I could match or contrast the back in fronts of my quilts with colorful abandon.
Right away I will say that I am a sucker for a prewound bobbin. Yes they are about $1 each but with my M sized bobbins that means even the largest quilt is only going to use three of them. What is $3 for perfect tension and flawless performance?- chump change I say.
I could wish for more colors in the matched Delights series but I am told more Delights are in the works so I am delighted as well! Currently there are about 52 matching shades.
My order came quickly and soon I was swooning over some really luscious thread colors and matching pre-wound bobbins for all of them. To start with I got a grey and cream and a sweet shade of baby blue that is almost a grey as well. I also picked out a stunning thead set with an orchid, bronze and other wonderful colors in the larger sized cones.
Fil-Tec makes their thread in both minicones that have around 1000 yards and king cones with 5000 yards. This makes it easy to get all your basics in the bigger size and then go wild with fun colors in the small cones.
|Light Grey Glide on the back of Fans of Fall|
I had heard that some longarmers worry that the Gilde thread might have a bit too much soft shine or shimmer on some of the more traditional quilts they work on so I spent some time comparing and while in some colors you will have a more luminous appearance especially in high contrast situations, when I use the grey Glide thread on my two tone grey fabric the appearance was not at all distracting or "blingy". So while not the matte appearance of cotton I can't see me having an issue with this thread on most any quilt I will be working on.
|Totally invisible on the back of Nevermore|
In the end the proof was in the pudding as they say. The last three quilts I have done ( since my first order I have ordered quite a bit more thread!) I have had NO thread breaks and tension woes are a thing of my past! I can't say how wonderful this is and better yet the right thread has me back in love with my machine again and excited about future quilting projects.
Speaking of projects here are a few peaks at quilts I have done in the past couple of weeks!
|Fans of Fall - and original design by myself.|
|Sweet Summer made from vintage sheets.|
This has been a non-compensated product review - I am just sharing the love!