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Free motion Machine quilting


First came the frustration – lots of it!  I have a Husqvarna sewing machine; actually I have two. The first was purchased in 1991 as a Christmas gift to me from Steve. I love that machine. But, after 17 years of service, too many quilts to count, and a new motor, we decided it was time to buy a new machine. I loved my Husqvarna so much, I bought another.  And that’s where my trouble began.

On my old machine, I could do a fair free motion quilting stitch. On the new machine, I could not replicate even my ‘fair’ stitching. My stitches would skip anytime I was stitching sideways or backwards which meant I’d have a few stitches coming down the front of a curly Q and then a long piece of thread where the back of the curly Q was supposed to be and then stitches down the next and so on.  Then, after sewing for about 30 seconds or so, the thread would break altogether.

  I took the machine back to the shop, I bought new needles, I put the same thread top and bottom, I changed tension, I took classes….. I talked to a couple of Husqvarna vendors who told me that particular machine didn’t do free motion very well and I should buy another machine just for my quilting.

Not long ago, I vented my frustration to the owner of the store where I bought the machine. I was basically asking how much I could get on a trade in… Norm, the owner,  is very knowledgable. He asked me what thread I was using and I told him Coats and Clark.   Coats and Clark thread has been my ‘go-to’ thread for almost 30 years. I’ve found it to be a reasonable choice among the threads available on the market. 

Norm said that Coats and Clark thread has changed their manufacturing process and that the thread stretches as it goes through the machine – especially when doing free motion quilting or thread sketching.   Hmmmm, I said.  They said my machine would do what I was wanting to do if I put the “right” thread in it. Hmmmm, I said again….. thread can be pretty pricey.

So…. I bought a few spools of King Tut thread and wound some bobbins, and threaded my machine. I sat down to try once more and to my utter amazement, I stitched forward and back, round and round, and no skipped stitches, no long pieces of thread, and NO BREAKAGE!!!! I actually sat and did free motion quilting for about an hour and got a lot done!

So now I know King Tut works well.  I have one spool of Aurifil thread that I want to try. My good friend,Susan Brubaker Knapp , is an Aurifil Expert and highly recommends their thread. 

I guess I’m off to purge OLD thread and to separate my Coats and Clark from the other brands.


About delanequilts

Full time wife, mother, grandmother; friend to many; crazy aunt to a few. Avid lover of reading; 'making something from nothing'; karate! (Tang Soo!); nature and gardening though trying to cut back on time spent pulling weeds! Lover of essential oils!

4 responses »

  1. I didn’t know that Coats and Clark was still your go-to thread. King Tut is gorgeous. Still have yet to try Aurofil tho. Glad things are going vroom-vroom for you now.

  2. I’ve used Coats and Clark since I was in my early 20’s. It still does well for piecing and basic sewing.

  3. OMG!!! It is my thread!!!??? I’m going to try new thread next week after we meet. I will buy some on my way home. Thread. Who would have thought!

  4. Who would have thought? I got 5 spools of thread tonight – almost $45 bill!!! YIKES!


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