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[Tips Discussion] How to get the best from metallic threads

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1#
Post time: 2009-5-26 01:17
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Metallic thread can add sparkly embellishment to any design -- and can be especially appropriate for festive occasions, outshining everything else with that extra shimmering touch.

Metallic threads can present certain challenges. Here are some tips that will help to keep your stitching trouble-free.

Needle Threading
One task that causes the most fraying when using metallic thread is when you have to thread the needle.  You should choose a needle with a larger eye so that it is easier to thread.  Also, you can try folding the thread over so it forms a loop and putting the end of the loop through the eye of the needle.
   
Use a Larger Needle
One type of thread known for unravelling is the chainette.  When the thread unravels it can leave unsightly threads dangling from the project.  Therefore, it is helpful to use a larger needle and a straight up and down motion with this type of metallic thread.  The up and down motion keeps the thread from being dragged across the fabric.  The larger needle creates a bigger hole so that there is less friction on the thread.  Less friction means less fraying.

Smoother Stitching
Consider buying Thread Heaven to keep the metallic thread smooth and prevent fraying.  If you cannot find the product at your local craft store you can also use a clear fingernail polish at the ends of the thread.

Stitch with Care
When you use metallic threads, stitch more slowly and more attentively, and use a needle big enough to open the hole in the fabric enough, so as to allow the thread to go through the hole easily. Stitch, using the 'stab' method -- working your stitches in two movements -- up vertically, and then down, vertically through the fabric.

Prevent Twisting Threads
Allow the needle to hang frequently from the fabric, so that the thread can untwist. Consider turning the needle to half-twist as you bring the needle out of the fabric, to prevent the thread from curling.

Save the Best for Last
Metallic threads add that special touch to any project.  If you want certain areas of your project to really stand out, metallic thread draws the eye to that area.  Yet the thread tends to be more challenging to work with, so you will want to save it for the last part of your cross stitch project.  This way all of your other work is done and you can minimize the friction on your metallic thread.  It will minimise fraying and add a polished finish to your project.

You can vary the amount of shine, too, by varying the amount of strands of metallic thread that you use. More strands produce more sheen.

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Number of participants 2Gold Coin +6 Collapse Reason
krystalina + 1 Thank you for your explanations
liz0222 + 5 Thanks for your tips!

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Post time: 2016-4-12 23:40
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i'm currently working on a project using metallic and satin flosses from DMC, and the loop method in threading really makes a great difference. It helps me work on it faster. Thanks for these tips.
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Post time: 2017-8-14 14:15
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Thank you for the tips. I am contemplating doing a project using these threads and will put these tips to good use!!!
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Post time: 2017-8-12 08:09
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Good ideas, thank you.  I'll be trying them for the first time soon.
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Post time: 2016-4-14 01:34
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I'm going to try  thread heaven, thanks for the tips
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Post time: 2017-8-29 13:23
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Thanks for  information
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2#
Post time: 2009-5-26 09:36
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I am really annoyed with the stitch of metallic threads and beads., but they make my work look more beautiful. Thanks for your tips! I can do with that.
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3#
Post time: 2009-6-18 00:25
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it is true. it is more difficult to work with metallics. thanks for the tips
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Post time: 2009-9-30 21:24
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I've never stitch with metallics, but many thanks for the tips
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5#
Post time: 2010-1-7 02:57
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I love using anything shiny in my stitching, sil, metallics, and beads all add so much to a finished piece.

Thanks for the great information
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6#
Post time: 2010-7-18 15:11
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I do stitch with metallic threads, I agree with all your recommendations.
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7#
Post time: 2010-7-18 16:04
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I like stitching with metallic threads and I use smaller thread length.
I did'nt know for the larger needle.  Thank you very much for this advise, I'll try next time
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8#
Post time: 2010-11-8 12:13
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Good tips.  I also agree with the posters who said use shorter lengths of thread.  That and making sure to let the thread untwist are the things that have always helped me.  I will try your other tips next time I stitch with metallics
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9#
Post time: 2011-1-22 18:55
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thank you for the tips
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Post time: 2011-1-23 20:58
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thanks for the tips
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