Thread Color for Machine Quilting

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I’m learning to use your quilting methods on my longarm machine. They are very clear and well done, thank you so much.

My question is: You suggest always using the same thread on the bobbin as well as the top to eliminate the bottom thread showing up at any time on the top, and as well you suggest changing threads on top with the different color changes of the piecing. It all looks great, but does that mean we change the bottom thread each time we change the top thread? This is a lot more work on a longarm, but it is possible. Some of your samples show many different thread colors on a small pieced top.



Submitted by Paulette


NQC Answer

Hi Paulette,

Yes, I do change the thread color a lot, both top and bottom. However, with a long arm machine – which is made for machine quilting only – the tolerances should be better and you should have less chance of tension issues.

If you’re confident that the bobbin thread will not draw up to the top, choose just one color of thread that is a TONE and a medium value. An example would be: if you’re going to quilt the top with a mixture of bright greens, blues, and violets, choose a dull, medium valued blue for the bobbin. For more of my tips and design ideas on free motion quilting, you might want to check out my latest class, Fabulous Free Motion Quilting. Hope this helps and happy quilting,

Heather

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Discussion
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4 Responses to “Thread Color for Machine Quilting”
  1. Jacqueline Bonnier

    I have a Bernina 750 QE since a few years ago. I quilt much, but I have never had the answer on my question : do I have to lower the tension for free hand quilting. Normaly I put it on 2 in stead of 5, but I don’t know if it “must” or “may not”. Thank you for an answer. I will certainly note it, and work like you advise me
    Jacqueline Bonnier

    Reply
    • Customer Service

      Hello Jacqueline,

      This depends on your machine and you. Some people find that they have to adjust their tension when free motion quilting because they are not getting good stitch quality when they are moving the fabric under the needle. I recommend test stitching on a small quilt sandwich sample to see if your stitches are balanced. If they are, you may not need to make any adjustments, however if they are are not- try adjusting the tension and see if that helps.

      Cheers,

      Ashley
      National Quilters Circle Video Membership

      Reply
  2. Apple

    A question on labelling quilts, what is required to be put on the label. I have been looking everywhere and hope you can help. I see name of quilt, year, etc but is there anything else you have to put on especially for exhibitions? This is probably the wrong place to ask but I came across your fb page and thought you might be able to help. Thank you

    Reply
    • Customer Service

      Hello Apple,

      If you are labeling your quilt for you or whoever you are giving a quilt to, then you can put whatever you’d like on it: The quilt name, your name, year complete, etc. If you are labeling your quilt for a show or exhibition, the specific show or exhibition you are sending it to or entering it in should have a submission guidelines that will tell you what needs to be on your quilt.

      Cheers,

      Ashley
      National Quilters Circle Video Membership

      We’d love to have you be a part of our community. We are convinced you will enjoy the benefits of becoming a member and having access to the best instructional how to videos and professional tips. We would like to offer you a special promotion for your first year membership.
      https://go.nationalquilterscircle.com/C12787

      Reply