Using Embroidery Thread for Sewing: Pros, Cons, & Essential Tips

Ever wondered if you can use embroidery thread for sewing? You’re not alone. It’s a common question that pops up in the minds of many sewing enthusiasts.

Embroidery thread and sewing thread may seem similar, but they’re designed for different purposes. Understanding their unique properties can help you make the right choice for your project.

Key Takeaways

  • Embroidery thread and sewing thread, while similar, are designed for different purposes and contain unique properties that make them suitable for specific uses.
  • Embroidery thread is typically glossier and thicker than sewing thread, providing a beautiful sheen and texture for embroidery artwork. It is made from various materials, including rayon, cotton, silk, and polyester, with each material providing its own unique texture and sheen.
  • Sewing thread, in contrast, typically has a matte appearance, is finer, and has more consistent thickness across materials. Important characteristics include durability, flexibility, and colorfastness to adapt with the fabric and last through regular use and washing. Common types include polyester, cotton, and nylon threads.
  • While both embroidery and sewing threads may appear similar, they have notable differences in their composition, characteristics, and usage – including sheen, thickness, and the materials used.
  • Using embroidery thread for sewing purposes is possible but depends on the specific project requirements. Embroidery thread is more suitable for decorative purposes due to its sheen and thickness, but may lack durability and colorfastness depending on the material, making it less ideal for projects that require heavy wear and tear or washing.
  • When using embroidery thread for sewing, it’s recommended to adjust your sewing machine’s tension appropriately and consider using a needle with a larger eye to prevent damage. Always consider your project’s requirements – its look, feel and durability – to make the best thread decision.

Understanding Embroidery Thread

Embroidery thread is an essential tool for any novice or experienced embroiderer. But what makes it unique, and why should you care about these details?

Embroidery thread differs from your typical sewing thread in several distinctive ways. It’s usually glossy and has a beautiful sheen, making your embroidery artwork pop and catch the eye. It’s also thicker, which helps in filling out the design more quickly and efficiently.

This thread is made with various materials, including rayon, cotton, silk, and polyester. What makes them stand out is how they’re twisted. The twist gives each thread its own unique texture and glossiness.

  • Rayon threads: they have a lustrous, high sheen finish, making them a favorite among many embroiderers.
  • Cotton threads: they are less shiny but very sturdy and reliable.
  • Silk threads: they are strong, shiny, and soft but also the most expensive type.
  • Polyester threads: they’re known for their durability and colorfastness, making them ideal for items that need frequent washing.

According to a report from Textile School, the average thickness of embroidery thread lies between 0.1 to 0.4 mm.

MaterialThickness (mm)
Rayon0.3 – 0.4
Cotton0.2 – 0.3
Silk0.15 – 0.25
Polyester0.1 – 0.2

Understanding Sewing Thread

Now that you’ve got some insights about embroidery thread, let’s dive deeper into its cousin – the sewing thread.

In contrast to the glossy finish of embroidery thread, sewing thread generally has a matte appearance. The sheen isn’t the only distinguishing factor. You’ll find that sewing thread is typically finer and comes with a more consistent thickness, which averages around 0.08 mm irrespective of the material used. Variations can be minimal. Your project’s success often depends on your selection and application of the right thread type for the job at hand.

Let’s break down some important characteristics of sewing threads:

  1. Durability: Sewing threads need to hold seams together, that’s why they ought to be strong. You can’t compromise on durability. Remember that the stress of regular wear and tear can cause weak threads to break and ruin your work.
  2. Flexibility: Being stiff isn’t a great quality for sewing threads. They need to be flexible enough to move with the fabric and prevent unnecessary tension.
  3. Colorfastness: This trait is important if you don’t want your thread to bleed color when washed or fade over time under sunlight.

In the realm of sewing thread types, you’ll come across polyester, cotton and nylon threads:

  • Polyester sewing threads: Known for their durability and colorfastness, you’ll find these threads hold up well in the washing machine. They’re a popular choice for many sewing projects.
  • Cotton sewing threads: These threads have a wonderful softness to them and blend seamlessly with cotton fabric. However, they might not be as durable or colorfast as polyester threads.
  • Nylon sewing threads: They’re renowned for their strength and elasticity, particularly suitable for sewing stretchy fabrics.

Knowing the qualities and types of sewing threads is key to mastering your sewing projects. With this knowledge, you’re better equipped to decide whether embroidery thread can fit the bill for your sewing needs. We’ll delve into that topic next, exploring the potential uses of embroidery thread in sewing.

Key Differences Between Embroidery Thread and Sewing Thread

Embroidery and sewing threads look similar but are very distinct in their composition, characteristics, and usage. It’s in these differences where you’ll find the answer to your question: can you use embroidery thread for sewing?

Embroidery thread achieves its lustrous appearance from its specific construction. It’s typically made up of several smaller threads, or plies, twisted together – a characteristic giving it its radiant sheen. Contrastingly, sewing thread with its more consistent thickness and matte finish is made of a single or double ply yarn. This difference creates a subtle yet significant visual contrast when used in projects.

The thickness of the thread is another notable difference. As previously mentioned, embroidery threads typically range from 0.1 to 0.4mm in diameter, allowing for a bold and robust presentation. On the other hand, sewing threads are much finer, around 0.08mm and are used for creating less noticeable, clean, and crisp seams.

When it comes to materials, both threads come in a variety of options – rayon, cotton, silk, polyester, and nylon. However, certain features are paramount when choosing a sewing thread – its durability, flexibility, and colorfastness. Sewing thread has to be strong and flexible to withstand the tension of sewing machines, as well as have good colorfastness as it’s frequently washed and exposed to various elements.

In contrast, sheen and thickness are more crucial for embroidery thread, enhancing the aesthetics of intricate designs. A common choice of thread for embroidery is rayon due to its high luster, however, polyester is renowned for its strength and colorfastness and is frequently used for sewing.

It could seem tempting to use these threads interchangeably considering their similar characteristics. However, understanding the intrinsic distinctions is crucial for successful sewing and embroidery projects. Recognize each thread’s unique features and select them appropriately for your projects.

Can You Use Embroidery Thread for Sewing?

The answer to whether you can use embroidery thread for sewing isn’t a simple yes or no. You need to account for what your project entails and understand the impact that different types of thread, such as embroidery and sewing thread, can have on the final product.

Embroidery thread, due to its sheen and thickness, is often utilized for decorative work. If you’re looking to add a touch of style to your project, then go right ahead – use the embroidery thread! Its vibrant colors and shiny appearance will certainly make your designs pop.

However, it’s important to remember that not all situations are ideal for using embroidery thread in sewing. Since this type of thread is less durable and might lack colorfastness depending on materials used, it may not be the best choice for items that need to endure heavy wear and tear or require washing.

Consider the differences in thickness as well. An embroidery thread thickness ranges from 0.1 to 0.4mm, while sewing thread is finer at about 0.08mm. Will the thickness of the embroidery thread impact the finished product?

Weigh these pros and cons before committing to using embroidery thread. Depending on your needs, sewing thread, with its durability and fineness, could prove a better option.

If the project you’re working on demands durability, like re-stitching a buttonhole or repairing a garment seam, then it’s better to stick with the traditional sewing thread. Sewing thread is designed for it, after all. It’s more cohesively built, has better colorfastness, and is just the right thickness to hold fabrics together.

In short, yes, you can use embroidery thread for sewing, but it ultimately depends on your specific project requirements. Tailor the choice of your thread to the needs of your sewing or embroidery project. This will guarantee a final product that not only looks good but is also fit for purpose.

Tips for Using Embroidery Thread in Sewing Projects

When it comes to using embroidery thread for sewing projects, it’s not as straightforward as swapping it out for standard sewing thread. There are a few tips and tricks to bear in mind.

First up, it’s important to note that embroidery thread is well favored for decorative work because of its sheen and thickness. If you want to add an extra touch of decadence to heavy upholstery or lux embroidery designs that’ll be the pièce de résistance, embroidery thread is the best choice.

One important aspect to consider is that embroidery thread isn’t as durable or colorfast as your robust sewing thread. So, for those projects requiring strength and longevity, you’d be better off sticking with sewing thread. This also rings true if your project involves a garment or fabric that’s frequently exposed to sunlight or washed often.

If you decide to go ahead with using embroidery thread in your sewing project, then make sure to adjust your sewing machine tension carefully. Embroidery thread is slicker, and often thicker, than regular sewing thread, which means you may encounter some issues with tension if it’s not correctly set.

Another helpful hint is to pair your embroidery thread with a needle that has a larger eye. This not only makes it easier to thread but it also helps prevent fraying or damage to the thread as it moves through the fabric.

Remember to keep in mind the project’s requirements while choosing your thread. The look, the feel, and the durability are the most significant factors to consider. Let these guide your decision and your sewing project is bound to be a masterpiece.

Remember, it’s not about using one over the other, it’s about using the right one for the job. Use this advice as a starting point and never stop exploring! Your sewing journey is bound to be both challenging and satisfying.

Using embroidery thread for sewing projects can offer both benefits and drawbacks, depending on the nature of your project and the materials involved. Embroidery threads are often more vibrant and have a sheen that regular sewing threads lack, making them ideal for decorative stitching. However, they can be more delicate and prone to fraying, requiring careful handling and specific techniques. Much like understanding the various types of veterinary jobs and salaries, knowing the pros and cons of embroidery thread can help you make informed decisions about your sewing projects. Whether you’re working on intricate designs or simple repairs, choosing the right thread is crucial for achieving the desired results.

When considering using embroidery thread for sewing, it’s essential to recognize the different techniques required compared to standard sewing thread. For example, a private practice chiropractor salary reflects the specialized skills and knowledge required in their field, similar to how embroidery requires specific expertise. Additionally, understanding the best majors for chiropractors can be akin to knowing the right tools and threads for different sewing tasks. If you’re a physician working under an independent contractor agreement, you might appreciate the importance of precision and attention to detail in both your profession and your sewing hobby. By mastering the essential tips for using embroidery thread, you can enhance your sewing projects and achieve professional-looking results.


So you’ve learned that embroidery thread can indeed be used for sewing. It’s perfect for decorative work with its glossy finish and thickness, but remember, it might not hold up as well as sewing thread in terms of durability and colorfastness. Don’t forget to tweak your sewing machine tension and opt for a needle with a larger eye when working with embroidery thread. Always keep your project’s needs in mind – the aesthetic, feel, and longevity – to ensure you’re choosing the best thread for the job. It’s all about making informed decisions for a successful sewing project. Now, armed with this knowledge, you’re ready to make your next project shine, whether you’re using embroidery thread for sewing or sticking to traditional sewing thread.

What is the main focus of the article?

This article provides detailed advice for utilizing embroidery thread in different sewing assignments. It covers factors such as durability, colorfastness, adjusting sewing machine tension, and choosing a needle with a large eye.

Is embroidery thread suitable for all sewing projects?

No, it’s not. Embroidery thread is perfect for decorative work due to its sheen and thickness. However, it may not be as resilient or colorfast as regular sewing thread for projects requiring strength and longevity.

What adjustments are recommended when using embroidery thread?

Adjusting the tension of the sewing machine and utilizing a needle with a larger eye are suggested practices when sewing with embroidery thread.

What key factors should be considered for a successful sewing project?

For a successful sewing project, consider requirements such as aesthetical look, tactile feel, and durability. The right choice of thread based on these factors can help achieve a desired outcome.