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Embroidery Machines

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Melissa Halpain posted on Sun, Aug 25 2013 4:39 PM

Hi everyone - I have been looking into buying an embroidery machine. I have been doing a lot of research on them but I still haven't decided which one. My question is: how much thread do you all go through. It just now occurred to me that it must be quite a lot of thread. Maybe I will rethink this. If it just goes through so much thread I wouldn't be saving much money by doing it myself. The web sites don't discuss the average amount of thread per project.

Thanks in advance for  any help you can give me.

Georgetown CA I'd Rather Be Quilting

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Roxana replied on Sun, Aug 25 2013 4:46 PM

Melissa, what type of embroidering are you planning on doing?

Some designs don't use much thread at all since you use a separate bobbin thread. .... Lace ornaments or lace dimensional structures can take a lot of thread since you use the same thread in the bobbin. .... Other than lace, I use very little of my thread off a spool but I'm still new to embroidery.

Applique on the embroidery machine is wonderful!

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Hmmm, going though...or having on hand?  Most embroidery designs need multiple shades/tones for most  thread colors to give dimension and depth to the design.  For example, it is not uncommon to use 4 or 5 different shades of pink in a stitch out of a rose...along with 3 or 4 shades of green for the leaves and possibly a few shades of brown for the stems.   

As Roxana said, you can use the same bobbin thread for all of these, but having a large variety of thread colors on hand for the design is the most important thing.  

In terms of volume, the thread seems to go a long way as often you only need a color for a highlight or accent to another color.  You quickly learn what colors you use the most and can buy larger spools or those to save $$$.

 Winthrop, WA

 

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Hi Melissa

I was at the quilt show in Monroeville Pa yesterday saw some embroidery machines there. I was very impressed with the Brother Innovis (I think I spelled that right) The quality I saw and most importantly the size of the hoop were very good.  I have a singer ce250 sewing embroidery that connects to the computer and the largest hoop is only 10x6. If I could afford one of the other ones I would definitely be looking into hoop size. There is so much you can do with the machines.  I bought thread on sale watching Joann fabric and other places and build like a stash of fabric. it seems to me some patterns take more thread depending on who created the embroidery pattern. I know  this doesn't address thread much but it did not seem that anyone machine used any more thread than the other. Also I don't know if you have a longarm machine or not but at one of the displays booths I saw paintings done on a longarm that were fabulous and looked better than the embroidery machines. We took pix where allowed but didn't take pix of that. It was done free motion and was a pix of a beautiful dragon. Fabulous thread coverage. 

Kerry G

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Lisa replied on Sun, Aug 25 2013 5:31 PM

Hi Melissa!  I am fairly new to embroidery and am starting out with a Brother PE 780.  Had I known all of the fun I could have with a larger hoop I would have waited and saved up more money for a Brother sewing/embroidery machine with a 6x10 hoop.  My plan is to upgrade to a Brother Dream Weaver next fall.

As far as thread is concerned I like to use Maderia polyneon 40 thread.  You can purchase color kits that contain 12 different shades of a particular color from their website.  They run about $45 per  storage case. Our quilt shop has a Color of the Month program that I took advantage of and quickly built up my thread collection.  Great quality thread you can get in a spool or cone for frequently used colors. ( I like to keep a cone of black and white on hand)

Go to your local sewing machine dealer and ask about their machines and try them out if you can.  Your dealer will be more than happy to help you select a machine that fits your budget and your needs.

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After re-reading your question, the average amount of thread per project depends on the stitch density of the project.  For example, a red-work type design (that looks similar to hand embroidery) will not need nearly as much thread as fully embroidered designs.

Usually, when you look at a design, it will tell you how many stitches are required to stitch the whole design (but, not necessarily how many stitches per color).  That will give you an idea of the stitch density of the design and the overall amount of thread you will need for the design.

Red-work Design:  (less thread required)

Art Nouveau Blossom Corner

Full Embroidery Design:  (more thread required)

Rose with Stem

 

Hope these examples help a bit.  

This is one of those things that you learn best just by doing it.  

 

 

 Winthrop, WA

 

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Thank you all so much for your response. I have been looking at a Brother. Now that I have read your responses, they all make sense to me now. Should have asked at my LQS. They sell Brother and Husqavarna (spelling?).  Maybe they will let me test drive some. mmmm

Again, thank you for the responses.

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Roxana replied on Sun, Aug 25 2013 6:20 PM

Melissa, my machine is a Bernina and I love it. I also think hoop size is important when you purchase your machine. I only use Isacord embroidery thread but have found as the others said that there are certain colors I use more than others. You can also find thread on the Internet in sets of basic colors or build your own sets.

Density is important as to how much thread you use.

 

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Nana replied on Sun, Aug 25 2013 7:33 PM

Melissa

There are some designs that I have used one spool of thread and been able to do the same design over and over numerous times.   There are other designs that I have done that used almost the whole spool.  It just depends on the size and density of the design.  I love my embroidery machine and actually upgraded machines just to get the biggest embroidery hoop on the market....LOL>

Vinton, Virginia

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ldstout replied on Mon, Aug 26 2013 10:17 PM

I have two Brothers and a Happy 12 needle which I love for bigger items like bags jackets.As far as just a reg. embroidery machine to just can't do better than brother Thats just my two cents worth. ld stout.

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Nana replied on Tue, Aug 27 2013 12:57 AM

I love my Pfaff for embroidery.  It is user friendly and stitches out designs beautifully.

By the way has anyone seen the ads for the new Janome 15000 that comes out Oct 1.   Oh my it looks awesome.

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Answered (Not Verified) eparys replied on Tue, Aug 27 2013 6:30 AM
Suggested by Quiltless

Hi Melissa - 

Thread use and the design stitch count goes hand in hand. Several members have already commented that the usage varies. The more "dense" the design the more thread. Thread is but a small cost of owning one of these. There are the stabilizers and designs as well which can both be pricey. Although I have used many designs from the online shops just fine the expensive designs such as Jenny Haskins, Viking and OESD are a dream to stitch out. 

As far as Machines go - you will have as many opinions and there are members - lol!!  I would suggest that you make a list of items that are important for you. Size of Embroidery design, available hoops sizes(what comes with the machine what is available separately), Needle threader, Computer connection, Price etc.and go and look at and try out as many as you can. And then .. do you want a Computer program to see them or modify them?

I worked for a Viking/Husquavarna for a few years and they made nice embroidery machines. I have owned a Babylock and loved the ease with which it stitched and now have Pfaff which I love. One side comment - Both the Husquavarna and the Pfaff have (from my experience) seem to prefer name brand embroidery thread. I had purchased, back when I had the Babylock,  from Ebay one of these deals where you get 50 spools of embroidery thread  - the Babylock did great on it bu it does not work well on my Pfaff (keeps breaking).

Good luck with your search - also consider a used machine. My Pfaff I bought off of a Craigslist ad.

Betty 

A quilt will warm the heart.

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Betty and Nana - Thanks so much for the info. I checked out the Husquavarna at my LQS yesterday. I got so much information from them also. I still want to check out the Brother machines also. Thank you all again for all the information you have given.

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Melissa,

Don't forget to look at the Bernina machines. They are work  horses. I have an 830 but i hear the 700 series is great.  

aka Grandma Sunshine

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Donna B replied on Tue, Aug 27 2013 11:21 AM

I'll second that!  I have two...because I couldn't part with my 200E when I bought my 830LE.  I love them both!

And Maggie is right, they are workhorses.  They are Swiss built and it shows!  I believe Bernina is one of, if not the last, domestic sewing machine to still be built by the parent company (not sub-contracted out, usually to asian companies).

They are pricey, but the quality is there to support it.  As Maggie has said, the 700 Series is great and it was Bernina's effort to offer most of the 830's features at a more affordable price.  It is really worth looking at if you have a dealer any where near you.

 Winthrop, WA

 

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