Sunday, September 1, 2013

APQS George and thread

George and I have been battling since he arrived a few weeks ago. Who was going to win the tension battle? I was starting to feel like a beginning quilter and rapidly losing my confidence that I would ever get rid of these railroad tracks that keep popping up on the back. But only in certain directions. I was convinced that George didn't like to go backwards and to the right. Tracks every time!

I've spoken with my APQS rep and done tons of tension research on the Internet. I should be an expert by now. I tried lowering the tension in the bobbin and tightening the top. My TOWA gauge has been working overtime. I would get the tension perfect, but every time I made a loop, there were always tracks in one section.

Connecting Threads cotton worked perfectly in my Jane. Unfortunately, George is too much of a machine for this cotton. I would get into a groove and then, snap! This was very depressing for me. I love that thread and I have all the spools now. And because it is only $2.50/spool, I was able to avoid charging for bobbin changes.

A fellow quilters gave me some Signature cotton thread and some PermaCore to try out. She had recently upgraded her machine and had tons of Signature thread that couldn't work in her new machine. She said she could give me a great deal. I was ecstatic! George doesn't care for either of these threads though.

Desperate, I called up APQS and talked to one of their service people. She was super friendly, with loads of great ideas for fixing my problem. She said she wasn't surprised that the Signature thread wouldn't work. She suggested So Fine by Superior Threads and Aurifil Mako cotton to satisfy traditionalist quilters who prefer cotton all around.

Success! There were samples of both of these threads that came with my new machine. George was quite happy with So Fine. And he loves the Aurifil. Of course, I had a heart attack when I realized how much these threads cost. The So Fine is $16.50/spool and then Aurifil is $35 for a large spool!!! So I won't be stocking up on these in advance, but steadily ordering a few spools here and there. I'm sorry folks, but the bobbin charge is back:( But don't worry, it is the standard $2/bobbin that most quilters in the area charge. I hate to do it, but I can't afford to provide free thread anymore.

So George and I have reached an agreement: I will provide him with copious amounts of expensive, high quality thread, and he will provide me with perfect tension and quilting satisfaction.

I have been working on a gorgeous 1/2" strip log cabin quilt all weekend and I can feel my confidence and enjoyment returning. Woo hoo!


  1. Sorry to hear you were having thread issues and glad you found threads that work better for you!

    I like the So Fine in both 50wt and 30wt, but don't get confused and order the wrong weight by mistake. They used to call the 30wt by a different name. I like to use it for my doodle quilting when I want the thread to show up. But otherwise, it's pretty thick.

    Superior has a Deal of the Day email, which might help with the price, if you can apply the deal to wholesale prices. You are gonna set up to get the wholesale price, right? Supposed to help a bunch.

  2. so glad you finally got some help on your tension issues. too bad you have to use such expensive thread.

  3. Have you ever heard of J. Hittle? I have gotten Aurifil from there before. I also bought some at the Vermont Quilt Festival and I thought I had bookmarked her website but can't find it now but she had good prices too. I love Aurifil thread and use it to piece and quilt with (on my sewing machine). Hope that helps a little bit.