The Rainbow Scrap Challenge colors for April were yellow and gold. I pulled out some scraps earlier in the month for on-going RSC projects and I wrapped up the month with some reproduction fabric scrappy appliqué.
The basket pattern is from Blackbird Designs - When the Cold Wind Blows. I've been using the design to practice machine appliqué techniques.
Inspired by a recent post by Barb (Fun with Barb), I decided to try using 100 weight polyester thread for machine appliqué. Barb had tried the thread for machine quilting, but I reasoned it might be good for machine appliqué as well.
Barb used Invisifil thread, a product from Wonderfil. The thread is advertised as "ultra-fine but surprisingly strong". I ordered some small spools of Invisifil in neutral colors to try on my basket blocks.
For stitching, I used a universal 65/9 needle and 50 wt Aurifil cotton thread in my bobbin. After I adjusted the tension a tiny bit, my machine was very happy with the new thread. In this example, the neutral thread worked well with the fabrics and seems to disappear, although the stitching line is fairly easy to see. What I like about the 100 weight thread is the matte finish.
I ordered my Invisifil thread from Red Rocks Thread, and while I was perusing the website I decided to see if there were any other 100 wt thread options. I wound up ordering a spool of Superior MicroQuilter 100 wt thread. The MicroQuilter thread is advertised as being very strong, but still good for invisible stitching.
The MicroQuilter thread performed just as easily in my machine; I used the same needle and bobbin thread. The stitching is more obvious in this example, but using a different color of thread might improve the "invisibility". Again, the matte finish is a plus. Both of these threads come in a multitude of colors, so getting a close match is possible.
For comparison, I went back and photographed the stitching on an early basket. This block was stitched with invisible nylon monofilament thread (YLI brand, but others are available). The nylon thread is good for recreating the look of hand appliqué, but the thread does have a glossy look.
OK, now that I've bored you with all my thread experiments, go over to the weekly Rainbow Scrap link-up for some scrappy inspiration!