Water soluble thread is a terrific product for various purposes such as machine and hand basting, trapunto, appliqué, and heirloom sewing.

I especially like to use water soluble thread for basting quilts.

I prefer to pin baste my quilts on a table, but find working around the pins when I'm quilting to be a real pain.

So, after pin basting my quilt, I set my machine to a long basting stitch and stitch lines every 6" to 8" across the quilt in both directions using water soluble thread.  I remove the pins as I go. 

When I've finished stitching the grid, my quilt is completely stabilized but all the pins are gone.  I can now concentrate on my actual machine quilting without having to work around pins.

After I've completed all my quilting, I gently wash the entire quilt to remove my markings and the water soluble thread. I can dunk the quilt in the washer and lift it out and the water soluble thread is gone.

I prefer to use the thread in both the top and the bobbin. My favorite brand is Vanish-Extra which is made by Superior Threads.

Some people have said that they've had some trouble getting the Vanish-Extra to dissolve easily. So, Superior has designed another product, Vanish-Lite, which dissolves much easier.  It can be removed by spritzing with water so it isn't necessary to wash the entire quilt.

Vanish-Lite is also a finer thread so you'll get more on a spool for the same price. However, if you're basting on a high-speed long-arm machine, you'll want to stitch with Vanish-Extra.

Here are some of the advantages of basting with water soluble thread:

  • Grid basting stabilizes the quilt beautifully setting the straight grain of the quilt.

  • Grid lines wash away so you don't have lines where they're not wanted.

  • Grid basting with water soluble thread is a great opportunity to practice stitch-in-the-ditch knowing that the thread will wash away, taking mistakes along!

  • Getting rid of the pins allows you to concentrate on each area without distraction.

Check out the quilting detail on these quilts which were basted with water soluble thread:

  • Myrtle Creek Memories

  • Tea Time

Tip from Annie:

Be sure to keep any bobbin wound with this thread in a closed ziplock back along with the spool of thread. You don't want to accidentally sew something (like a swimsuit!) with it. Store in a dry place.

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Water Soluble Threads

  • Availability: In Stock

Item ID: SUP114

  • $6.75

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