Thursday, May 2, 2013

I've Been Quilting and a Sigma Thread Review

I've been quilting, and I've actually even finished a few projects over the last few days but none that I can show here.  :(  I love to share too so it is really  hard for me having to keep my mouth shut!  Here's a little snippet of the project I showed you a few posts ago...


It's finished, but there are a few places I need to remove some more of the blue water soluble pen marks.  I bound it yesterday and today I'm going to take some pictures outside.  I will be sharing the full quilt with you in about a week!

I am participating in another Sew We Quilt blog hop that I wanted to mention too.  It begins on May 7th and the theme is "For the Birds".  It should be a lot of fun so stop and visit!  My day is May 9th...and I'm excited to see all the projects.  The Dare to Dresden blog hop was filled with an amazing amount of creativity, I expect no less from this hop!

In the mean time I wanted to do a little thread review as I haven't done one of those in a while!  I am still in love with thread and still experimenting with it - but I have been so busy that I have neglected to post about  here as I had promised.  After reading about this thread company on one of my long arm quilting forums I decided I wanted to try Sigma thread by Metro Embroidery.  I don't know why we don't hear about this brand more.  I don't think they advertise heavily like some of the other thread companies do.


In any case I bought this little batch of six to experiment with and see if I like it.  Metro has two thread "brands" that it carries.  Metro and Sigma.  Metro is the original thread and it is a 2 ply 40 wt. polyester thread marketed for embroidery.  Then there is Sigma, also 2 ply and 40 wt. polyester.  I'm not exactly sure what the difference is, but Sigma was created for high speed embroidery machines so they advertise it as having a higher tensile strength than the Metro.  Because I bought this for use in my long arm and I had heard some issues with Metro breaking I picked up the Sigma.


I have used this thread on half a dozen or so quilts now, and quilted projects.  I like it a lot for a heavier polyester thread.  I discovered it is nearly identical to Isacord - the thread that famous Leah Day raves about using as her thread of choice.  Here is a side by side of an Isacord and a Sigma 5000 meter cone...


The ONLY difference that I can tell from sewing with and feeling Isacord versus Sigma, is that Isacord almost feels more conditioned than the Sigma.  I don't know if there is a process used to condition the thread for manufacturing purposes (by that I'm guessing maybe, possibly for winding onto the cones) but the Isacord does have a nicer feel...but it's very subtle.


If they are virtually identical why might one want to use the Sigma over Isacord?  Well, cost is probably the biggest reason.  Isacord runs about $13 for a 5000 meter cone while Sigma is $2.75 for a 5000 meter cone.  They also sell small 1000 meter mini cones for use on your home sewing machine for about $.89 per cone versus $3.95 from Isacord.


A little tip - if you plan to use the Sigma on your home sewing machine with a thread stand it would be worth it to buy a package of these little net socks that fit over your cone.  The Sigma tends to come off of the cone faster than my machine can sew with it causing lots of nasty little jams.  This allows the thread to come nice and smoothly off the cone without getting kinked up.  They are available at Superior Threads for just a few bucks - I think I paid $3.89 or something comparable for a package of these.

All in all - I think this thread is pretty decent.  I am discovering that I like a thin thread over these chunky polyesters that I used to swoon for.  So I don't know if I will be ordering a lot more of these in the future.  To date my favorite thread has been...brace yourself...Superior Threads So Fine!  Lol*  It just looks so great with the style of quilting that I enjoy doing and their website makes shopping with them so easy.  I hear that Aurifil has created a polyester thread for long arm quilting machines though - so it's definitely on the list to check out.

***I just want to reiterate that I am not affiliated with any thread company, anywhere.  I'm just a thread junkie who loves to try everything!  I pay retail prices for much of my thread and I'm partial to polyesters because they are so much kinder on my long arm quilting machine.***


8 comments:

Bonnie said...

Valerie, I love your review! Isacord is one of the staples in my repertoire so I'm glad you did the comparison of Sigma to Isacord. I have heard it is also like Glide (which I don't like!). Do you know how it compares?

Andrea said...

Hi Valerie, great review, I'm still considering picking up a few of these to try. A brand to try - Wonderfil thread. The warehouse is here in Calgary, and I've been using their cotton 50wt..it runs beautifully (so far) that I'm afraid to try other brands because my tension is so good right now ;-)

Needled Mom said...

I really enjoyed this review. I have not tried the Sigma, but it definitely sounds like it is a god price. Your quilting looks gorgeous. I like the So Fine too and use it a lot.

patchouli moon studio said...

Thanks for the review. I have a semi-industrial machine and not a long arm, but I like to quilt with Isacord and I bought a cheaper brand that works just as well. I haven't heard of the brand you mentioned. I also bought my polyester thread on the large cones and so I won't need thread for a long time, but I do use the neutral colors more like white, black and off-white, so may need to buy those sooner.

Jen said...

Thanks for this review! And your quilting is beautiful! You almost read my mind as I was getting ready to order some of the Metro thread to try. I've used it to machine embroider on my home machine with zero problems so far and it's a newer high speed. I wonder which would feel softer, their original Metro or their newer Sigma line?

Jen said...

Hi again, After posting above, I got curious and wrote the kind folks at Metro . To answer my question comparing their two thread lines, they describe their Metro line as softer than their Sigma line so perhaps the Metro is even closer to the Isacord?

Valerie the Pumpkin Patch Quilter said...

Hi Jen! I did receive your comment and I apologize for not responding - you are a no-reply blogger so unfortunately it's difficult for me to get back with you quickly! Yes, metro is definitely the softer of the two threads...but I would still say that Sigma is more like Isacord. Isacord and Sigma are three ply threads while I believe Metro is a two ply thread. If you have ever used Glide in the past, I would compare Metro to Glide rather than Isacord. I hope that is helpful! If you would like to email me directly I would be happy to answer any further questions you might have! :)

Valerie the Pumpkin Patch Quilter said...

Just thought I would add - if you're looking for strength I would go with Sigma...but that is really the only reason I would pick it over Metro. Metro has a large selection of threads and I do like the feel better...but being that I use a non-stitch regulated long arm machine it is beneficial to me to have the stronger thread that will hold up to faster sewing speeds. :)