Links to Sewing Supplies
Copyright 2005 Ronald B. Standler
Table of Contents
Pfaff sewing machines
There are different measurements for sizes of sewing needles in metric and American (i.e., Singer Sewing Machine Company) practices:
The diameter of the needle in millimeters × 100 is the metric size, so a size 65 needle has a diameter of 0.65 mm.
The relationship of one American size per 0.05 mm is true only from 0.6 mm to 1.1 mm.
|metric ||60 ||70 ||80 ||90 ||100 ||110 ||120 |
|american ||8 ||10 ||12 ||14 ||16 ||18 ||19 |
reissfestes Garn = extra-strong thread
I routinely use extra-strong 100% polyester thread:
Gütermann and Madeira recommend needle size at least 100 with extra-strong thread,
while Mettler recommends at least size 90.
- Gütermann M782 (100-meter spools)
- Mettler Nr. 8290 (125-meter spools)
- Madeira Nr. 35 Aerofil
(fifty colors on 100-meter spools)
(black, white, red, five other basic colors on 300-meter spools)
There are two kinds of thread that are even stronger than the above-mentioned
- thread intended for buttonholes and top-stitching
(in German: "Knopfloch- und Zierstich-fäden") that is sold:
Gütermann recommends needle size 120 with top-stitching thread,
while Mettler recommends at least size 110. Alternatively, instead of using a
Universal or Jeans needle, one can use a special Topstitching needle that has a large eye
on a smaller shank (e.g., sizes 70, 80, or 90).
- Gütermann catalog-Nr. M1003 (30-meter spools)
- Mettler Cordonnet catalog-Nr. 9146 (50-meter spools)
- When sewing heavy-duty (e.g., 1000 denier) nylon fabric, I have had good results with
Coats Upholstery thread, which is 100% nylon, on 150 yard spools.
Coats recommends a size 110 needle with this thread.
Notions = Nähzubehör
Notions (e.g., thread, needles, buttons, etc.) are called Nähzubehör in German.
Wright's ribbon, also has bias tapes for sewing over edges of fabric to prevent fraying.
Ribbon Factory fluorescent double-face satin
I tend to use heavy-duty fabrics. For example, I made a book bag out of Cordura® 1000 denier nylon fabric that lasted
through three years of law school with virtually no detectable wear, while many of my classmates purchased a new book bag every year.
I made a car seat cover and a bedspread from cotton duck cloth, a light-weight canvas. These kinds of fabrics are not sold
in local fabric stores, whose customers mostly make clothing, curtains, etc.
American fabric stores give the density of the fabrics in "ounces per square yard", which is often — and improperly —
shortened to "oz." To obtain the density in grams per square meter, multiply "oz/yd2" by 33.8
Since December 1993, I ordered most of my fabric from
Rainshed in Corvallis, Oregon.
They are a small, friendly store that specializes in fabrics for outdoor use.
The importers for Gütermann, Mettler, and Madeira threads do not import into the USA
the full range of their threads. Also, some sizes and types of Schmetz needles are difficult
to find in the USA. For these reasons, I sometimes order from a store in Germany.
I have ordered from Faden Versand in Germany,
which has Gütermann, Mettler, and Madeira thread (including Madeira Aerofil Nr. 35
and Madeira Polyneon Nr. 40 on 400-m spools), and Schmetz needles.
With Euro 30 (about US$34 in Nov 2016) shipping cost outside Germany,
this is an expensive way to get exactly what you want.
There are four large stores for sewing supplies in the USA:
- Jo-Ann has fabric, some Gütermann thread
- Nancy's Notions in Wisconsin
- In 2012 Clotilde merged with Annie's Craft Store in Texas
There are many small mail-order notion stores that sometimes
have a better selection of specialty needles or thread than large stores.
In the USA:
- Nähpark in Germany has a complete range of
Gütermann, Mettler, and Madeira threads and popular sizes of Schmetz needles,
but they only send packages to Germany, Austria, and Switzerland — not the USA.
- nadel24.de in Germany has Madeira Aerofil Nr.35 thread, Schmetz needles, etc.
- Brewer in Illinois sells Mettler & Gütermann thread,
but only sold in multiples of five spools, as well as Schmetz needles.
- Create for Less in Oregon has top-stitching and extra-strong threads from Gütermann and Mettler,
but only sold in multiples of five spools of one color.
- Erica's in Indiana has Gütermann top-stitching and extra-strong threads
- Madeira in the USA has online ordering for embroidery thread, but they do not import Madeira Aerofil thread.
- Red Rock Threads in Nevada has Gütermann and Mettler threads
- Euro-Notions in Florida sells Schmetz needles
- Sewing Supply Warehouse in Florida has Schmetz needles and Metrosene thread
- Uncommon Thread in South Carolina has Mettler top-stitching and many other Mettler threads
The following fabric stores have interesting websites,
but I have not ordered from them:
- Identi-Tape in Colorado
sells 3M vinyl reflective material.
I have sewn on fabric: 3M 6187R (yellow) and 6196R (red) with a width of two inches.
- Jeffrey Lausten in New York State,
sells reflective fabric and reflective vinyl sew-on tape.
- Alain Pelletier
ships 3M reflective tape from Maine
The following stores have closed-cell Neoprene and polyethylene foams,
used for cushioning delicate objects:
webpage created 9 Sep 2005, revised 21 April 2020
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