What Type Of Thread Is Used For Embroidery

Embroidery threads can be found in a wide range of fibers, color, texture and weight, when choosing a thread for your embroidery project, it will depend on what type of fabric you will be working with and the type of embroidery you will be doing.

What Type Of Thread Is Used For Embroidery? Embroidery floss is the most common thread used for many different embroidery works, but there are more thread options to use on your project like: pearl cotton, silk, wool or other types of threads, which they will make your work stand out and will give different texture to your embroidery.

Embroidery Floss

Embroidery Floss is made of 6 strands of thread through the skein, and you can decide how many threads to use on your project, one thread for making thin lines, and two or three strands to fill up an area with small or long stitches, when working on cross stitch projects, you might need to use two, three or even more strands of thread in your needle.

Related post: Is Washing Embroidery Floss Before Stitching Necessary?

Pearl Cotton

Pearl Cotton is made of one strand of thread, it’s thicker and heavier, it can be found in different weights. When you look close at the strand, you will notice the strand is made of two strands twisted together, and it’s made to be used like that, do not separate it.

To learn more about how to decide which Pearl Cotton you should use for your project, this thread is made so that the higher the number, thinner the thread will be.

Pearl Cotton can be used on many different embroidery projects, back stitch or redwork.

Silk Threads

Silk Threads comes in a wide array of bright colors, this thread is used on fine embroidery work, always use a short thread on your needle as it tends to tangle and fray with ease, it will require you to work with tiny stitches and it will require more time to finish any embroidery project.

Embroidery projects made with silk threads are highly appreciated and this thread can also be used in projects made with other types of threads to add some shine and highlights on the project.

Wool Threads

Wool threads are made of two-ply strand of natural wool, it can be used in different types of embroidery like: needle point, crewel, tapestry, wool embroidery, cross stitch and others. Use a single strand of wool on your needle and it can be used for different types of stitches, it will cover more area on your project, and it can also be used with other types of embroidery thread on the same project.

Metallic Threads

Metallic threads are often used on embroidery threads to give some highlights to the work, it can also be used on a whole embroidery project. Metallic threads can be a challenge for new embroidery hobbiest and artist as it tends to tangle, tarnish and snag and even frays, for this reason always use a short thread in your needle and work slow on your project.

Satin And Rayon Threads

Rayon Threads can be also used for embroidery projects, it’s made with an attractive sheen and bright colors, and it can be used on different types of embroidery, but it can be difficult to thread a needle and to work with it as it tends to make knots and tangle with ease. To avoid this thread from tangling often, work with short threads, and it can be also slightly dampened with a wet sponge to moisturize the thread.

Overdyed Threads

Overdyed threads are pretty much the same type of thread as embroidery floss, and this type of thread is made as its name says with different colors. It can be confused with the Variagated Thread which are also known as space-dyed-color threads.


Ribbon is not a thread, but it can be used to do some embroidery, I must add that the type of ribbon used for embroidery is made for this purpose, it can be made of silk, rayon or cotton, it’s soft and it comes in a wide array of color, where you can choose one for your project. The embroidery made with ribbon is made different from other types of embroidery but it adds texture to any project.

What Embroidery Thread To Use On Your Project?

Every embroidery project will come with the instructions about what type of thread should be used to make it, in general I would say, always go with the instructions that comes with your project, or follow the instruction the embroidery teacher tells you.

When starting to work on an embroidery project by yourself, you might want to work on a sample first and then some different types of thread making the same stitches, it will show how each thread works and how the stitches look, from the sample you can decide which type of thread will work better for your work.

As you keep doing more embroidery projects, you will get to know more about the different types of thread for each type of embroidery stitches you like to use, after some time, you will become skilled enough to know what type of thread to use for your new embroidery projects.

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What Type Of Thread Is Used For Embroidery