May 09, 2019

Why I love Aurifil Thread | 2019 Aurifil Artisan

Why I love Aurifil Thread | 2019 Aurifil Artisan | Shannon Fraser Designs

When I first started sewing and quilting, I never really gave much thought to my thread. In fact, I discounted it all together and just focused on what was readily available at my local big box fabric store and whether the colour matched my project.

Then I heard it mentioned that thread is the glue that keeps your project together. And something clicked for me; I’ve never seen thread in the same way since!

From that point on, I’ve been on the hunt to find the best threads.

Being a part of the quilting community on Instagram, I kept hearing about a company called Aurifil Threads. Based in Italy, I thought I would have a tough time sourcing them here in Montreal. But I was super lucky to discover that my fellow Montreal Modern Quilt Guild member, Stacy, had them in her store Craft de Ville

I decided to start off slow with one spool of their 50wt thread in #2021 natural white. Since I piece my quilts with white, I figured this was the best place to start. Now, I was a little taken aback by the price. Having previously looked for the cheapest thread available, I was naturally a little shocked. Not that it’s that much more expensive (more on that in a minute), but since I typically like to save my quilty dollars for fabric, every little bit counts.

I should know better by now that quality isn’t cheap. In fact, there’s usually a reason why well-made products are more expensive. And once I started piecing with the 50wt, I immediately saw and felt a difference.

First off, the 50wt is way less linty than other brands I’ve tried. This is super important for the health of your sewing machine. Lint is not their friend and you want to limit dust and lint as much as possible.

Second, I’ve had WAY less tension issues since switching. Not sure why this is, but my Juki loves this thread and the tension issues I used to experience have been a thing of the past since making the switch.

Third, I love the feel of the thread. There’s a slight sheen to it and it feels strong. Qualities you definitely want in your thread.

Quilting threads | Why I love Aurifil | Shannon Fraser Designs

Fourth, the spools are never ending! Seriously! Which brings me back to cost. There is a good amount of thread on that 1300m spool (AKA the large spools). I know changing your spool is no big deal, but since I’m constantly piecing, I don’t want to be constantly looking up to see how much thread I have left. This felt like the never-ending spool! So, in the end, I would say the price differential is not as great as I initially thought. When you cost it out by the meter, it’s actually a minor difference (I did the math!).

My first trial was so positive, that once my first spool ran out, I quickly switched to the cones! And those suckers last and last and last. My first cone saw me through about a year and half of quilty projects – both piecing and quilting. I recently bought my second one!

Aurifil Threads | Shannon Fraser Designs

And, finally, have you seen the colours it comes in?! I love that I can perfectly match my projects to my thread! This is very important to me to have a wide array of options to suit my current project. Whether I’m looking to go matchy-matchy or whether I want a nice contrasting pop, I’ve never found myself saying “dang, I wish they had this colour”.

Colorful Aurifil Threads | 2019 Aurifil Artisan | Shannon Fraser Designs

After my first experience with 50wt, I got curious! And started exploring their different thread weights. Now I find myself using their 40wt and, more recently, their 28wt for my quilting. I love the added dimension these thicker threads provide.

I know a lot of quilters love using Dove for their piecing, but I've found myself loving it for my quilting! I picked it up in 28wt and have used it in no less than 3 quilts already!

Modern Aztec Quilt | Shannon Fraser Designs

This is the Mod-Rose Modern Aztec quilt using 28wt Aurifil Thread in Dove. The Modern Aztec pattern is available for instant download in the shop.

Irish Vortex Quilt | Shannon Fraser Designs

This one is more streamlined with simple straight line quilting using 28wt thread in Dove on my Irish Vortex quilt.

Close up of organic quilting on scrappy Irish Vortex Quilt | Shannon Fraser Designs

And here's a scrappy version using the Irish Vortex quilt pattern. Here I opted for organic wavy quilting, which adds amazing texture and is super fun to quilt too!

You also know how much I love hand quilting and I’ve used their 12wt in several projects. My most epic (and still a work in progress) is my Dresden Plate quilt that I’m entirely quilting by hand. Since the quilt features Kona Cottons with water names, I thought it was perfectly fitting to go with their variegated thread in #4655 called Storm at Sea!

Hand quilting Blue Dresden Plate Quilt with Aurifil 12wt | Shannon Fraser Designs

After machine quilting with 50wt in my trusty #2021, I also hand quilted my baby Pink Lemonade quilt with 12wt Pale Pink #2410 and Lemon #2115. I love how much texture this little quilt has. This is such a fun beginner friendly pattern.

Pink Lemonade Quilt | Shannon Fraser Designs

I’ve been hooked on using Aurifil Threads and quickly picked-up one of their colour charts to make selecting threads a breeze. I’m a big fan of colour cards, which you can read more about here.

Aurifil Thread Color Chart | Shannon Fraser Designs

Oh, and if, like me, you’re looking to support brands that are striving to be more sustainable, then I’m pleased to share that Aurifil Threads is Plastic Neutral in 2019. What does this mean? Well, in addition to encouraging buyers to recycle and reuse their plastic spools, they’ve also partnered with The Plastic Bank, a Canadian company that strives to clean up plastic waste from our oceans while also creating opportunities for people living in poverty. In a year, Aurifil Threads creates 8000kg of plastic from their production of spools, and by partnering with The Plastic Bank, they’ve committed to cleaning up 8000kg of plastic waste in our oceans, thereby making them plastic neutral for 2019. This is a great first step!

All of this to say that I am BEYOND excited to have been invited to be a 2019 Aurifil Artisan. There are some amazing makers in this year’s group  and I can’t wait to see what fun projects we all share with you.

2019 Aurifil Artisan | Shannon Fraser Designs

The quilt behind me is the Forest Talk quilt featuring my Winter Star quilt pattern and I machine quilted it with 40wt thread in #2309 Silver White - another must have colour in my thread stash!

Here’s to lots of quilty good times and fun experimenting with thread!

Hit me up with any of your questions about Aurifil in the comments below.

Happy quilting!




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  1. I am SO happy for you! I am also super excited to see what this year will bring for you! <3

    1. Thank you so much, Stacy!! Looking forward to sharing lots of fun quilty projects with you :)

  2. I also didn't think too much about thread choice when I began quilting, but my machines love Aurifil and once I started using it I couldn't look back, either. It's so much fun to explore the different weights. I look forward to seeing what you create this year as an Artisan. Congratulations!

    1. Aw, thank you, Yvonne! I’m really excited to see what projects I come up with this year 😊 And I love that we’re both part of the Aurifil family for 2019!!

  3. Do you only piece with the 50 wt? Or have you quilted with it? Also If you use the 28 wt do you use it in the bobbin as well? My local shop had the middle spools on sale today so I picked up a couple :)

    1. I have both pieced and quilted with 50wt – it works perfectly well in both scenarios! For example, both Pink Lemonade quilts were quilted with 50wt. When I quilted with the 28wt I also used it in my bobbin and didn’t have any issues! It worked like a charm! Enjoy exploring Aurifil Threads – I hope you love them as much as I do 😊

  4. Your review is spot-on. I discovered Auriful in 2004, when spools (the middle size) cost only $6.95. I’m very much wishing I had stocked-up at that price!

    1. OMG – that’s an amazing price!! The good ol’ days 😉