Wednesday, March 28, 2018


One year ago, I thought I would start saving all my emptied thread spools to see how many I go through annually.  I thought I would share what I found out.

I use two types of thread - Signature (3000 yds) and Superior King Tut (2500 yds).  They run exactly the same through my longarm (so not a lot of adjusting for tension) and my Bernina DM loves it too.  I have been using the threads for about a decade and stock about 80 different thread colors in two large spool racks I had custom made.

In one year, I emptied out 63 spools.  These were not all full when I started this experiment and I have partial spools in my rack that might be close to empty.  I was curious which colors were most popular so I sorted them.  Below are the results:

Red     3 spools
Pink     1 spool
Orange     1 spool
Yellow     1 spool
Green     7 spools
Blue     8 spools
Purple     4 spools
Gray     10 spools
White/Cream     10 spools
Black    1 spool
Brown/Tans     13 spools
Multi - Variegated     4 spools

It was surprising that I go through that many spools of brown but I do like to use taupe and spice brown a lot.

I am not sure I will continue this experiment.  I knew I spent a lot of money on thread but seeing these spools in a box reminded me all year long how much I actually go through.

Sometimes ignorance is bliss!  😉

Linking Up:


Ivani said...

Very interisting ! I wish I had a spool rack like your.

Barb Neiwert said...

That is interesting, especially the color aspect. I like those soft taupe colors, too, and find they blend with a lot of unsuspecting colors!

Vroomans' Quilts said...

Being a scrap quilter I don't inventory fabric in or out, but I do keep track of my thread. I don't go thru as much as you, but I find it easy to order ahead of the 'run out' when I keep track of it.

Rochelle aka Bella Quilts said...

I think this is enlightening. Given how many quilts you produce and then those that you quilt for customers, I'm not surprised. A remember all the donation quilts you have done! I wouldn't call it depressing. You just spend money on thread instead of lots of fabric.

Marti said...

That's a lot of thread. I don't think I want to know how much I use. I like your spool rack too. Are the spools on pegs or just sitting on the little shelf?

Jo said...

Wow... put like that you have used a lot. It's hard to guess as you don't see the gradual use.

Pamela Arbour said...

That was interesting. Thanks for doing that. Taupe is my favorite also. I get a little panicky when I only have two spools left! Time to order! It seems like it works with almost every quilt.

Jayne said...

What a great experiment! It is really interesting to see which colors you use the most. Maybe you can fine tune what you buy because of this experiment. Not to say the other colors arent good to have on hand!

Val's Quilting Studio said...

Fun post....and probably very eye awaking huh!

Louise said...

Try not to think about the cost! Think instead about how productive and accomplished you are as a quilter :) I'm impressed!

Mystic Quilter said...

Love the spool rack!! That's certainly a lot of thread you've gone through but totally necessary, just like we need a well rounded fabric selection, so it is with the thread!

Emily said...

Neat! It's especially interesting that you tracked colors. I started saving empty spools on January 1 to see how many spools I used, more as a guessing game than anything. They were all at varying lengths of full at the start of the year. Thanks for sharing your experiment!

Sandy Panagos said...

That was a fun experiment. The question is what will you do with the empty spools? My grands used to play with them, but now they're grown, and I can't bring myself to throw them out!

Kate said...

That is a lot of thread for one year!

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