Tutorials

   

Stitching with Glow Thread





Here at Urban Threads we're all about taking our embroidery game to the next level. Specialty threads are one fun way to bring a little something extra to your stitching... and nothing will light up your life quite like glow-in-the-dark embroidery thread! It's real, it's awesome, and it'll surprise and delight kids and adults alike.

Use glow thread on Halloween costumes and projects, evening fashions, bedroom decor... the possibilities are as endless as the night sky. Let's shine a light on how to make your glowing creations awesome!

Get close to the action -- check out the Embroidering with Glow Thread video to see how it's done!







Urban Threads has created a few designs specifically for glow-in-the-dark thread (specified in the thread list for each design), and we've stitched them using Coats Glow in the Dark 40 wt. machine embroidery thread. Here's more information on this thread. It's available in two colors: White #1 and Yellow #72.

We've found this Coats glow thread to be pretty widely available year 'round; you might find more glow threads in stores around Halloween.

 



 

In addition to the Coats glow thread, many thread brands have glow-in-the-dark thread available, including Sulky Glowy, Robison-Anton Moonglow, Madeira Luna, Fil-Tec Luminary, Simthread Glow in the Dark, and Superior Threads NiteLite. Some are available only in white; others come in a range of colors (but they'll pretty much all glow greenish).

Glow threads are treated with a special dye, so they can behave a little differently from your standard rayon or polyester machine embroidery threads. Glow threads can vary quite a bit from one brand to the next (even if the weights listed on the spool are the same).

As always, if you're working with a new type of thread, we recommend giving it a test-sew to make sure you're getting results you like, before committing your stitching to a project.




Where should you use glow thread? Urban Threads has a few embroidery designs drawn and digitized specifically with glow thread in mind. These are a great place to start!

 



 

Want to try using glow thread with other designs? Look for art elements that would light up (like stars and moon and eyes and lanterns), and imagine what the design would look like with ONLY the glowy parts showing -- it should still be readable and pretty. This dragonfly design also was created for glow thread, to look awesome in daylight AND in the dark, but it's a great example of what to look for!

If you want to use glow thread on a design that wasn't created for it, it's a good idea to test-stitch it before you commit to your project.




When you're working with any delicate thread, slowing down the embroidery speed can help prevent thread breaks.

 



 

Any burrs on the needle could also contribute to thread breaks, so use a fresh needle to make sure it's in good condition.

Needles for metallic thread have a slightly larger eye, to reduce friction. These can be a good choice for glow thread, too.

Check out the article Preventing Thread Breaks for even more tips!




Follow the thread manufacturer's care instructions to keep your glowing creations looking great. Some glow threads state specifically that you should avoid excessive heat when washing, drying, and ironing in order to preserve the thread's glowy quality.

 



 

Glow-in-the-dark thread is a wonderfully bold way to make your embroidery come alive. Once you get started, you'll want to set everything aglow!



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Suggested designs for this tutorial: 
Howl at the Moon_image
Howl at the Moon $3.99 - $5.99
4 Available Sizes:
Machine Embroidery: 6.50"w x 7.83"h | 5.87"w x 7.05"h | 4.84"w x 5.87"h | 3.19"w x 3.86"h | Hand Embroidery
Owl Always Love You_image
Owl Always Love You $3.99 - $5.99
4 Available Sizes:
Machine Embroidery: 6.85"w x 8.86"h | 5.87"w x 7.56"h | 4.88"w x 6.30"h | 2.99"w x 3.86"h | Hand Embroidery