When I’m doing trunk shows or lectures, I’m often asked which thread I prefer, which batting I like, which this or that I use. I do have my favorites and can be pretty opinionated or a bit of a brand name snob. I don’t mind recommending the things I use and love but I encourage everyone to try other brands for yourself.

If you’ve read my blog long, you know my favorite batting is Mountain Mist Rose (100% cotton) or Gold (50/50) and you know my favorite rulers are Creative Grids.

I have a zillion kinds/brands/types of thread but my favorite is Superior Threads. Superior has all kinds/types of thread but my favorites are:

Masterpiece – I love this one for piecing. It’s fine but strong enough for piecing. The only time I use it on the longarm is for very fine work, like micro stippling or tight McTavishing. I use the 3,000 yard cones for piecing and they last forever! Mostly I’ll use a color like 152 or 153 and I use it for everything, without changing thread color unless I’m sewing two fabrics that are really dark. The other day I was sewing together strips of a dark green fabric for borders. Since I had two dark green fabrics together, I switched to a dark green thread. Had I been sewing a light fabric to a dark green fabric, I wouldn’t have changed thread color. One day I’m going to date a cone when I put it on the machine and see how long it lasts. 3,000 yards is 3,000 yards so it doesn’t matter what brand I’m using as far as how long the thread lasts . . I understand that.

King Tut – This is probably my favorite thread of all time. It just feels good and it looks good! I’ve never had a problem with it breaking on the longarm. The colors are fantastic. Some are kinda tone on tone without being what I’d call truly variegated, although King Tut variegated colors are yummy too!

So Fine – This is a poly thread and while I’m generally not a fan of poly, this thread looks a bit like cotton and I find that I use it pretty often. Many longarmers use it all the time because we get such good tension using So Fine in the bobbin and on top.

Bottom Line – I have a love/hate relationship with Bottom Line thread. I love it because it works so perfectly in the bobbin. I can use white or cream Bottom Line in the bobbin and use black or any very dark thread on top and never have the top thread show on the bottom or have the bobbin thread show on top. Fill a bobbin with Bottom Line and I can quilt for days (almost) without running out of thread. The hate part isn’t really a “hate” per se but the dislike comes into play because it’s polyester. It looks like poly and feels like poly but it just works like a dream in the longarm. How can I not love it?

Besides Superior thread always being perfect, the Superior customer service is . . superior! 🙂 I’ve never had problem with Superior thread but I’m betting if I ever I did, it would be resolved with one phone call.

On their website, there is a link at the top for “Education“. Click there and read for days! I’ve learned more from reading the info on the Superior web page than I’ve learned anywhere else . . ever . . about thread.

Just so no one thinks I *only* use Superior, here are my thread racks. You’ll find Signature, PermaCore and even a bit of Maxi-Lock.

Rack #1 – the top is Bottom Line, towards the middle and lower area is So Fine, the very bottom is just a mixture of whatever miscellaneous cones I have.


Rack #2 – The top is King Tut, towards the bottom of the top spool holder is Signature variegated. The bottom holder has Masterpiece near the top, then some Highlights and Rainbows, then some more Signature variegateds.


Rack #3 – Top spool holder has all Signature 100% cotton threads. The top half of the bottom spool holder is more Signature 100% cottons and then some cotton/poly cones near the bottom.


This may seem like a lot of thread to those who don’t do machine quilting but it really goes fast when using it on the longarm . . especially if you’re quilting non-stop, which seems like what I’ve been doing lately.



  1. 1

    Me says

    You forgot to mention the best part of Superior Threads. His jokes! They are on the website too, so if anyone missed them- be sure to read the jokes.

  2. 2


    Holy Cow! Just out of curiosity I clicked on the link to the King Tut thread, since I had never heard of Superior Thread before. My jaw dropped at the price! I know it’s 2,000 yards and all that, but I have a new respect for longarm quilters and will never again balk at the price to have a top quilted. Beautiful thread, though. Thanks for the lesson. :o)

  3. 3


    I also prefer Superior Threads over others and I have had fabulous luck with King Tut. The colors are just gorgeous!

    I am loving your thread rack! Could you tell me the name of the manufacturer?

  4. 5


    how awesome is that to have that abundance of thread and the thread racks are fantastic! You are so organized..not like me! thanks for the info Judy!

  5. 6


    Finally, someone willing to share their favorite threads. I’ve been looking for this information for a couple of weeks and it seems everyone is so hush-hush about which thread they use. They all say, try them all out and see what you like (EXPENSIVE experiment) but they never tell you where to start. I love the Signature thread too. That is the least expensive place to start for someone who doesn’t know where to begin. Please share where you got the thread rack. I’m looking for something for the larger cones now that I’m starting to collect the big guys. And, also, where do you buy your batting and your thread? Can you share that too?
    thanks. I love reading your blog.

  6. 7


    Oh, I just figured out, that when you click on the blue words, it takes you to the website where you can buy the batting and thread. I’m slow this morning. Thanks for sharing that information =) You are the best!

  7. 8


    WOW! I have quite a lot of thread, but not as much as you do – of course, I don’t quilt for others, just me. But, I do love King Tut – I’ve ordered directly from Superior, but have also got some fanrastic deals at quilt shows also! I have also used Signature on my longarm and it works well too! I primarily use Bottom-Line in the bobbin – the prewounds – they work great! I love the racks – where did you get those?

  8. 10

    Jeanne Rumans says

    I tried that Mountain Mist Rose on a quilt and love it. I bought 2 rolls of it! Thanks for the tip!

  9. 11


    I like Superior threads too and bought some King Tut and So Fine at MQS. I kind of got in a rut since downsizing my machine when we moved to Minneapolis and was mainly using just Permacore but I also have some Signature too.

  10. 12

    Kim T says

    Just started longarm quilting and love King Tut as well – excellent quality. What do you use in the bobbin when you use this thread? I wind my own, but wish they would make prewounds in King Tut!!! Thanks for sharing.

  11. 13

    Sandy says

    Thank you very much for the info about threads. I never cease to be confused by the vast array that is available. The Superior Education page is great. They have a terrific thread selection chart which will be very helpful.

  12. 14


    Oh. My. Goodness. You look like a quilt shop with all that thread! I could totally shop with you and be happy. I needed brown thread today and the only place to buy it here is Hancock’s or WalMart. Not good. Blessings, marlene

  13. 15


    Thank you so much for sharing all this wonderful information…I have a short-arm for a couple of years …I purchased King Tut in PA at the quilt show and like trying different threads…hopefully finding that ‘perfect’ one. It is an ever learning experience…

  14. 17

    Gabriele says

    I absolutely love your thread stash and agree with you that Superior threads are the best! I’ve got to know the threads by taking one of Bob’s seminars at the Puyallup Sew & Stitchery Expo. He’s not just fun to watch, but also has a wealth of information!
    I wanted to add something to the Bottom Line – aside from seemingly lasting forever used in the bobbin (in comparison to other threads) it is great to use for hand applique. Since it is so thin, the stitches seem to vanish and it is a LOT cheaper than silk threads that many hand appliqueers use for the same reason.

  15. 18

    Marae says

    I am a long arm quilter, and just became familiar with the Superior thread. I purchased some retail at the quilt show in Long beach, but need to find a wholesale source. Do you sell wholesale? I loved your colorful display. I would love to have that! My friend Marcie in Va. Beach put me on to your blog. Thanks Marcie.

  16. 19


    Judy, would you show us a close up of your thread racks and tell us where you got them. I have a growing collection of thread and would like to contain it and still be able to look at the colors and choose instead of digging. Your blog is so informative, creative and I love looking at your quilts. Thanks for your inspiration.

  17. 20

    carol craven says

    WOW, what a crayon box type of colors of the rainbow with all the threads! How beautiful. I wish I had room to even have a fourth of that thread. You amaze me