Tuesday, December 18, 2012

What threads do you use for beading?

Every beader you talk to seems to have a different preference for threads to use for beading.

As a beadweaver I was taught using fireline, and the discussion on whether to use nymo or fireline began. I recently took part in a Beading Babes challenge project which included the Soutache project in Bead & Button by Amee Sweet-McNamara. This project introduced me to nymo B. I found this thread really nice to work with but it can fray easily. My next Beading Babes project was a bead embroidered cuff. For this piece I explored threads using the nymo B, some One G, K.O., and Silamide. There's a range of prices amongst these threads but what I found was:
  • they are all nice to work with 
  • they all fray
  • silamide and nymo b are hardest to thread, the end splits open
  • KO is easiest to thread the end doesn't split at all
  • they all have a range of colours to suit threads and fabrics. 
I have since also used nymo D
Lately I've been using the KO a lot. I have found the end doesn't part when you're trying to thread it, it takes alot of unpicking before fraying, it doesn't fray bad where needle eye sits, it feels nice in hand

So my preference -
  • I still like fireline for Beadweaving, although it tangles, I feel it holds the shape better.
  • For Soutache I love KO
  • For Bead Embroidery any of the nylon threads.  I now have a selection of threads I need to use up. But will probable stay with KO for new purchases even though it's heaps more expensive than nymo
So what thread is your preference?


  1. Thanks for this. I just bought my first roll of size 4 fireline in smoke, I don't know why I refused to use it before. Probably the stories about the colour coming off and my bad experience with the crystal. I don't know that I'd go back now. I have a lot of Nymo B but like you feel it is too hard to thread. I might check out the KO as I am partial to using the right colour in a piece.

  2. Corrie if you find the smoke comes off in your hand thread the needle then just run the thread through a tissue to remove the excess colour.

  3. nymo in large spools are bonded less fraying