FREE SHIPPING  Enjoy free shipping on orders of $50 or more (to U.S. addresses)

quality of cotton imageFinding a high-quality Cotton thread

Q. How can I distinguish quality of cotton threads? I have been using a brand of cotton that was given to me as a gift and it seems to be very hairy and leaves a lot of lint when I sew.

A. There are three grades of cotton and the majority of cotton thread is made from the lowest and medium grades.

  • Low: Regular staple (or short staple) cotton. Thread made from this grade is never marked as regular or short staple. It is labeled only as 100% cotton or mercerized cotton. 
  • Medium: Long staple cotton. Will be labeled as such.
  • High: Extra-long staple cotton. Will be labeled as such. (This is the highest quality cotton currently available and will most definitely be labeled and branded as an extra-long staple cotton.)

Why does the staple length matter? A staple (an individual strand of cotton fiber) is the source of strength for cotton. The longer the staple, the fewer starts and stops the thread has, resulting in better stress management. Another benefit of an extra-long staple is the less lint that will be displaced when sewing.

Back to all Education

By: Bob Purcell