Mid-November 2011 Newsletter

sew superior . . . . . . .  it's guaranteed!

Superior Threads Mid-November 2011

If you are using a top quality thread and the thread is fraying, shredding, breaking, or creating a lot of lint, either the needle is too small or the tension is too tight.  It usually is just that simple.

EDUCATION: Automatic Tension Settings on Home Machines
I have done something that I would bet you have never done before.  I read the owner's manual of a sewing machine, cover to cover.  Every page, every word.  Although it was about seven years ago, I remember it still today because of what I learned.  The manual was for a new top-of-the-line machine which Heather (Mother Superior) just bought.  This was back in the old days when they were only $6,000.  It must of been a slow day because I do not read owner's manuals for anything.  I remember reading the chapter on top thread tension because this machine had an automatic tension feature.  It was page 51. "This machine is factory preset to sew using a 50 or 60 wt. polyester thread." I read that again and thought, "Heather usually doesn't sew with a 50 or 60 wt. polyester thread on top. She pieces with cotton.  She quilts usually with a 40 wt. poly or cotton thread. She embroiderers with a 40 wt. thread. So why is this fancy machine, advertised for quilting and embroidery, factory preset to sew with a thread that is rarely used for piecing, quilting, or embroidery?" That's when the light bulb went on and enlightened my thinking.  Sewing machines are built around the world for the world.  Regardless of advertised quilting or embroidery features, they are first and foremost sewing machines.  The world sews. We quilt. We embroider.  Machines are made for the world.

Factory preset tension settings for sewing are different from those required for quilting and embroidering, so a just-out-of-the-box new machine is not set for quilting or embroidery functions.  Most machines have a tension scale ranging from zero (no tension) to 10 (very tight tension).  The average factory preset tension setting is at 5.0 and remember, that is for a 50 or 60 wt. polyester sewing thread. If you use a cotton, metallic, silk, monofilament, delicate, sensitive, or heavier threads, a tension setting of 5.0 is too tight in most instances.  We have about 25 different types of threads including fine, medium, and heavy threads in various fibers.  The most common tension settings recommended for the majority of our threads range between 2.0 and 4.0 (for a chart showing recommended tension for all our threads, click here). And most machines are preset at 5.0.  That is too tight for most piecing, applique, quilting and embroidery applications.

So what does automatic tension mean? Can a machine sense every different type of thread, fabric, batting, backing?  Of course not.  Automatic tension means that the machine adjusts (usually lowers) the top tension setting when some specific stitches are selected or when the embroidery function is engaged.  It does not make adjustments for sensitive threads, fine threads, or decorative threads. If you use a range of different threads, it is important to learn how to manually adjust the top tension and not rely on the automatic function. I guarantee this will solve many sewing-related problems and open the door to new possibilities.  You will be jumping for joy as you successfully use threads you have not been able to use in the past.


In December, we will list all the $30 winning ideas for 2011 and ask you to vote for the best one.
1st Place Prize: $250 Gift Certificate
2nd Place Prize: $150 Gift Certificate
Between now and Nov. 30, you have a chance to submit your ideas to qualify for a $30 winning idea to be announced in the next regular newsletter.  December's winners will join with all other 2011 winners and Newsletter readers can then vote for the Best of the Best.
If you have ideas, suggestions, or brilliant marketing recommendations relating to products, education, website, customer service, etc. which will help us serve you better, please e-mail us.  We will award a $30 gift certificate for the best ideas and you may qualify for the Best of the Best prize. 
This month's winning Consultants:
1. Tami Robbins.  I know you sell your Threadology DVD, but it doesn't include the thread, etc., that you talk about in Threadology. How about making a kit of the thread, needles, etc., that would be available to go along with your DVD?. It would also be a great kit for those who are just learning about your great products and want to just try them out. Mahalo for providing such great products!
Bob’s Note: Why didn’t I think of that? I could have saved $30.  Great idea Tami.  We did it.  This will make a fantastic gift for a friend who is just starting and is also ideal for the person who is just discovering our products. We made the set and called it the Thread Therapy DVD and Thread Set.  It includes Dr. Bob's Thread Therapy DVD (newly revised Oct. 2011), an assortment set of Superior Topstitch Needles, and spools of the following threads: Metallic, King Tut, MasterPiece, So Fine #50, Rainbows, Bottom Line, Kimono Silk #100. Total value is $82.34. Special price is $49.95. See What's New section below.

2. Katrina Branting.  Thanks for the information on the "Deal of the Day."  Would it be possible to include the normal price in addition to the "Deal" price?  I'd like to know how good a deal I'm getting!
Bob’s Note: Done.  Regular prices are now listed.

3. Sharon del Rio.  I use Hugo's Amazing Tape to keep my pantographs rolled neatly so they stay nice and flat and do not get crunched.  It keeps the corners from curling outwards and they are just like new when I use them the next time.

4. Tanya Bunch.  I have a suggestion for the longarmers who use pantographs.  Rather than put rubber bands or paper clips around your pantos, I use Hugo’s tape. Now they lie flatter and I can see through it also. I love this tape.

5. Nancy Foisy.  When using MonoPoly clear monofilament thread, I keep a black permanent marker close by to darken the end of the thread, making it highly visible when threading the needle. Some machines lack the white paint on the shank and/or an automatic threader, so keeping a small white piece of paper nearby to place behind the needle makes it easy to see the eye of the needle.
Bob's Note: After many months of inventory issues, MonoPoly is back in stock. It is finer and stronger than before. Our Smoke color is not as dark as it used to be.  Good news all the way around.
6. Susie Frees.  I wrap a thick rubber band around the thread cone pin on my longarm machine. This keeps the cone from bouncing off the holder as the thread is used up and the cone gets lighter in weight.
Bob’s Note: Wrapping some batting around the pin also works to stabilize the cone.
7. Christine Parker.  Shortly after purchasing my cutting table, I pushed it to one side in my sewing room and broke the table leg.  Not wanting to tell my husband what I had done, I used Hugo's Amazing Tape and actually fixed the table leg.  This was several years ago and it is still holding strong---no wobbling.   Have also used this tape to hold my supply cases shut when traveling to and from classes.
Bob’s Note: Hope your husband doesn’t read this.

WHAT’S NEW (This Week)
1. Thread Therapy DVD and Thread Set.  Includes Dr. Bob's Thread Therapy DVD (1 hr. 45 min. seminar updated Oct. 2011), an assortment set of Superior Topstitch Needles, and the following threads:
Metallic (500 yds.)
King Tut (500 yds.)
MasterPiece (600 yds.)
So Fine #50 (550 yds.)
Rainbows (500 yds.)
Bottom Line (1,420 yds.)
Kimono Silk #100 (209 yds.).
Total value is $82.34. Special price is $49.95

2.  Gift Certificates are now available in any amount.  Simply fill in the desired dollar amount, add a love note or gift message, and choose delivery by e-mail or regular mail.

WHAT’S NEW (This Month)
1. Revised and updated Thread Therapy with Dr. Bob DVD.  The former edition was 55 minutes in length.  This revised edition is more detailed and lasts 1 hr. 45 minutes.  Bob teaches quality characteristics of  cotton, poly, rayon, metallic, silk, and nylon threads, discusses needles, tension settings, spools vs. cones, and more.  Guaranteed to solve sewing-related problems and reduce frustrations.  Permission is granted to show the DVD at public gatherings such as guild meetings and sewing groups.  Introductory Special: $19.95 (reg. $24.95).

Deal of the Day
Everyone is bombarded with daily coupon offers so we are not going to do that.  But if you are on our website and shopping anyway, please check out the Deal of the Day. You might find just what you were looking for.
To view the Deal of the Day link, click on the Products button and then click on Deal of the Day in the drop down menu.
Each day brings a new deal.

3. SuperBOBs prewound bobbins are now available in color #639, BRIGHT ORANGE.
L-style and M style bobbins are in stock.
Available by the dozen, 1/2 gross (72), and gross (144).

4. A reminder that MonoPoly is back in stock.
Our newly IMPROVED MonoPoly is even finer than our previous MonoPoly but stronger.
Available in reduced-sheen Clear and Smoke.
2,200 yds. $7.99.

5. Hair Tinsel.  From Hollywood to the local small town beauty salon, Hair Tinsel is adding bling and flair to hair.  Superior Threads is the leading Hair Tinsel products provider with Glitter, Razzle Dazzle, Halo, NiteLite glow-in-the-dark thread, and SunBurst sunlight-activated color-changing thread. Photos, videos, and detailed instructions are on the Hair Tinsel pages.

WHAT’S NEW (Last Month)
1. Bobbin Compatibility List.  We have compiled a comprehensive list showing what type bobbin is used by most machines.

2. Hugo's Amazing Tape. Hugo's Amazing Tape is a no-glue self-clinging tape that can be reused over and over.  No sticky residue. Strong and durable.  Excellent for wrapping around cones/spools of thread to keep the ends from unraveling.  Ideal to keep quilt strips and fabric rolls organized.
Wrap around boxes to keep them closed, books to keep pages open, wrapping paper and ribbon to prevent unwinding, and to secure objects. Works wet or dry.
On sale this month.  See Specials below.

3. Gift option on website.  During checkout, there is now a Gift option which allows you to send the order to another person as a gift.  Above the Enter payment Information there is a This order is a gift box. When selected, a message box will appear.  Simply type the message you want and continue to check out.  You also have the option to request that we not include the receipt with the gift order.

The Perfect Gift to Give or to Receive TWO new Clubs Available.  We just added two new wholesale clubs: LAVA and #100 Kimono Silk 1,090 yd. mini cones.
So Fine #40 Club coming soon for both retail and wholesale Clubs as soon as we catch up on inventory.
Each month, more and more are discovering and enjoying the benefits of the Thread of the Month Club.  We tried to design our Thread of the Month Clubs in such a way that it screams, "Why wouldn't I want to be part of this?  The benefits are amazing."
- FREE SHIPPING (USA addresses) or discounted shipping (international) on your monthly Club order including all Superior products items you add to the Club shipment.
- No enrollment fees, management fees, or any type of fees.
- No time commitment. Start, add, cancel, or switch Clubs any time.
- Wide variety of threads to choose from such as King Tut, MasterPiece, So Fine, Bottom Line, OMNI, Embroidery, Silk, and a new Superior Sampler Club.
- Members-only amazing monthly discounts.  There are some great specials.
- Retail and Wholesale Clubs available. (Wholesale accounts must log in to view Clubs.)
Price Guarantee. Club members are guaranteed that the price for Club threads will not increase for the monthly Club shipments.  This guarantee is valid for all Club members.  For example, the price of King Tut and MasterPiece spools recently increased.  However, the Club price stayed at the original level.  This means that even if you join a club now, your prices are at the original Club level, not the current higher price.
School of Threadology
What is the School of Threadology?

1. January 16-17, 2012. Ontario, Calif.  Certified Superior Threadologist course.  Registration will be through Road to California quilt show office.  Limited capacity.

2. February 2-4 and 6-8, 2012. St. George, Utah. The Silk Experience.  Session 1 (Feb. 2-4) is for quilters. Session 2 (Feb. 6-8) is for sewers.  Conducted by Maggie Backman, one of the most knowledgeable silk specialists in the world.  Maggie designed these unique round robin classes using three talented and experienced teachers for each session.  The classes will be utilizing silk as the fiber of choice because silk invites many techniques such as easy coloring, surface design and quilting processes. Each class will utilize and experience the silk threads that Superior has recently introduced to their thread line. The six classroom teachers are well known national/international teachers, having worked together in previous years at the Houston Festival. The new class setting in St. George, Utah offers a new retreat format that allows a quiet, wonderful atmosphere for fun, fiber and function. The sessions are reasonably priced and detailed information about the teachers, class descriptions, location, and opportunities are available at or contact Maggie via e-mail. Maximum: 30 students per session.

3. March 20-23, 2012.  St. George, Utah. MY DESIGN by Cindy Needham.  Cindy has created this workshop for the confident beginner up to the experienced free motion quilter.  She will provide you with a good foundation on thread choices, how to make good quilting design choices, how to create and design fabulous feathers and her new French paisley designs, and how to create beautiful background designs with minimal marking.  Everyone will go home with a beautiful wholecloth sampler quilt that is created during the week. Cost of $400 includes 4 full days of Cindy's workshops, 4 lunches and 3 dinners.  Price does not include airfare or hotel accommodations.  Please do not make non-refundable airline and hotel reservations until we meet our student minimum of 18. (3 spaces left)

Superior Specials

Hugo's Amazing Tape. Hugo's Amazing Tape is a no-glue self-clinging tape that can be reused over and over.  No sticky residue. Strong and durable.  Excellent for wrapping around cones/spools of thread to keep the ends from unraveling.  Ideal to keep quilt strips and fabric rolls organized.
Wrap around boxes to keep them closed, books to keep pages open, wrapping paper and ribbon to prevent unwinding, and to secure objects. Works wet or dry.
Introductory price: 50 ft. roll x 1" wide. $8.95 (reg. $14.95).

1. Thread Therapy DVD and Thread Set.  Includes Dr. Bob's Thread Therapy DVD (1 hr. 45 min. seminar updated Oct. 2011), an assortment set of Superior Topstitch Needles, and the following threads:
Metallic (500 yds.)
King Tut (500 yds.)
MasterPiece (600 yds.)
So Fine #50 (550 yds.)
Rainbows (500 yds.)
Bottom Line (1,420 yds.)
Kimono Silk #100 (209 yds.).
Total value is $82.34. Special price is $49.95

35% off Art Studio Colors 2,000 yd. cones. Art Studio Colors by Ricky Tims is a premium high-sheen trilobal polyester.  It is one of our favorite threads for machine quilting (both home machine and longarm), embroidery, and applique.
For home machines, please refer to the Home Machine Reference Guide for recommended needle and tension settings.
For longarm machines, please refer to the Longarm Tension Guide chart.
Please also watch our educational video demonstrating premium trilobal polyester. Art Studio Colors and Highlights are the exact same thread type, just different color collections.

Only $9 during November (reg. price is $13.90).

Sampler Sets  If you are not familiar with many of our products, we offer a variety of Sampler Sets at good discounts.  We have a set for home quilters, another for longarm quilters, another for embroiderers, and another for bobbin work/serger/couching.
Each set contains many threads for the indicated application.  For example, the Home Machine Quilting Sampler kit contains the following: Color catalog, Superior Metallics (500 yds.),  Glitter (400 yds.), Rainbows (500 yds.), NiteLite ExtraGlow (80 yds.), The Bottom Line (1,420 yds.), Nature Colors (500 yds.), So Fine (550 yds.), King Tut (500 yds.), MasterPiece (600 yds.), Superior Topstitch Assortment needles (pack of 5 needles), SuperBOBs L-Style (1 bobbin), So Fine #30 (NEW Brytes) (275 yds.), Kimono Silk (220 yds.).  A $90 value for only $54.  Similar discounts are offered on all Sampler Sets.

Perfect Quilter
. All remaining stock at 50% off.  Perfect Quilter is a #30/3-ply cotton and is being discontinued.  Available on both 300 yd. mini cones and 2,500 yd. cones.  Perfect Quilter is a heavier cotton thread and intended to be visible on your quilts.  Works well on home machines with a Topstitch #100/16 needle.  Some longarm machines (tight-tensioned machines) do not run it well.  Loosely-tensioned longarm machines are fine with a #20 or #21 needle.
300 yd. mini cones
  $4.50 (reg. $8.99). 27 colors remaining.
2,500 yd. cones
  $15 (reg. $29.99). 8 colors remaining.

Frank feared his wife Gloria wasn't hearing as well as she used to and he thought she might need a hearing aid. Not quite sure how to approach her, he called the family doctor to discuss the problem. The doctor told him there is a simple informal test the husband could perform to give him a better idea about her hearing loss.
“Here's what you do,” said the doctor. “Stand about 40 feet away from her and in a normal conversational speaking tone see if she hears you. If not, go to 30 feet, then 20 feet, and so on until you get a response.”
That evening, Gloria was in the kitchen cooking dinner and Frank was in the den. He said to himself, “I'm about 40 feet away, let's see what happens.” Then in a normal tone he asked, “Honey, what's for dinner?”
No response.
So Frank moves closer to the kitchen, about 30 feet from his wife and repeats, “Gloria, what's for dinner?”
Still no response.
Next he moves into the dining room where he is about 20 feet from his wife and asks, “'Honey, what's for dinner?
Again he gets no response.
So, he walks up to the kitchen door, about 10 feet away. “Honey, what's for dinner?”
Again there is no response.
So he walks right up behind her and says, “Gloria, what's for dinner?”
“For heaven’s sake, Frank! For the FIFTH time, CHICKEN!”

Shipping$3.95 SHIPPING ON ALL RETAIL ORDERS CONTINUES within the U.S. 50 states.  You choose the products, we’ll choose the shipping method.  (Wholesale and business account orders have different shipping rates.)  You still have the option of choosing faster shipping methods.

International orders: We now offer low Air Mail rates on international shipping to most countries.  Air Mail rates are available for packages up to 4 lbs.  International packages over 4 lbs. sent via the Post Office require Priority Mail or Express Mail rates.  UPS is also available.    

for reading. Please forward to a friend and have a SUPERIOR day. To change your subscribed e-mail address or if this was forwarded to you and you want your very own copy personally sent to your e-mail Inbox, please click here: Subscribe  To unsubscribe, click the link at the bottom of the e-mail.

Bob Purcell, the Thread Professor and self-certified Threadologist.

Superior Threads: The ONLY thread with a guarantee.
sew superior . . . . . . . it's guaranteed!
Superior no ka oi

Copyright © 2011 Superior Threads. All Rights Reserved.  If you wish to reprint the Education portion of this newsletter, authorization is hereby granted as long as the source is clearly cited as follows: used with permission from Bob Purcell.