14 responses

  1. Alison Cummins
    January 18, 2008

    Um… wow.

    Thanks. This was clearly a huge amount of work.

    Reply

  2. Vesta
    January 18, 2008

    Excellent and, for us, timely information. I admit that my head was spinning a little toward the middle, though . . .

    Reply

  3. Lisa Bloodgood in Portland
    January 18, 2008

    Wow! I knew there was more than one system, but gee whiz! I can see that mass confusion could possibly and easily abound. Thanks, Stuart!

    Reply

  4. nadine
    January 19, 2008

    FANTASTIC!!!!!

    I’m a thread freak because I use a lot of topstitching in my products am always having to find the thickest thread, that is strong enough, that will work on the largest needle my particular machine will take. I’ve learned a lot about thread but recently received some wonderful nylon thread from a corporate donation to my class that had a totally different sizing system. So this post is unbelievably helpful and saved me a trip to the local thread supplier who promised to help me figure out what I had. GREAT!

    Reply

  5. Jennifer E.
    January 19, 2008

    Great Post Stuart !!! – always hated doing these conversion in class. Checked the gsm to oz/yd^2 convert (for my own perverse pleasure) and there good IMHO except 2oz/yd^2 is 67 gsm

    This is also a brief introduction on understanding fabric specifications/descriptions. As yarns are often described by cotton count for fabric like shirtings.
    Add in the yarn count per inch and you get this whole slew of numbers that can look like
    50/2 x 40/2 110 x130
    it can be very confusing it a newbie until you understand what each sequence means

    Reply

  6. LisaB
    January 21, 2008

    Thanks for writing all this out for us plus providing additional links. I really appreciate the information and your taking the time to pull it together for us.

    Reply

  7. sfriedberg
    January 22, 2008

    I’m relieved that someone found this useful. Like fruitcake, it’s dense with a lot of stuff in it, but not everyone cares for that!

    I’ve sent Kathleen part 2 on needles, which actually made my head ache while researching. It will have a bit more info about needle-to-thread sizing that nadine would probably find useful.

    Reply

  8. esther
    January 22, 2008

    Thank you for the great article. Can’t wait for part 2!

    Reply

  9. Natasha Estrada
    January 23, 2008

    While not technically a sewing thread count there is also the Bradford Count (named after the mills there which incidently is where my grandfather worked) which is is based on how many 560 yard skeins could be spun from one pound of fleece. For example 64s

    Reply

  10. Fashion-Incubator
    January 24, 2008

    Finding the right needle size in the Haystack pt.2

    Here is part three of Stuart Friedberg’s entries on thread and needle sizes pt.1). Again, thanks so much Stuart! ————— Common Needle Systems The needle system defines the other two critical dimensions (the diameter of the shank and the distan…

    Reply

  11. lou
    March 18, 2008

    WOW! I was looking to convert cotton crochet thread to a 4 ply and stumbled upon your site. Realized there is SO MUCH to know, but I don’t need such a grand scale. Does anyone have a quick/easy conversion on cotton thread to 4 or 2 ply yards (other than play w/ gauge?) Thanks to you pros! Lou

    Reply

  12. Bill
    February 2, 2009

    Thanks for writing this. It was very informative and answered questions I had about thread sizes.

    Reply

  13. Rich
    April 13, 2015

    Stuart, thanks for the reference material. To return the favor, here is an access point for military specs: http://quicksearch.dla.mil/ just type a word to search like “thread”, or “webbing” into the “find term” field.

    Reply

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