Last year I treated myself to the entire Sublime Floss collection, a new embroidery thread from Jenny Hart’s ‘Sublime Stitching‘. Having now worked a number of projects with this brand, in particular lots of my designs for crafty Magazine last year. Like this embellished cat tote bag stitched entirely with Sublime Floss. I recently repurchased some colours and not others, and so I decided to revisit my product review.
I’m a sucker for pretty packaging and this brand definitely has the cutest, right down the colours having individual names and secret messages on the wrappers. Sublime floss is not sold individually but in ‘palettes’ of 7 pre-selected colours. Each palette is different, but the shades can be a bit samey- and tend towards strong brights. For example I found new palette ‘Laurel Canyon’ (shown top left) quite similar to the existing ‘Parlour’ (below).
The only palette with neutral shades is ‘portrait’ designed for stitching faces. The floss palette names cleverly reflect the themes and names in the Sublime Stitching pattern range. The colours are both this brand’s strength and a weakness, however. These sets are perfect for beginners unsure of where to start, but as seasoned stitcher I found the palettes limiting, lacking enough colour variations for more subtle work.
How the floss handles: In comparison to DMC or Madeira, Sublime Floss is stiffer and tends to stick to itself when unwinding, tangling easily. It took me a long time to get the hang of stitching with this floss, and thread conditioner Thread Heaven was a revelation – it definitely helped. This Sublime Floss is also finer so if you like fat stitches you’ll need more strands. That said, this thread is well suited to fine detail work.
My least favourite palettes were the ‘Mingles’ and the variegated ‘Taffy Pull’ threads. I was excited by the novelty factor but found the mingles difficult to find uses for (except the mixed green). And the Taffy Pull flosses were problematic in that their colour variation ranged from very dark to very light- so that they neither worked well against a dark background or a light background as the shade change lost contrast. The colour change also happens so gradually that if stitching a smaller pattern there is no graduation visible. I’ve cut out parts of the floss and start over to keep the colour change showing.
My Favourite palette turned out to be this one: Fruit Salad– which I used on lots of projects like the embroidered shirt for Crafty Mag 6, (detail shown below) and the Cat tote shisha stitching in Crafty 9 you see at the start of this blog post. It’s also the palette featured on my free Carl Sagan Apple Pie pattern.
A definite bonus of this brand is that I’ve found Sublime Floss a pleasure to work on clothing , particularly hard cottons like canvas and denim. They wash well (even in the washing machine) and stay colour true.
While this brand has limitations, I would definitely recommend giving it a try. Especially if you like brights or if you’d like to get out of your colour comfort zone and use something a bit different. Have you tried Sublime Stitching Floss? Did you like it? Do you have a favourite embroidery thread brand, or one you really hate? Tell me about them in the comments below.