Bespoke Cutter And Tailor

Apprentices => The Apprentice's Forum => Topic started by: hutch-- on April 18, 2016, 02:28:54 PM

Title: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: hutch-- on April 18, 2016, 02:28:54 PM
I guess you would have to get a reasonable description of what basting thread was when Cabrera wrote the book and whether it is any different in its characteristics from modern poly/cotton. It can often be the situation that something was available at the location and time that the book was written that has no advantage over something that is available at a different location and/or time. You can routinely get poly cotton in either #75 or #120 size so there would have to be some obscure advantage in using what was defined as a basting thread at the time of the book's authorship.
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: TTailor on April 18, 2016, 08:43:14 PM
I wouldn't use basting thread for any permanent stitching.
When I started tailoring, we typically used silk or nylon thread which came in skeins for padstitching

Still my preference, but others use a good quality sewing thread in a matching or close colour.
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: Henry Hall on April 18, 2016, 09:06:51 PM
That part of the canvas is not under stress because it is 'floating' and unseen anyway, so presumably Cabrera (and other people who use basting thread there) are of the opinion that it is suitable. In Thomas Nordeim's book he uses silk thread for the chest canvas and in Liberty it is cotton thread.

Silk thread or similar for the revers and collar though.
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: Greger on April 19, 2016, 12:32:40 AM
At one time good thread was expensive. Basting thread is made of short cotton fibers. The short fibers makes it a weak thread. With enough pad stitches in the chest you don't need better thread. If you don't put in enough stitches, then that is a different matter. If a few of them break, making the coat more comfortable, then that is better. To many breaking and the insides come apart. Overkill is not necessary. Basting thread is plenty good.
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: lepus on April 19, 2016, 07:11:55 AM
Some of the instructions for pad-stitching the chest canvas of coats state that basting thread should be used. For example, Cabrera advocates basting thread for this task, and I'm sure I've read this advice elsewhere - perhaps Hostek? (Don't have my books with me right now so can't check).

That is strange. My edition of Cabrera/Flaherty Meyers doesn't say that basting thread SHOULD be used, but that it CAN be used. As it is not subject to big forces, is not visible on the outside and feels soft on the flannel covering, I interpret its use as efficient and time-saving, following the basting together of the canvas parts; it's just not necessary to change thread and needle.
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: TTailor on April 20, 2016, 08:27:40 AM
Ahh, I was thinking about padstitching lapels, and using silk or nylon thread there.
As for constructing the chest canvas, you could use basting thread I guess, if that is your preference.
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: hutch-- on April 20, 2016, 12:12:33 PM
If I have it right you can use anything that does the job if its not a specialised application like gimp for button holes or color matched fine thread for external visual appearance. Poly-cotton is cheap, easy to get and reliable where dedicated basting thread is probably now heirloom material.
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: Henry Hall on April 20, 2016, 06:23:03 PM
Poly-cotton is cheap, easy to get and reliable where dedicated basting thread is probably now heirloom material.

Cotton basting thread is easy to find. It is, as Greger noted, made from short cotton fibres (with a starching agent added).Even though it breaks under direct pressure, it's stable enough.
I have wondered about its degradation over time, but I have trousers which were made in the 40s and 50s, where the edges have been hand-serged with basting cotton, and it's all intact. Whether it would survive hand-washing, with the starching breaking down, I don't know, but I'm going to find out.

There's an old trick tailors used to use for getting fresh blood spots out of garments, caused by pricking your finger. They would chew on basting thread and lay it on the blood-spot. It actually works and the thread doesn't collapse either. I think it's pretty resilient stuff really, apart from breaking under tensile stress.
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: posaune on April 20, 2016, 07:10:17 PM
I would not use basting cotton for padstitching - to thick. I remember there was a special padstichting thread  - nowadays I use silk or a very fine machine thread (120).
lg
posaune
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: Henry Hall on April 20, 2016, 07:24:48 PM
It doesn't have to be fine for chest pad-stitching. The stitches are fairly large and moderately loose.
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: Greger on April 21, 2016, 12:11:21 AM
Collars and lapels the stitches could be in view. You would never use basting thread there for pad stitches.
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: Tailleuse on June 02, 2016, 02:03:24 PM
I don't recall Cabrera suggesting using basting thread for pad stitching in the first edition.  Basting thread is used on some parts of the canvas and for attaching the canvas to the cloth, but it is not used in the lapels or collar.
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: Tailleuse on June 02, 2016, 02:06:13 PM
Collars and lapels the stitches could be in view. You would never use basting thread there for pad stitches.

The  Thomas von Nordheim section on pad stitching relates an anecdote in which a woman taking a master tailoring exam had to pad stitch the lapels of a black jacket with white silk thread, but that was only because it was a test to show that she had the skill to keep the thread from showing. You normally use a permanent thread in the color of the wool.
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: pfaff260 on June 02, 2016, 02:42:19 PM
Love that book by Thomas von Nordheim.
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: Henry Hall on June 02, 2016, 08:37:13 PM
I don't recall Cabrera suggesting using basting thread for pad stitching in the first edition.  Basting thread is used on some parts of the canvas and for attaching the canvas to the cloth, but it is not used in the lapels or collar.

It is in Cabrera's book, on page 93. He says that the chest piece can be done in basting thread because it is unseen.
Title: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: Claire Shaeffer on August 31, 2016, 01:48:06 AM
I prefer cotton thread in a color that matches the undercollar. I use Mettler threads--either 50 or 60.

There are two types of basting threads: unfinished which generally comes on skeins but also in spools in Europe and thread with a starched finished which is on spools. The latter, but not the former, would be ok.

A disadvantage of cotton thread is when it dries out, it will break. Old threads can often be resusitate by soaking them in water. Most garments are not worn that many years for this to be a problem unless you live in a hot, dry climate.

If you are a good pad-stitcher, you can use any color cotton thread. This is a good time to empty your bobbins of colors you won't use again. This is a bigger problem for womens' jackets than mens.
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: Henry Hall on August 31, 2016, 07:10:44 AM
For a collar? I think it's pretty much unanimous that silk is best used for the collar and (generally) revers.
Title: Re: Re: Why use basting thread for pad-stitching?
Post by: Tailleuse on April 22, 2017, 04:22:54 AM
I prefer cotton thread in a color that matches the undercollar. I use Mettler threads--either 50 or 60.

There are two types of basting threads: unfinished which generally comes on skeins but also in spools in Europe and thread with a starched finished which is on spools. The latter, but not the former, would be ok.

A disadvantage of cotton thread is when it dries out, it will break. Old threads can often be resusitate by soaking them in water. Most garments are not worn that many years for this to be a problem unless you live in a hot, dry climate.

If you are a good pad-stitcher, you can use any color cotton thread. This is a good time to empty your bobbins of colors you won't use again. This is a bigger problem for womens' jackets than mens.

I use cotton thread in the color of the wool, but would use my soft, Torre brand Italian basting thread before I'd used the coated basting thread I bought from WAWAK.

In Thomas von Nordheim's book, Vintage Couture Tailoring, he discusses a woman who took an exam for her tailoring degree in the 1930s. She had to pad a black satin lapel with white thread so finely it wouldn't show on the other side. He recommends that as an exercise, not a recommendation to use contrasting thread for pad stitching on real garments.