Mary Corbet

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I learned to embroider when I was a kid, when everyone was really into cross stitch (remember the '80s?). Eventually, I migrated to surface embroidery, teaching myself with whatever I could get my hands on...read more

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Thread Talk: Madeira Cotton Embroidery Floss


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This morning, a little thread talk! I mentioned on Wednesday, when we talked about some specialty lighting instead, that I wanted to have a little chat about embroidery threads. So here we are, chatting!

I’ve been trying out Madeira cotton embroidery floss. It’s a six-stranded cotton, like most cotton floss that we’re used to, but there are a few significant differences that make Madeira cotton unique.

Madeira cotton embroidery floss

First, let’s cover the basics. Madeira floss is:

  • Six-Stranded Cotton Floss
  • Made from Long-staple Egyptian Cotton
  • Mercerized (it has a sheen)
  • Washable and Colorfast to 95C
  • 10 Meters per “Skein”
  • Made in Germany

Madeira cotton embroidery floss

The first thing that will strike any stitcher about Madeira cotton embroidery floss is the way it’s packaged.

They say that packaging is everything, and while I don’t always buy that point of view, in this case, I Really Like the packaging on Madeira floss for a number of reasons.

Madeira cotton embroidery floss

The floss comes in thin packages (I think they call them Stick Twists, or just sticks) with a clear window in front, so that you can see the color.

The thread is situated inside the package in such a way that, when pulled from the bottom of the stick, it comes straight out without any kind of entanglement.

Madeira cotton embroidery floss

At the top of each package, there’s a hole for hanging, making it very easy to slip lots of the thin packs of floss onto a jump ring.

In the photo above, I’ve separated colors for a project onto two jump rings, and then joined the jump rings with another ring to hold all my thread colors together for the one project. I can hang the main ring from my frame or a hook at my work area, and access all my threads very easily.

I also use the hanging hole on each package to loop the leftover cut thread from that particular package, so I don’t waste thread.

Madeira cotton embroidery floss

On the back of each thread package, there are instructions for snipping a little triangle at the base of the packaging and pulling out the thread.

After doing this to a couple of the packages, I found that I was wasting about an inch of thread when I made that snip.

So instead, I found the spot where the thread is already lodged in the edge of the packaging and coaxed the cut end of the thread out through that spot.

Either way you do it, it works.

I’m sure you can recognize right away the genius of this packaging. Here are the benefits that I see:

  • There’s no pull skein to mess with.
  • You don’t have to seek some other solution to packaging and organizing open skeins.
  • The packages have a very slim profile, so you can fit many on one jump ring.
  • The top hole on each package provides a place to keep leftover cut threads.

But Packaging Isn’t Everything!

I know! I know! What good is packaging, if the thread is inferior?

Well, it’s not! It’s a nice thread to work with – a very good quality thread, in fact. It easily equates with the better quality stranded cottons that we’re used to working with.

And it comes in a lot of colors! There are some 379 colors, I believe.

Fortunately, there are many DMC to Madeira conversion charts online, if you have a projected designed with DMC that you’d rather work with Madeira (or visa-versa). Several popped up right away with a simple Google search of “DMC to Madeira conversion chart.”

Madeira cotton embroidery floss

I’ve been embroidering this tree with Madeira stranded cotton.

There are a few adjustments I need to make in some of the leaves shown above (you know how it is – stitch a little, pick a little… pick pick pick, stitch a lot, pick a little more).

It’s been a marvelous experience so far! The floss is lovely to stitch with, and keeping the threads neat and organized is a breeze.

I also like the colors. They have an abundance of good greens to choose from. They don’t have a lot of variegated colors, but there are a few, a couple of which are working well with this project.

Where to Find It

Well, it seems that, overseas – especially in the UK and Australia – Madeira stranded cotton is pretty widely available. A quick Google search brings up many shops and online purchasing options in those countries.

In the US, Madeira stranded cotton is not so widely available. It’s now being distributed by & More Threads out of Dallas, Texas.

It’s not really gotten out to needlework shops far and wide, and I’m not sure of any shops with an online presence in the US that carry the whole line. There are some shops here and there – some machine sewing shops – that have small collections of colors, but I haven’t seen the whole collection in any one shop. If you happen to know of anyone carrying it, feel free to mention it below in the comments.

It would be nice to see Madeira more widely available in the US. I like the idea of having choices when it comes to stranded cotton. And I think stitchers in the US will appreciate both the quality of the thread and the unique packaging, which eliminates a lot of frustration.

And, of course, there’s also the fact that there are two meters more in each package, compared to standard stranded cotton skeins.

Yes, you do pay for that difference (and for the packaging) – in the US, a Madeira stick runs about $1.10-$1.20, depending on where and how you buy it.

So, that’s Madeira stranded cotton! Have you used it? Any thoughts you want to share? Any questions you might have? Insights? Comments? We’d love to hear! Feel free to have your say below!


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(121) Comments

  1. Hi Mary,

    That’s cool packaging!
    “Stick Twist” means embroidery thread in German. Embroidering is “sticken”, an embroidered object is “gestickt”, embroidery is “Stickerei” etc.
    This gives you more buzz words for potential rabbit hole searches on line.
    My last name doesn’t indicate that I’m actually German 🙂

    Looking forwards to seeing the finished tree!


  2. Madeira’s silk floss is packaged the same way. Although I am not wild about the feel of their silk and it is not easy to come by in my neck of the woods, the package is genius!

    1. I’m going to try their silk eventually, Jane. It’s got to be Really Good, though, for me to like it. I don’t think there’s much competition out there in the silk world. Silk is either Really Good (the Au Ver a Soie products, for example) or it’s just sort of hum-ho. Most silk seems to fall in the latter category!

    2. I found Maderia’s rayon line first (the variegated ones are fun), but didn’t realise they did silk as well until I found some in a de-stash sale last September. I paid a trifling amount for ~11 “sachets”, most of which were untouched.

      Things to note about their silk – a pack contains 5m and it’s _four_ stranded.

      Barnyarns here in the UK appear to stock the full range of Maderia silk floss. On that website, it claims that this silk is colourfast up to 60oC and can be machine washed – perhaps this explains the slightly different “feel” of the thread?

  3. I’ll have to check out their cotton. Madeira has been my go-to silk for years, partly because I love the packaging so much!!

  4. A few years ago I ordered Madeira Cotton Floss from Nancy’s Notions. nancysnotions.com I don’t know if they still carry it but it might be a source for information. I have used it and like everything about it.

    1. Yes, that makes sense. It’s funny, though – on websites in English-speaking countries (the ones I saw were in Australia), they refer to them as “sticks” and Stick Twists. It’s kind of a neat name…. even if it is not quite the intended translation! 🙂

  5. I love Madeira floss. Years ago a store was closing and had their floss less than half price. I bought an arm load. The packaging is a huge sales point.

  6. Hi, Mary, Madeira’s packaging is very nice. I have some in my stash. Liz Turner Diehl used it in a number of her projects, back about the mid 1990’s, so my exposure is a bit dated. I took some classes from her at the Spirit of Cross Stitch conventions. At that time Madeira had a number of other fibers as well: silk, rayon (Decora), and wool (Burmilana). They were all very nice to use; as I recall, Liz used the Burmilana in some of her stumpwork. I even have some of the color cards: useful for substitution if I can’t find the “original”.

    I’m hoping we get to see your whole tree at some point!

  7. some years ago I bought a package like that………but it was silk they called it flosh, I didn’t try it right away and it got lost in a box……to make a long story short, I found it used it, I was so impressed, I tried to find more but no luck,I to liked the packaging,the main thing………it didn’t tangle ad it was clean and new every time I threaded the needle

  8. Here, in Portugal, we can find Mouliné Madeira and Silk Madeira as well. All European countries have Madeira threads -https://www.madeirausa.com/locations/

  9. I checked the site you mentioned, it doesn’t mention the new thread and they are wholesale only. Any other ideas about ways to buy?

    1. Hi, Jeanne – You could try calling Needlepoint This in Dallas (you can look them up online) and ask them. They don’t have it listed on their website (they don’t have an online shop). There’s also a shop called The Needle Bug in Alabama and The Knotted Needle in Michigan that apparently carry it, but again, it’s not listed on their websites, either.

    2. The Knotted Neeedle does carry it. That’s were I got mine. It’s not on their online catalogue but I’m sure they’d be happy to ship. Everyone there has always been more than willing to help.

  10. I’m excited! Never heard about Madeira as yet, not to mention that it’s a German manufacturer (a family business from Freiburg, as a matter of fact). And there’s even one shop in my city that carries it – no needlework shop, to be sure, but one selling sewing machines, but just 2.5 km from here, virtually close by. I HAVE to buy some and give it a try.
    The price per meter is a bit higher compared to DMC floss, as I can see it, at least in German online shops. DMC is € 0.119 per meter, Madeira € 0.145. But it’s not a huge difference. Buying locally is another story. For a skein of DMC floss that is € 0.95 online, my local needlework shop charges € 1.60 (after all that’s $ 1.83 at today’s rate)! So I’m curious how much the Madeira will be in the shop. But I will try it anyway, because the package looks really enticing.
    NB: “Sticktwist” means just embroidery floss, the packages are called “Spiralpackung”.
    Thanks for introducing this thread!

    Angela from the Ore Mountains

  11. I called & More Threads, and they are a distributor that only deals with established stores. They do have a store for the public in Dallas called Needlepoint This.

  12. I don’t see the Madeira thread listed on & More Threads website. I looked at all of the thread options. I would like to try it out, I love the packaging!

    1. Hi, Christine – They’re a distributor, so unless you’re actually a store, they won’t sell it to you directly. There are only a few needlepoint shops in the States that carry it, but none of them have it on their websites right now – which is why I didn’t mention them. There’s no point, if it’s not listed for purchasing.

  13. Hi Mary –

    I found Madeira silk floss on Terry Miller Design’s etsy shop. Shipping was a bit high but the floss itself was reasonable. She is selling it in ‘lots’ with some variety.

    Oh and thank you for convincing me I might be able to embroider again! I learned as a child and I dearly love hand embroidery and a little cross stitch. Now I just need to learn a little patience!


  14. I have a fist full of Madeira threads at home, free sticks that come with various British cross stitching magazines. I’ve been hesitant to try them but now it’s not such an unknown. One question: you mentioned putting any leftover strands of floss through the hanging hole. Is that how you would then store them when you’re done with a project? With my little cardboard bobbins, I can wrap leftovers and they’re not dangling.

    1. No, if I’m finished with a project and I have a strand that’s been separated left over, I’d probably take a blunt laying tool and stuff it back into the package! Or just wind it on something to use later. I’m not a real stickler for saving partial strands of cotton in a fastidious way. I’ll often just roll it up with other strands, to use for testing stitches or what-have-you.

  15. I was interested in this thread and thought I’d look into it, but unfortunately they only sell to “Brick and Mortar” stores. 🙁 So the likelihood of getting any is not going to be easy. I guess the best way would be to talk to a local store and see if they would into it and possibly carry it. It sounds like wonderful thread and I would love to get my hands on it.

  16. It sounds lovely and soft being of long-staple Egyptian cotton. Is this true ? Although I do like the hand dyed not so much because it is not very soft but the depth I feel it gives to the overall stitchery piece ? How about anyone else ? Thank you, Pam, Michigan.

  17. Good morning, Mary,
    I was first introduced to Madeira threads through the Cross Stitch Guild in London. They are the threads that owner Jane Greenoff swears by and they are used in her cross stitch kits. I purchased some through the Guild and then found some through Etsy. Those at Etsy are random bunches, but I believe the price was reasonable. The only issue I had in ordering a second bunch was duplicates, which the owner got a little testy over when I mentioned it. I have used the threads in Jane’s kits and they are very nice to work with. They look lovely in completed designs. I am working on aone of her designs now and do love working with the Madeira threads.
    Sandra Frye

    1. I forgot that I also ordered these from Nancy’s Notions. It was a nice variety of colors. Regarding the packaging, I have a few similar packs from the ‘80s that were distributed by DMC, if I remember correctly. Never used them because winding the skeins on floss bobbins was the rage then for me.

  18. I was recently given a couple skeins of Madeira. I haven’t stitched anything with them yet (unfortunately the skeins were pink and gold, when my heart yearns for greens, but I digress.) They have the DMC equivalent numbers right on the package, and the way they are put up is sheer genius.

  19. I don’t know if this as been mentioned before, but you can sample the threads in a cross stitch magazine from the UK. These magazines come with free project kits that sometimes include Madeira threads. Just check the package for the maderia thread. I buy mine at Barnes and Noble but Joann’s sometimes carry them. The cost is a bit high but you get the magazine with wonderful patterns!
    Just my thoughts


  20. Hi Mary

    I’ve been ordering this wonderful floss from terrymillerdesigns on Etsy. She offers color stick bundles for around $20 and a lovely assortment of colors for $33. Average price, as you mentioned is $1.10 each. Everything in your post says it all about this great product…I’m definitely a fan!

    (This isn’t an ad or promo bit; I really don’t know her personally, I just buy her floss).

  21. Yes – I like Madiera and use it frequently. I was introduced to it by purchasing the Liz Turner Diehl garden kits and collected quite a few of them that way.

    The only downside to the packaging is “When using two or three strands, what do you do with the remainder before you use it?”

    You suggest putting it back in the hole on the top, but that only works if you are using a few colors.

    I still use it and buy it, but transfer the entire package into the plastic bags that you can put on a ring when I am doing a project.

    Linda Schirmer

  22. I haven’t used the cotton floss but Madeira has a silk floss range that is very reasonably priced if you want to try silk stitching. I really like it.

  23. I haven’t seen these for years! My Mom had quite a few of these when I was growing up, although she preferred DMC. They also had some great metallics in the same type of packaging, and I believe they used to make rayon too. The design of the packaging is genius; in between projects, my Mom used to put them into a binder full of photo pages – which were just big enough for the stick – and put any used threads in the same pocket with the stick to keep them together. Wouldn’t work well for a large amount of colours, but worked great for 20 or 30. Hope these become more widely available here 🙂

  24. I have used Madeira silk threads and love all the wonderful colours. Will now look for the stranded cotton. Thank you Mary for this informative article.

  25. I love seeing your embroidery projects unfold! It is so inspirational! Your color choices on this tree are beautiful. Also, glad to learn about Madeira thread. I know I’ve seen it before, but don’t recall where. I would like to give it a try so it’s nice to know it is good quality. The packaging seems very inviting….no more tangled messes & a great way to store. On another topic, haven’t had a chance to buy your pre-printed Christmas towel set yet because they’ve sold out so quickly. I hope you’ll consider making more!

  26. Madeira threads were available in local stitching shops in Canada where we spent many summers. Perhaps some of the mail order vendors there might carry them.

  27. Sewing partsonline.com has some available. It doesn’t look like they have a wide assortment of colors (about 45 mostly darker colors based on a quick glance). They use the term Mouline in the label, so try that in the search. They have many more Madeira threads on spools for machine embroidery and sewing.

    I’ve been restoring my Mom’s vintage Singer machine, so I’ve been using that site as a source for parts and attachments.

    Patti in Ohio

  28. Interesting. I remember some charts years ago in Madeira and current UK charts but have never seen it. Is it shinier due to the mercerization process?

    Bonus points for the Music Man reference.

  29. I absolutely love Madeira threads! I have stitched with both the stranded cottons and the silks and love the way they handle, the colors, and the packaging. The only drawback is finding them “in the flesh” at a shop near you. I have a very old Madeira silk thread card and have used it for color reference. I need to see about acquiring one for the cottons.

  30. I have used it before and I have some in my stash. I liked it but it is more expensive and difficult to find. Would I switch from DMC? Probably not as I am heavily invested in it. Thanks for your bog.I enjoy reading it!

  31. At present I am doing death by cross stitch by Julia lines and am using the Madeira
    thread . It is really lovely to use.

  32. It looks worth finding just for the packaging! My floss box often looks like a bird’s nest.
    And speaking of birds… Love the Music Man reference.

  33. I used to work in a US shop (now closed) that sold Madiera cotton and silk. Whenever someone bought it, we demonstrated how to open the package correctly, so they wouldn’t wind up with a big tangle. I used it a fair bit on example pieces and always liked it. Every once in a while, you’ll get a stick that twists up inside, or where the floss got caught in the pressed edge and you have to cut it free, but those are quite rare.

  34. Those sewing machine stores carrying Madeira thread are probably selling machine embroidery thread that comes on spools. Madeira thread has long been popular with machine embroideriers.

  35. The Dallas, Texas outlet only sells wholesale. Please suggest other businesses that sell to the public. Thank you.

  36. Hi Mary,
    You seem to like the packaging. I haven’t seen nor tried those threads, but I think I would keeps using DMC’s because they limit packaging to the bare minimum. I think we have to protect the environment. And every piece of plastic or bag we are adding is polluting more our planet. We should ask companies to limit the packaging, not to add.

    1. I suspect that the packaging here is significantly less than the baggies that many people use to store their floss, or even less than the plastic used for the bobbins and the boxes to store the bobbins in. It is not a high grade, heavy plastic, if it is plastic at all. It feels to me more like smooth paper. The window feels like a somewhat stiff cellophane.

    2. It feels and looks like cellophane, both clear for the window and with some opaque colour for the rest.

  37. Dear Mary ,I have used Madera Thread but not for a while ,Tgere are not many stockists in Brisbane ,a lot of stores seem to be stocking The other threads particularly Cosmo.Mt nearest store is not ordering any more D M C either.
    I liked Madera fit thread painting it sits well against the neighbouring thread .

  38. Hello Mary.
    I went to the “& More Threads” website as you suggested; unfortunately they only sell to brick and mortar stores. They did list 3 US stores which they sell to but I didn’t call them to see if the Madeira threads could be ordered (the threads were not listed on any of the sites).
    However, after searching online I did come across another website which did offer the stick Madeira threads, only they seem to be in a limited amount of colors. Perhaps more colors could be ordered? I didn’t check. The website is listed below.

    I hope this proves fruitful. I’ll keep looking and if I find any others online stores I’ll let you know.

    L. Payne

  39. What’s considered the best embroidery cotton? DMC quality seems to have really gone downhill to me, it’s like what Anchor used to be.

  40. Here in Australia, I have a range of Madeira cotton threads which I have used for many years. I do like the thread, it is lovely to stitch with, and the packaging makes it super easy to store. However I got caught on one project because the length in the packet is much less than, say, a skein of DMC (5m as opposed to approx 8m for DMC) … and of course at that time I was nowhere near the beach-side store where I bought my Madeira supplies!

    1. Oh wow – most of the Madeira cotton I’ve seen comes in a 10 meter package (like these I’ve pictured) which is actually two meters more than DMC stranded cotton. I’m surprised they sell it in smaller packages in other countries – unless it was specially packaged for a kit or something.

  41. Hello Mary – writing to you from the UK

    First of all, thank you for your fantastic website, newsletter, blog etc. I am new to embroidery and learning so much from the information you provide.

    I have just read this article regarding Madeira thread. As you mention this is readily available in the UK.

    Also read the information about Floche and Coton Floche a Broder. Despite extensive searching, Floche does not appear to be available in the UK but retailers are promoting Coton Floche a Broder. So valuable to know this is not the same thread.

    As I’m sure you are aware, postage from the US is a hefty charge plus it is likely you will pay UK customs duty. Together, these fees can end up costing more than the items you have purchased.

    So I was wondering if there is any similarity in quality between Madeira thread and Floche. Hope you are not groaning with horror at this question but as I don’t have experience of either, I thought it wise to seek your opinion.

    Many thanks in advance


    1. Hi, Sheila – The Madeira thread I’m talking about above is stranded cotton. If you want to compare it to a DMC thread, the direct comparison would be DMC stranded cotton. It is not floche!

  42. I used this thread at a class Jeannie Baumeister taught at Peanut and Butter N Jelly Kids in Mobile, AL Anna Marie had many kinds of Madeira, not just embroidery floss. They usually ship the same day.

  43. It seems so interesting. It should be nice to have the collection equally in Canada !
    Diane from Montréal in Québec

  44. Can’t find the Madeira cotton thread on the site you mentioned, nor on the three websites they directed me to.

    1. None of them have it stocked on their website right now, which is why I mentioned that in the article. &More is the distributor – hopefully they’ll list it eventually, and hopefully the shops that carry will actually stock it in their online stores. I’ll let folks know if I find some other sources.

  45. I logged on to the &More site hoping to see an array of Madeira threads. I was disappointed that none were shown. Tomorrow, I’ll try to access the needlework
    shops which, she says, carry the Madeira threads. Thanks for sharing news about this thread.

    1. Hi, Patricia – I can’t find any of the shops mentioned with any stock on their websites right now. I’ll let people know if I hear of any online shop carrying the thread and actually stocking it on their websites.

  46. I ran out of a DMC color in Germany once and after much frustration in the local shop, tried to let the shop owner know I wanted to get more of that or a compatible color. I got the Madeira. I truly hate DMC for so many reasons and have switched to Sullivan’s as I feel it is a much better and consistent product among other things. I really liked the Madeira but it is next to impossible to find here so hope it will be more widely distributed.

  47. I have just tried the madeira thread on one of your thousand flowers miniature designs because the main body color was out of stock. I find that it is a bit snug compared to the other silks at 48 count. It should be perfect with the forty count. It’s making the critters look a little more padded and fuzzy so it’s ok. It also seems to be a slightly looser twist than the others which is neither a plus or minus but something to be aware of. I liked the ease of dispensing the Madeira floss until I tried to figure out how to store the other 5 stands until needed. How are you handling that issue ?

  48. As usual, you did a great job in introducing this beautiful thread. I kept going back to the piece you are working on and all I can say is WOW, love the sheen, and the beautiful rich colors. The variegated is is so nice. Will keep my eye out for this thread as I can’t imagine that Stitchers won’t be asking their shops to stock it! Thanks for all you do to keep us informed about all the new things that are out.

  49. I’ve been using Madeira, both cotton and silk, for quite a few years. My local shop carries a full range, and I love the colours, packaging, and everything you have mentioned. I’m in Australia.

  50. They are lovely threads to stitch with, but the one problem I have with the packaging is what to do when, after travelling in your sewing bag for a day, the threads have come loose from the notch in the bottom. You cannot put them back, no matter how hard you try….I will say however, that I do appreciate that the way they are stored in the packet means they never, ever tangle.

  51. I love Madeira stranded cotton and have used it for years – I’ve always found it to be excellent quality and the packaging is very effective. It’s also available as 440 metre cones, which is great for classes or even if you think you’re going to be using the same colours a lot!

  52. I have loved Madera thread for a long time. Love the sheen, ease of use, colours, price. Thank you for your article, I hope other Embroiderers try this thread and enjoy stitching with it as well.

  53. I have used Madeira thread for smocking and I loved it. Easy to use lovely shades and thread kept clean and untangled in sheath. I picked it up when on holiday in Australia but couldn’t find it here so reverted to DMC and Anchor.
    I must check availability here online.

  54. I have only used their silk thread in the same packaging. I quite like it. I am in the UK.
    I have never used the cotton. I use mostly DMC and Anchor for cotton.
    Like you, I have also used the top hole to secure bits of left over thread. Years ago, I used to hang them with drawing pins on the inside of a door, using the hole as well.

  55. Hello~
    I was able to locate the Madeira cotton floss on Etsy at terrymiller designs. She has lots of three bundles with different colors of 18 skeins for $19.99 plus shipping.


  56. Yes, Madeira stranded cotton is available in Sydney, Australia (where I live). I’ve never actually used it so thank you for all that good information. Next time I need some embroidery stranded cotton I’ll try Madeira.

  57. Hi
    I’ve been using this thread for years and really like. I also like their silks but not as much as au Ver au Soie. This is purely personal preference and not a comment on the quality. I was first introduced to it when I bought some threads on eBay years ago and there was a few packages of Madiera in the lot. On another occasion a visiting teacher used it in a workshop she gave to my embroidery guild. I do like it and the selection of colours it offers. I’m in eastern Canada so it is hard to get your hands on it. I usually pick it up when I travel across the pond. I’m looking forward to seeing what you think of the silk.

  58. I’ve gotten some of their cotton, silk and rayon from various kits and classes I’ve taken and love it. I go into the leftovers all the time for other small projects but don’t have a wide range of choices. I’m glad to hear it is becoming available in the States.

  59. Thankyou Mary I love reading your blog and I have recently started to embroider and find your videos, tips and techniques the best. I sit stitching with iPhone and your videos so that I can learn the stitches. I am using DMC pearl cotton and will certainly try some Madeira given it looks like it does not get into a tangle.

  60. I have been embroidering since I was a young girl and have gone through phases. I alternated since 1979 with quilting and embroidery. Right now I am in the embroidery. You always share the best stuff. Today it is the Madeira thread on a stick. So cool. Can’t wait to try it. I just bought a couple of dmc skeins at 49 cents each but a 1.10 is not so bad for quality thread. Look forward to trying it.
    Ironically I was at a quilt and fiber show a couple of weeks ago and there was a vintage booth. She had these skeins of Potters Braided Art Floss It is silk thread. They are on a cardboard flat stick and there is a paper wrapper with all the instructions over it. I just had to buy two. There are from 1906.

    I also bought a couple of months ago a couple of pkgs of Tulip needles. Very nice indeed.
    I so enjoy your emails . I have learned many things.

  61. Was inspired by your post on Madeira floss. Couldn’t find any in Canada; however, after much searching, I’ve found a Polish Company that sells Madeira threads at an incredibly reasonable price, and ships internationally. Have a look: Pasmanteria

    I’ve ordered some through my Paypal account. Hopefully, the transaction will run smoothly.

  62. I have some of the Madeira Embroidery Thread. Yes, there is a definite difference in the way it looks & feels. Madeira Thread is definitely a better quality thread. I Love
    it and will continue to use it.
    My question though is; about how long should I expect to wait to receive my order when placed. I do not have an order presently. Just wanted to know for future reference.
    Thank you for addressing the subject of Madeira Embroidery Thread. I learned something (which is always nice). Have a great weekend and I hope you had a wonderful 4th Of July.
    Nancy Aichele

    1. Hi, Nancy – I’m a little confused about your question. How long would you expect to wait for what order? For Madeira threads from the manufacturer? Or are you talking about an order for the kit? The kit hasn’t been released yet. When it is, it’s mailed Priority, so in the US, that means you’d have it within at least 3 days, and in some places, 2 days. If you’re talking about ordering Madeira threads, you’d have to ask the distributor how long it would take to get an order filled.

  63. Have you ever reviewed the Japanese floss Cosmo from Lecien? I have found it to be incredible with a gorgeous sheen. It seems it is available in quitting stores.

    Hope you are ok


  64. Dear Mary,

    What size locked jump ring did you use to store the Madiera thread mentioned in this post?

    Where do you buy them? I would like to use the locked jump rings for my Leafy Tree threads.



    1. Oh gosh, I think I have 3” jump rings, but I’ve had them For Ever, so I’m not sure where I got them. I would try a hardware store. Or maybe an office supply store? Have you tried Amazon? They probably have them there – if you can get them without shipping. They shouldn’t be expensive – jump rings are not high dollar items.

  65. Hi,
    I must not be using the right terms for searching. I can’t find individual skeins for sale online. I purchased a crosstitch kit from Yiota’s Xstitch; I believe they are in the UK. I need additional thread colors to finish the project. I tried to get DMC from a conversion chart, but the colors don’t match up very well. I recently sent an email to Yiota’s and am waiting for a response. Anything you could suggest would be much appreciated.

    Thank you, Jean

    1. There aren’t too many places that I know of in the States that sell this thread individually, and I don’t know of any place online. I’ve heard there’s a needlepoint shop in Alabama somewhere that stocks them, but they don’t have an online presence. So I can’t really help you with a shop here. They are apparently more common in Europe, but again, I don’t know where, online, you’d find them.

    2. If you go to Madeira’s site and choose ‘hobby & craft’ right at the bottom in small type, then tell them you are interested in their products (rather than selling them), you’ll get to a page which lets you browse their various lines. You don’t seem to be able to buy from them, but there’s a shop finder which lets you choose by country/city and filter by distributor/shop/online. It does not list everywhere which sells them, but it does show some. (For the UK, it only shows 1 shop and 1 distributor, but you can actually buy it in other places, as far as I can tell.) In the UK, barnyarns.co.uk is ‘officially’ a shop carrying Madeira (including their floss). I don’t know if they ship internationally, but they’re certainly online. (I’d guess they ship globally, but I didn’t check.) https://garne.madeira.de/1/home/ for the shop-finder, products etc. In the US, Madeira only lists a distributor (http://www.tacony.com/), but they must distribute to somebody who does sell stuff, I guess. In any case, you could email them to ask.

  66. Needlepoint This in Dallas, Texas carries a large line of this thread; not every color, but a good majority of the line.

  67. Could you mix this thread with DMC or Anchor? I’m wondering how it compares in terms of (1) sheen and (2) thickness. (Not asking about colour matches or anything like that.) Would be nice to have a reliable and less expensive option than Anchor/DMC. (In the UK, this stuff seems to be significantly cheaper than Anchor/DMC, which are very pricey.)

  68. I have ordered several kits from Bothy Threads in Great Britain. I understand that they use Madeira floss. Unfortunately, the kits come only with the names of the colors, for example Dark sage, and a symbol but no numbers. If you run out of a color or want to use the chart again, in short, you’re out of luck!
    I am looking for a color card that lists the numbers of the colors so I can order replacement floss. Thanks, Ruth Walton

  69. I love Maderia embroidery mouline thread. I have used other brands of floss.
    I love the feel, texture, ease of use plus packaging of this brand. I use less to none of thread conditioner with this brand.
    I know plastic pkg is a concern. But i cut pkg up into small pieces when empty.
    My issue is trying to find this brand in more variety of colors.
    I found this floss on accident at Nancys notions. They do not carry very many colors. Up till today i had not seen any company in usa selling.

  70. I am very disapointed with my experiece trying to get help. I have some embroidery kits that my late husband bought me.The nmbers of the threads have change quite a while ago and I can’t find out the new numbers. I have written to 4 different places, Madiera included,to ask for helpand not 1 has had the good manners to even bother to reply. Can you help? What I need is the colour and name of the shade of the thread from around 1980’s and what they were changed to after that. When I askd Google all I get is Madieera to DMC Anchor etc. I have trouble getting round now and would love to finish theae Wil you please help?
    Thank you, Barbara Duke

    1. Hi, Barbara,

      Thanks for your note! I’m afraid I’m not a Madeira distributor and I don’t have an “in” with the company, to be able to get you any answers. Most companies like this are owned by larger holding companies (they belong to groups of companies held by larger companies), and the people who actually own and manage them don’t necessarily know about the products that they sell, their history, etc. Larger thread companies tend to change hands, change management, etc., often, from what I’ve seen.

      Your best bet might be to color match your threads with something like DMC, which is much easier to come by, if you have threads from the kits. If you just have color lists, then that’s where a conversation chart, like DMC to Madeira, Anchor to Madeira, etc., would come in handy. If you have an image of the finished piece, though, you might be able to come up with your own color scheme and find DMC or other easier to come by threads for finishing the kits.

      If the designs are already started, though, I’d probably try color matching with DMC and trying to get as close to the original colors as possible. It would take some time to do it, but if you’re determined to finish the kits, that might be your best bet.

  71. I like the Maderia floss and packaging. I have about half the colors but don’t know how to store them. I have a great storage system for my DMC and other floss, but would like a storage system for the Maderia that work with the packaging.

    1. There’s a whole in the Madeira packaging that allows for a jump ring to pass through it, so you could hang them on a jump ring. I find that a bit messy, though – not as compact as a boxed system.

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