Terrific Tip Tuesday: Thread Location


Today’s tip is about where to put the thread on your machine. Most machines are designed with at least one vertical spool holder and one horizontal spool holder.


Thread that is wound with a pattern (like Aurifil) works well on either spool holder.


However, thread that is wound straight (like Sulky and YLI) needs to be on the vertical spool holder.


This will make for much happier thread which means smoother tension and less breakage.
xo LC

41 thoughts on “Terrific Tip Tuesday: Thread Location

  1. I did know this; however, on the new less expensive machines, there is only a horizontal spool pin. I teach a machine class and see this fairly often.

  2. Thanks for the info. I have never liked the horizontal thread holder on the newer machines. I guess I am old fashioned. But now I understand a bit more. I often use the vertical because I feel more comfortable with it. I am thankful my machine offers both!

  3. I don’t know how to thread my Bernina 630 using the vertical holder…..I’ve read the whole instruction book and it doesn’t say…..any help would be appreciated…

    • When using the vertical spool pin, thread your machine as you would when using the horizontal spool pin. The only thing that I do differently is I run the thread through the little thread guide that is right behind the bobbin winder pin before I take it to the rear thread guide on the left back of the machine.

    • Go onto the Bernina website & look up 630 tutorials. This will show you how to thread the machine. Or ring the dealer where you purchased the machine, they should know how to do it. Cheers

    • I consulted my dealer and she said that you thread it the same way as the horizontal thread holder. If you’re using a fragile thread, you can use the extra guide that’s behind the bobbin winder. Hope that helps!

  4. Wow that is one thing I never thought about….now I have a question. How does one know which one to use on other threads….

  5. Those who don’t have a vertical thread holder, try using a stand-alone thread holder. Works for me!

  6. Wow I have both and always wonder why they do that? Great tip of the day. Thanks for the great tip. Every little bit helps . When I bought my machine they gave me a class on it but never said anything about this. Thx again.

  7. If yo dont have a place for the horizontal thread on your machine, the best way is to attach a saftey pin to the top of your machine, then put your thread into a cup or glass. Run the thread up through the circle in the safety pin and through the machine as normal. works brilliant!

    • I did this for years!! It does work well, but I’ve since graduated to the stand alone thread stand. This is great when you don’t have a stand.

  8. I have a spool cap on my horizontal spool pin, and I use a spool net with regular wound thread all the time and have no tension or breakage issues. If your spool has a cut notch in the end, thread will definately catch on that and break on the horizontal spool, but other than that I have never had a problem.

    • I only have the horizontal on my machine so with smooth thread and a catch on it just make sure the catch is to the back and not the front on the spool. I haven’t had ant breakage problems.

  9. I recently bought a new Viking Machine – and told the instructor I had seen on a sewing show, where a representative from a thread manufacture said this and she told me it doesnt matter – but when I sewed the way she wanted the tread to pull off – it seemed the tension was off and my material slightly puckered even with the right stabilizer – I have since used the above as a guide and it seems I have better stitches – Thanks for the back up!

  10. It also matters which way the thread feeds off the spool when you thread your machine…no matter whether you’re using the spool horizontally or vertically….always check your manual to see which way it should feed off the spool and into your machine….I spent hours once trying to help someone with her machine….re threading the machine and bobbins etc didn’t help until that light bulb moment when I thought of how the thread was coming off the spool…..it was coming up the back (horizontally) of the spool and needed to come up the front…something so simple almost had me ripping her and my hair out lol Great tip about the correct set up of the spool if patterned or straight….thank you, I shall be passing it onto the girls at my quilting group.


  11. I use Presencia thread and it has a pattern. I was told by their representative that it works best if vertical. There is a raised logo on the spool and I have found that if I go horizontal it will catch on that logo and break. So, even though it has a pattern I always go vertical and have no problems that way.

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