Different Types of Packages Used in Sewing Thread Manufacturing


Sewing threads are the integrals of forming seams that can be used to attach the fabric, finish edges of the fabric, or do decorative motives such as for embroidery. You can check the different properties and characteristics of the sewing thread here. This article will be on types of packages that the sewing threads are available in the market both for domestic and industrial applications.

There are various forms of sewing thread packages available in the market. This is mainly because of the specific package requirement for different types of machines and thread materials. Even though the work of a sewing machine is to sew but it is most often that the machines used in export houses are different from that which is used at home.

The packaging requirement can be found in the sewing machine manual that comes in the box. For identification, there are often color indications on the packages according to size or type to assist with the selection of the package and thread for the end-users. Also, sewing thread is sold by the actual length of the thread in the package rather than the weight. 

Related Post: Thread consumption calculation method

The various types of sewing thread packages are:
  1. Spools
  2. Cops
  3. Cones
  4. Vicones
  5. Containers
  6. Cocoons
  7. Pre-wound bobbins
  8. Large packages

1. Spools: 

These have a relatively short length of thread and are wounded parallelly. It has flanges (flat disk-shaped stopper) on both ends that restrict the thread from unwinding. These are most often used in home sewing machines as the requirement of the thread is fairly low from that of in industries. The common length of the thread ranges from 22m, 100m, 125m, 500m, 1000m. These are also used for embroidery threads and are 1000m in length. Other applications of this can be found in threads used for shoe, leather, etc.
Fig-1: Embroidery thread 0.1mm (1000m)

2. Cop: 

These are the vastly adapted of all the types because of its use in the lockstitch machine. the tread is cross-wound on the cop package to increase in off-winding and the center tube is made of plastic or paper. These are available in the market with a thread length of 150m, 300m, 900m. these are more suitable for cotton, spun polyester, spun nylon, or core-spun thread and not for fine filament threads as they can slip at the top and bottom due to the absence of flanges.

Fig-2: Spun polyester thread (180m)

3. Cones: 

These are tapered shape spool made of paper or plastic material. They mainly contain the longer length of sewing thread from 450m-25000m with length of the cones varying from 10-15cm. It provides for good unwinding performance due to its shape and thus used in high-speed sewing machines like cover-stitch and over edge machines. Due to its sheer quantity, it is considered the most economical form of thread package especially where the consumption is high.

Fig-3: Cotton thread (900m)

4. Vicones: 

These are the combination of spool and cops with parallel tubes with a flange at the bottom. These are designed to contain sewing thread ranging from 1000-5000m in length with its length ranging from 6.5-9cm. These are mostly used for packaging smooth filament thread like that of embroidery thread.

Fig-4: Embroidery thread 0.11mm & 0.16mm(20000m)

5. Container: 

These are designed to handle smooth thread mostly for monofilament sewing thread that is complicated to control with traditional thread packages.

Fig-5: Monofilament nylon thread

6. Cocoons:

Unlike the others, these have a hollow structure with the absence of the center tube. These are used in the shuttle of multi-needle quilting machines and some kind of embroidery machines.

7. Pre-wound bobbins: 

These are precision-wound packages intended for replacing traditional bobbins in lockstitch machines. The thread package is more consistent with availability for some common machine models. It eliminates the need to wind the bobbin thread thus increasing productivity. It comes in various styles with changing height and diameter according to the material of the yarn and shape of the bobbin. It has to be noted that, with the increase in thread’s tensile strength, the number of yards thread on the bobbin decreases.

Fig-7: Pre-wound bobbin thread

8. Large package: 

These are used in overedge and cover stitch machines and can hold threads of length 20,000m or above. The threads are wound on large cones or tubes.

Fig-8: 67000m monofilament nylon thread

It is most often that the thread packages are specific to a certain type of threads like fine filament yarns are wound in spool, embroidery threads are packed in v-cones (the shape supports it in upright positions), etc.

Apart from this, choosing of proper thread package is very important as higher production demands for minimum thread handling time. This is only possible when the thread package used for sewing is in proportion to the quantity of product to be sewn. An example of this can be when the order is huge a thread package of 900m will be more efficient than that of lower length package as it would mean a lesser change of thread during sewing.

A proper calculation of thread consumption is the key to the selection of the right thread package. In a production house where a lot of machines are involved in manufacturing different styles, it should be taken care, that there are enough threads available for all the machines without an excess of stock. Normally sewing thread comes in a box of 10 threads and purchasing can be made accordingly. Also, there is an added option of thread winding machine which enables larger cones to be re-winded into smaller comes which can be distributed and used by several machines. 

Also, learn about thread numbering (Tex and Tkt.) 


Soumyadeep Saha

Soumyadeep Saha holds a Master's Degree in Fashion Technology from NIFT, New Delhi. He is also a graduate in apparel production. His area of interest includes Quality Assurance and technology implementations in Apparel Production.

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