How to use Iron-on Threads on fabric

Kreinik Iron-on metallic threads make it easy to add sparkle to story quilts, miniature quilts, wall hangings, fiber art, crazy quilts, ornaments, lampshades and other fabric projects. Create outlines, swirls, borders, bows, webs, and words without the mess of glue or taking the time to stitch an embellishment. When you want a quick embellishment, these fibers are perfect. They come in two sizes: round Medium #16 Braid and flat 1/8” Ribbon.


Step 1: decide on a design


  • Draw a design or write words and names freehand with a fabric pencil or disappearing ink pen
  • Or use a stencil to trace an outline or pattern onto your fabric
  • Or follow the lines already printed on the fabric
  • Tip: the flat ribbon is ideal for borders or outlines, while the round braid is better for words and finer lines

Step 2: have supplies


  • the fabric you’re decorating (fabric should be pre-washed and pre-shrunk)
  • Kreinik Iron-on Threads in colors to match your project
  • Smooth heatproof surface like ironing board, computer mouse pad or fabric covered cardboard
  • Clover brand mini-iron or a household iron
  • Kreinik  Adhesive Teflon press cloth—needed to prevent the thread from sticking to your iron.—available in several sizes
  • Sharp scissors to cut the thread when you’re finished 

Step 3: iron!


  • First, while your iron is unplugged, apply the Adhesive Press Cloth to the plate of your iron. Trim if needed. If you get any bubbles, smooth them out with your fingers, or pop them with a pin and then smooth the area.
  • Turn  your iron onto high and allow it to heat thoroughly (“high” may also be the “linen” setting on some irons). The iron must be on high heat for the thread to adhere properly.
  • Place the thread at a beginning point of your design
  • Press with iron for a few seconds or until the thread adheres.
  • Follow this procedure, working one section at a time for the rest of your design.
  • When finished, clip the thread



Frequently Asked Questions:

  • “Can they be washed?” Yes, and no. Yes, they can be washed, but sometimes the agitation of a washing machine can make them pop off. If so, touch up with a hot iron. We recommend, however, that you couch them down after placement if using on anything that will need to be washed. That will make them secure.
  • “Can you also use them on paper?”  Yes, use these fibers on wood, paper, fabric. You can use them on stitched needlepoint and cross stitch designs. Use them with polymer clay for jewelry too.
  • “Are they suitable for all ages?” As long as a child is old enough to handle a hot iron, they should be fine. We have taught elementary school aged children, with adult supervision, and everyone had a great time.
  • “Do you have to use a craft iron?” You can use a home iron as well. The key is that your iron should have a non-stick coating to keep the adhesive in the thread from sticking to your iron. If your iron isn’t non-stick, simply use a Kreinik Adhesive Press Cloth (available in different sizes). 

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