Iron-on Thread Unleashes Employee’s Inner Crafter

Guest Blog by Kreinik Controller Beth Judy

Since I started working at Kreinik almost two years ago, I’ve admired the company’s reputation for making and selling quality thread and craft-related products.  However as a newbie crafter, I’d never personally experimented with any of our products until recently when I discovered Kreinik’s iron-on thread after trading my left-brain numbers hat for a right-brain craft class on how to make greeting cards patterned like quilt blocks.

My instructor for the class taught us to how to make three different quilt patterns on cards using graph paper.   After learning about my class, Mr. Kreinik encouraged me to further embellish my cards with Kreinik’s iron-on thread to give them an extra special touch.  I first asked him for a demonstration of how to work with the thread and miniature iron, which we also sell.  After letting the iron warm up just a few minutes, Doug showed me how easy it was to apply the iron-on trim to my card’s perimeter.  As I watched the thread seem to magically stick to the paper, I stared in wonder as though I were a kid witnessing a magician pull a rabbit out of a hat.

It was now my turn to try my hand with iron and thread.  After selecting an iron-on braid out of the cornucopia of shades and widths Kreinik offers and pressing the mini iron slowly over the thread in the shape of a border, I was amazed at how easy the 1/8” iron-on ribbon was to work with and how effortlessly it turned corners.  Pride in my newly handcrafted card surged as I saw how quickly the application of Kreinik’s iron-on thread transformed my card with an added pop of dimension.  The iron-on braids gave my otherwise finished cards an extra layer of detail, which yielded a more polished look.

I had so much fun, in fact, with the mini iron and iron-on thread effect with my cards that I decided to purchase an iron for myself along with a few hand selected spools of thread for future card making.  I also learned that Kreinik’s iron-on threads have various applications for other products as well such as wood, glass, and fabric.  I’m already brainstorming its uses for future craft projects in other mediums.
Attesting to my newfound excitement in discovering and working with one of Kreinik’s products, one of my coworkers joked with Doug that he had created a monster by introducing me to the iron-on thread.   While I’m not sure her statement is totally accurate, I’m pretty certain I spotted a green-eyed wannabe crafter on the loose.


Voila! It's needlepoint you can use every day

For Kreinik's 40th anniversary celebration this year, the needlepoint company Voila! C'est Fini created a limited-edition gold crown painted canvas design. It is part of their Fab Fobs® line of keychains, where kits come complete with painted canvas, stitch guide, and keychain hardware. We love how useful this project is — and the finishing can be done at home, by you, at no extra cost. The motif features the Kreinik crown logo, but even if you don't want to celebrate Kreinik every day (who wouldn't?!), stitch it to celebrate your inner royalty, your diva status, or just to coordinate with the crown motifs so popular in home dec these days. Enjoy!

Crown Keychain Needlepoint Painted Canvas

Get the painted canvas, hardware, and threads from your favorite needlework store. Buy them individually, or Kreinik has a limited-edition kit featuring the following:

  • Crown design on canvas by Voila!
  • Kreinik silk and metallic threads: Tapestry #12 Braid 202HL Aztec Gold Hi Lustre and Kreinik Silk Serica 8050 Black
  • Coordinating grosgrain ribbon for finishing
  • Key fob hardware and ring for finishing

You will also need:
  • white fabric glue
  • pliers
  • paperweight or book
  1. Stitch the design in tent stitch using Kreinik Tapestry #12 Braid 202HL Aztec Gold Hi Lustre for the crown, and Kreinik Silk Serica 8050 Black for the background.
  2. When stitching is completed, trim off excess canvas to 1/2-inch along length of needlepoint. Along each end, trim flush with needlepoint.
  3. Place needlepoint top side down. Fold in edges to back of needlepoint and press with fingers, turning two rows of stitching so that canvas does not show along edges.
  4. Place a book or paper weight on top of your folded fob to hold the edges down to create a crease.
  5. Using white fabric glue, liberally apply glue to canvas ends. Wait 10 or 15 minutes for the glue to become tacky and press down onto needlepoint until it adheres. Keep pressing along the canvas until glue adheres firmly.
  6. Apply the paperweight or book again and let set for about 1/2 hour until glue adheres to canvas and needlepoint.
  7. When edges are glued securely, liberally apply white fabric glue to entire back of needlepoint piece. Be sure to apply the glue to the edges. Place ribbon on back and press down firmly with hands and let sit until completely dry. Trim ribbon to proper length.
  8. When dry, join the ends of the needlepoint to form a loop and place a thin line of glue along top edges to hold the edges together. Use your fingers to smooth out the ribbon inside the loop. Use your weight again to hold the ends until the glue dries.
  9. To attach the metal key fob, first remove the key ring from th metal jaws. Place the metal jaws to the raw ends of your looped needlepoint. Cover the metal jaws with a cloth and, applying gentle pressure, squeeze the jaws together with pliers until tight. Then reattach the key ring and Voila! you have a fab fob.

© Copyright Kreinik and Voila!
Voila! 5968 Michaux Street, Boca Raton, FL 33433

Kreinik Mfg. Co., Inc., PO Box 1966, Parkersburg WV 26102


If you teach, they will create

A letter from the Caribbean island nation of Dominica, West Indies

She went from making things to making things happen. Judy Joyce, the founder of American Traditional stencil company (now called Momenta), retired from her industry job some time ago and joined the Peace Corps. She continues to lead a creative life, including teaching crafts and embroidery to children. We love working with Judy and were inspired by the photos she sent recently after we donated some thread for her classes. We asked her to share details of the photos that inspire all of us to reach, teach, care, and share.

Judy writes,

The photos are from a 4-H workshop in Delices, Dominica, W.I. We had 26 youth ages 9-13 try their hand at crocheting. We used large plastic hooks from Coats and Clark and the colored shiny threads from Kreinik. We were making chains. Only two girls had tried crocheting before. The youth here do not have adults to teach them crafts.

I have always been "crafty". As a child, I made and sold knitted and crochet slippers, bags, woven pot holders. In high school I made and sold beaded jewelry, sewed clothes and paintings. In college, I had a route in the dorms selling jewelry each week. Then I started my own business making stencils and selling to stores around the world. I taught all over the world, appeared on numerous TV programs and authored several instructional books.

In 2008 I joined Peace Corps and was sent to Dominica to develop Eco Tourism. I spend most of my time with youth of all ages in 4-H, religion, teen groups, high school libraries, primary school arts and crafts and neighborhood youth. I'm hoping to get several trained and excited about making souvenir crafts.

I love what I do. It's challenging to think up and organize crafts each week for 67 youth. Donations from friends and businesses has helped a lot. Doug's threads were great. I used them on journals a few times and yarn dolls.

If anyone is interested in Peace Corps they can always email me or check on Facebook.

Thank you!

Judy Joyce (Barker)
American Traditional/Momenta


How-to: 10 Tips for Beading with Kreinik Threads

Earrings and necklace as seen in "Betsy Beads"
"Threads become the backdrop for fun, elegance, or a bit of glitz." - Brenda Franklin

"Betsy Beads" is the new hit book from XRX Books ( featuring stunning bead knitting projects, including the design in the photo shown here. It isspreading interest in bead knitting, one of the most beautiful ways you can use your knitting skills for creating intricate jewelry and accessories. Search "Kreinik" on and you will find additional bead crochet and bead knitting designs, all stunning and most — surprisingly — easy to make. Do you want to learn how? This blog will give you 10 Tips for Beading With Kreinik Threads.

You may not think that the thread shows much in beading, or matters much, but it does. We asked designers what they thought of Kreinik threads, and they offered helpful tips to share with you. Whether you're getting into bead crochet, bead knitting, surface embroidery, or other types of beadwork, Kreinik metallic and silk threads offer some benefits that you just can't get with other threads, such as:

1. 200+ colors from which to pick — "For beaded embroidery, the thread color should match the fabric or the beads," notes designer Kim Kotary. With the large range of Kreinik shades, you can find a color to match any bead.

2. Did we mention 200+ colors: With such a wide range, you have more complementary color choices when working a design where the thread shows around the beads. "Kreinik threads are SO PRETTY," says designer Vashti Braha.

Bead Stew "Fire Walk with Me" by Earth Faire
3. Metallics add elements of light to designs — "it catches the light" says designer Maria del Pinto, and it complements the color depth of dichroic and Venetian glass beads, for instance. "Metallic threads add a wonderful shimmer to the beaded knit," notes designer Brenda Franklin. She adds that a transparent bead on a metallic thread will have the shimmer and glow you look for in a silver-lined beads (lined beads often have smaller holes and lose their glow). Designer Betsy Hershberg says Kreinik Cable in particular "is a great choice for a true metallic jewelry look."

4. Kreinik metallic braids, cables, and ribbons are strong: Brenda Franklin notes in her book Beaded Knits Vol. 1 that "glass beads add weight, so the thread that is used for beaded knits must be able to support this extra weight." Brenda often uses Kreinik #8, 12 and 16 Braids for her projects. Vashti Braha uses the metallics "when I need just the right way to feature a dichroic glass pendant. Kreinik stands up to the kind of metallic color depth, and the sheer weight of the glass pieces."

Reversible Bracelet by Brenda Franklin
5. Kreinik silk threads are strong. Silk is natural and one of the strongest fibers you can find. Betsy Hershberg had this to report after trying Kreinik Silk Serica for projects in her book, Betsy Beads: "The silk is a joy to knit/bead with. I'm not sure if I can accurately describe one of its favorite qualities for me as a knitter, but it has to do with a certain amount of "stickiness" it has that allows it to hold for a very even tension i.e., the stitches stay the same size rather than slipping as a rayon thread might. And don't even get me started on the color range..... I am thrilled to have discovered it." About Silk Serica, she adds, "I just love the sheen and the hand of the silk and it stands up really well to the friction of being strung with quite small beads. The stitch definition is beautiful. And it is SO strong!"

6. Kreinik threads are flexible, won't kink: From Earth Faire, a bead and jewelry kit company, "These are very easy threads to use -- unlike most metallics, I haven't found in these a tendency to kink -- they lie smoothly and work well with just about all of the size beads that we use."

7. Kreinik metallics are hand and machine washable: Cotton threads tend to stretch, but with the Kreinik metallics, "stretching when wet is not an issue," notes Earth Faire.

8. They come in a variety of weights/sizes: About Kreinik Tapestry #12 Braid, for example, Vashti notes, "This thread seems to bridge sizes #10 and #20 cotton threads." Kreinik has six sizes of metallic braid, two sizes of metallic ribbon, and three sizes of silk thread, which means you can pick from several options to either match bead sizes or to create your own yarn/thread by combining with other thread types. Some of the thinner threads, like Kreinik Blending Filament, Very Fine #4 Braid, and the Machine Sewing Threads work well as carry-along fibers.

9. You can get thread in a variety of spool sizes: Since Kreinik makes their own threads, we can spool or cone any amount. Working on a large project, for instance? Choose a 50m cone, or special-order a custom size. The standard Kreinik spool sizes - from 10m to 20m on a spool — are ideal amounts for most jewelry projects.

10. Kreinik threads are available in stores or from online sources: that means you can always get what you want. Visit the Store Locator on, or buy online at

Examples of what you can make:

  • Beaded earrings
  • Beaded brooches
  • Beaded necklaces
  • Beaded ornaments
  • Beaded pendants
  • Beaded purses
  • Beaded socks
  • Beaded embroidery
  • Beaded trim for garments, home decor, fashion accessories

What to use

Consensus among bead knitters/crocheters is that metal hooks and needles work better than plastic or wooden ones. From designer Maria del Pinto: "You need a metal crochet hook because the plastic ones have surfaces that catch the threads which can ruin the finished look of a piece." Gwen Blakley Kinsler, founder of the Crochet Guild of America, adds, "Depending on the thread, I use a steel hook, sizes 6, 7 or 8."

  • Fine #8 Braid is great for crochet and fine needle lace work, and works well with size 11 seed beads.
  • Fine #8 Braid is frequently used by Earth Faire for beaded jewelry: "We have been using this thread with many of the Jewelry patterns from Brenda Franklin (see their "Jewelry Creations"  on web page). The color and sheen is fabulous and the hand as one works with it is extremely pleasing."
  • Tapestry #12 Braid is another favorite: "it is slightly heavier than the Fine Braid but we like its strength and it works with all but the tiniest of beads (and even sometimes with those)," notes the team at Earth Faire.
  • Medium #16 Braid: "Very firm knit structure, very strong braid that will support larger beads well," reports bead knitting designer Brenda Franklin. Some of the high lustre colors can be rough against skin, however.
  • Heavy #32 Braid and the 1/8" Ribbon are thicker metallics, both equivalent to a fingering/sock yarn, a Light Sport Weight and a size #5 cotton crochet thread, according to Vashti. Beads: "6/0 E-beads" aka "large seed beads" work with this size, but these thicker threads can be rough against skin.
  • Blending Filament is a soft, thin, tinsel-like thread. Rather than using the filament to string beads, we recommend that you use filament as a carry-along thread, worked with another thread type at the same time. It will add a subtle metallic shimmer.
  • Fashion Twist and Fine Twist: These two Kreinik Machine Sewing Metallic Threads are thin enough to use as a carry-along thread in bead knitting and crochet. They are strong, but also anti-microbial, offering added hygienic qualities for beaded garments. See the HeartStrings Fiber Arts knitting pattern #S33 "Glitz and Beads Socks" here: with video tutorial here:

Spyro Gyro earrings by Brenda Franklin
  • Silk Bella: "Wow, this is like tatting thread," notes Vashti, ".5mm hook seems just right. I guess equiv. to #40 or #50 crochet thread."
  • Silk Serica creates soft but strong stitches. "Silk Serica is fabulous with the beads," notes Gwen, "size 8 or 10 or larger [bead] is recommended because it [Serica] is thicker."
  • Silk Serica or Silk Bella offer a smooth thread for handling delicate beads like pearls.
  • Silk is a natural animal fiber, so silk thread complements creations with natural stones.

  • pearls
  • natural stones
  • semi-precious stones
  • glass: dichroic, Venetian, Czech, Delica, seed beads
  • crystal beads, Swarovski and other
  • sterling silver, gold, gold-filled, metal beads
  • bugle beads

Where to get more information or inspiration

  • Betsy Hershberg, Betsy Beads, XRX Books
  • "Kreinik threads could be used in place of any others these authors recommend," notes Gwen Blakely Kinsler: Bethany Barry's book, "Bead Crochet" Interweave 2004, Susan Lutz Kenyon, "Beaded Beauties to Crochet" by Leisure Arts, 2004, "Crochet with Beads" by Hazle Shake , Design Originals,2 005, Lily Chin, "Knit and Crochet with Beads"
  • Brenda Franklin, "Beaded Knits Jewelry and Accessories" volumes 1, 2 and 3.
  • Beading on Fabric by Larkin Jean Van Horn from Interweave Press

WEB SITES, BLOGS, and DESIGNS: (look for the Bead Soup kits)


Not your grandma's needle case

Want something distinctive? Make it yourself! Customize it with your own colors and put your unique spin on it.

That is the mantra of DIYers everywhere. Crafters and needleworkers have been expressing themselves through thread colors, stitches, patterns, and finishing ideas for, well, forever. So when we saw this unique twist on a needle case by designer Brenda Franklin, we asked if we could share it with others to inspire them (and maybe show off the cool use of one of our threads). She said yes, so we are "pinning" this on our blog-board as One Creative Concept.

Here's the story about the needle case from Brenda:

"It is a test tube, with the warp glued onto it and the threads, in this case a variegated silk and [Kreinik] ombre twined around the case. I did a variety of patterns with the weaving, which you can see detailed in the close up jpg. It probably took 4 to 6 hours to do…I did a beaded edge at the top of the weaving as I finished off the warp threads and did a peyote stitch to bead the cap with beads that reflected the colours of the threads used."

Super creative, Brenda, and quite gorgeous! By the way, Brenda is a Canadian cross stitch designer who also creates bead knitting jewelry and patterns. Check out her web site here:

Have you created something unique lately with Kreinik threads? We would love to see it! Email us at or post to our Facebook page:


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News direct from thread maker Kreinik Mfg. Co., Inc., located in Parkersburg, West Virginia. Visit our factory outlet store when you are in the area; call for hours 1-800-537-2166.

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