Sewing Paper With A Machine

by Heather Dreith
(Waterville, Kansas, USA)

I recently purchased a sewing machine because I'd love to sew on and in my journals. I sewed two wallpaper samples together for an outside and inside cover. It was so much fun! I was in a craft store the other day looking for thread and I asked another shopper if there was more thread somewhere. (It didn't seem like a very big display of thread to me!) She could tell I wasn't familiar with the sewing department and told me to sew paper I would need a larger needle and heavy duty thread. It seems to me like I'd want a smaller needle so my holes wouldn't be so big and tear the paper and that thread should be lighter weight to also avoid tearing the paper. Could experienced paper sewers out there set me straight and give me helpful tips for sewing on paper?

Comments for Sewing Paper With A Machine

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Jul 14, 2017
What I use
by: Stef

Hi Heather,
With thicker thread, there's less danger of the thread cutting the paper when one isn't handling the result too lovingly, that's why some people like to use it. And when using thicker thread, a stronger needle is recommended.
I love using thread that's mostly called decorative, buttonhole or embroidery thread. My favourite is SILK-FINISH COTTON MULTI 50 by Mettler - the multi-color effect adds to the shabby look.
Oh, and I totally agree with Debbie-Anne: Removing paper dust regularly is essential.
Also, if you are using your machine to sew fabric, too, you should keep needles you have used for paper sewing apart from those for fabric - the paper makes the needles go blunt and they may ruin fabric.
Have fun!

Jul 13, 2017
Journal sewing
by: Anonymous

I had good luck using a jeans needle sewing 20 sheets of Tomoe River paper, plus a cardstock cover, down the center to make a small journal. Use the longest stitch length and do not reverse the machine at the beginning and end. Instead, leave long thread tails and tie them together. If you go back through the holes, you might tear the paper.

i used quilting thread.

Jul 07, 2017
Sewing Supplies
by: Debbie-Anne

Hi Heather, others may have different answers but I use a needle for medium weight fabric and whatever regular cotton/poly thread I already have on hand for mending, etc. I've never had any issues sewing paper with that, but I don't sew very thick layers either. It's usually a single layer of paper or a few, not really heavy cardstock. And I make my stitches longer because if they're too short they'll perforate/tear your paper. You can buy the various needle sizes in one pack and some inexpensive cotton/poly thread and test your stitching. One thing to remember is to occasionally brush the inner workings of the machine to remove paper dust.

Have fun!

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