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Sewing leather requires a different approach than sewing other fabrics due to its thickness, durability, and unique properties. When working with leather, choosing the right thread is crucial to ensure strong, secure seams that withstand the test of time. Thick thread specifically designed for sewing leather offers strength, durability, and aesthetic appeal, but navigating the options can be daunting. In this guide, we’ll explore the factors to consider when selecting thick thread for sewing leather and highlight some popular choices in the market.

Four factors to consider

  • Thickness:The thickness of the thread is a critical factor in leather sewing, as it directly affects the strength and appearance of the seams. Thick thread adds visual impact and enhances the durability of the finished product. When selecting thread thickness, consider the weight and thickness of the leather, as well as the desired aesthetic effect.
  • Material:Thick threads for leather sewing are typically made from materials such as nylon, polyester, cotton, or specialty threads like waxed or braided threads. Each material has its advantages and is suitable for different applications. Nylon and polyester sewing threads offer strength and durability, while cotton threads provide a softer, more traditional look. Specialty threads like waxed or braided threads offer enhanced resistance to abrasion and moisture.
  • Color:Choosing the right thread color is essential for achieving a seamless and professional finish. Consider the color of the leather and the overall design aesthetic when selecting thread color. Matching the thread color to the leather creates a cohesive look, while contrasting thread can add visual interest and highlight stitching details.
  • Needle Compatibility:Thick thread requires compatible needles to ensure smooth sewing and prevent thread breakage. Use needles specifically designed for sewing leather or heavy-duty fabrics, with larger eye sizes to accommodate thick thread. Be sure to match the needle size to the thread thickness for optimal stitching results.

Popular Thick Thread Options

  • Nylon Thread:Nylon thread is a popular choice for sewing leather due to its strength, durability, and resistance to abrasion. It offers excellent tensile strength and is available in a wide range of colors to suit different leather projects. Nylon thread is also resistant to UV rays and moisture, making it ideal for outdoor and rugged applications.
  • Polyester Thread:Polyester thread is another robust option for sewing leather, offering similar strength and durability to nylon thread. It provides excellent color fastness and resistance to fading, making it suitable for long-lasting, high-visibility stitching. Polyester thread is also resistant to mildew and chemicals, making it suitable for a wide range of leather applications.
  • Waxed Thread:Waxed thread is specially treated with wax to enhance its strength, durability, and resistance to abrasion. The wax coating adds a layer of protection to the thread, making it ideal for stitching leather and other heavy-duty materials. Waxed thread is available in various thicknesses and colors, allowing for customization and creative stitching effects.
Thread TypeMaterialStrengthDurabilityColor OptionsSpecial Features
Nylon ThreadNylonHighHighWide rangeUV and moisture resistant
Polyester ThreadPolyesterHighHighExcellent color fastnessResistant to mildew and chemicals
Waxed ThreadCotton or PolyesterHighHighVariedWaxed coating for added strength and abrasion resistance

Application Tips

  • Hand Sewing:When hand sewing leather with thick thread, use a stitching awl or piercing tool to create evenly spaced stitch holes. Pull the thread taut to ensure tight, secure stitches, and use a saddle stitch for added strength and durability.
  • Machine Sewing:For machine sewing leather with thick thread, use a heavy-duty sewing machine with a walking foot or roller foot to prevent slippage and ensure smooth stitching. Adjust the tension settings to accommodate the thicker thread and test the stitching on scrap leather before starting your project.


In conclusion, selecting the right thick thread for sewing leather is essential for achieving strong, durable seams and professional-looking results. Consider factors such as thread thickness, material, color, and needle compatibility when choosing thread for your leather projects. Nylon, polyester, and waxed threads are popular options, each offering unique strengths and characteristics. By understanding the properties of different thread types and following best practices for sewing leather, you can create beautifully crafted leather goods that stand the test of time.