Fil Au Chinois patchwork thread is a polyester core wrapped with cotton, rather than a mix of these two materials. This waxed thread was specially developped with patchwork in mind. If patchwork has today become a veritable art form with codes and rules, it must not be forgotten that it was originally a home economics reflex - the recuperation of all sorts of fabrics to make into warm bedspreads or insulating wall panels. The technique is as old as time, and was extremely popular in Victorian Britain. The great waves of emigration took this tradition to the United States, where it was particularly adapted to a less industrialised country where all products were scarce and precious. After the Second World War, patchwork crossed the water again to become very fashionable in Europe.
Successive waves of emigration took patchwork to the United States, where it developped in a distinctive style. The lack of materials led to the inventive construction of blocks, which could be easily transported on long journeys. Each community added their own symbolism, colours and techniques. It is one of the reasons that patchwork today is such a rich and interesting universe to discover.
Our Fil Au Chinois special thread for patchwork is a waxed thread which has been passed through a bath containing a mixture of starch, fish glue and beeswax. This makes the thread smooth and resistant, whilst also giving it a relative stiffness. It is fine on most sewing machines, but may not be suitable for certain cheaper, less powerful models. We recommend testing with a spool before investing in cones.