Often when you pick up a Lace book or a Lace pattern, it gives you a thread that you cannot find. Frequently the reason is that the thread manufacturers have discontinued that particular thread.
So I thought I would list some threads and their possible alternatives. We cannot guarantee an exact match but the ones given below are the nearest that are now available.
The first thread many people have problems with is:
DMC’s Retors D’Alsace and Brillante D’Alsace in No 30 and No 50.
DMC discontinued this thread some years ago, and then brought it back with a changed name, Broder Machine, only to then drop the No 30, and to change again the name of the No 50 to Machine Embroidery.
(Fig 1.) So for No 50 Retors D’Alsace and Brillante D’Alsace, use DMC No 50 Machine Embroidery 500mtr reel. Madeira Cotona No 50 1000 metre reel or Gutermann’s No 50 100% cotton on 800 metre reel. All are very similar and will work the same pattern.
(Fig 2.) For the No 30 Count, there is nothing available from DMC but there are 3 alternatives from different manufacturers Gutermann’s Sulky No 30, Egyptian Cotton No 30 or Madeira Cotton No 30 All very effective with Gutermann’s and Madeira being available in a wide range of colours.
(Fig 3.) Filato di Cantu du Tombola was imported from Italy by Coats in two thicknesses, No 30 and No 40, but it is no longer available. The best alternative for this thread is Presencia’s Finca cotton in No 30 and No 40.
(Fig 4.) Madeira Tanne in any thickness is no longer available, but Madeira have now produced their Cotona in No 80 and No 50 count in larger reels to take its place. The No 30 is on the smaller reels and in a good range of colours. (The Cotona according to Madeira has always been the same thread as Tanne, but sold on smaller reels.)
(Fig 5.) Campbell’s Linen which used to be a favourite linen thread, is no longer available to the retail market, to replace it, use Bockens Linen, but you will have to check for size comparison as the two makes do vary slightly.
We hope that this will help you to find a suitable thread for your next lace project. There are 2 Thread Guide, Makit’s Thread Guide at £4.50. And Brenda Paternoster ‘Threads for Lace Edition 6’ which will be available in the next few months.