ZJ Humbach

Prevent Thread Breaks and Tangles

ZJ Humbach
Sign in
Duration:   5  mins

Thread breaks and tangles can be a frustrating aspect of hand sewing. ZJ Humbach shares several of her favorite products that both condition thread and help prevent tangles and breakage.


Beeswax is one of ZJ’s favorite products to use when hand sewing. You can find it in many craft or sewing stores in the hand sewing or notions section. Coating thread with beeswax helps keep the sewing thread straight while stitching as well as eliminates many thread tangles, twists and knots. By coating the thread it also allows it to easily glide through the fabric being stitched. ZJ demonstrates how to use the beeswax by cutting a length of thread and then running it through the wax. The thread will leave a mark in the beeswax, and after repeated use, will need to be turned so a new section of the wax can start to be used.

Thread Heaven

Thread Heaven is a thread conditioner that can also be used to help eliminate tangled thread and thread breaks. It also helps to extend the life of the thread and protects against UV rays, mold and mildew. ZJ demonstrates how to use the Thread Heaven, which is similar to using the beeswax, in that you simply cut a length of thread and run it through the product. ZJ also show a quick alternative to both the Thread Heaven and Beeswax that can be used to help the thread glide through the fabric.

Machine Sewing

While tangled thread happens most commonly while hand sewing, thread breaks can also occur during machine sewing. ZJ shows a product she likes to used when machine sewing, especially when long arm quilting, that conditions the entire spool of thread. She also shares a product that can help when both machine and hand sewing that is applied directly to the fabric rather than the thread.

Share tips, start a discussion or ask one of our experts or other students a question.

Make a comment:
characters remaining

2 Responses to “Prevent Thread Breaks and Tangles”

  1. Gina

    If you are putting these on a spool of thread, do they not gum up the machine as it is going through?

  2. Norma

    When using bee's wax to condition your thread, it helps to iron it in so that it melts into the thread. Otherwise, the bee's wax will come off as the thread goes through the fabric multiple times.

Get exclusive premium content! Sign up for a membership now!