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Tips & Techniques > Securing Serger Thread Tails

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Posted by: Renren

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Posted on: 3/28/10 4:31 AM
Review Rating: Helpful by 2 people   Very Helpful by 10 people   
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Serger tail threads should be secured because they can unravel otherwise.

For those tails which do not get trapped in seams or elsewhere and which remain "free," they must be secured. One way is to thread them back through the line of serged stitching.

I discovered these bodkins at a local quilting store. By threading the tails through the bodkin's eye, it is then easy to pass the bodkin though the line of serged stitching.

The bodkins are easier to use than regular sewing or darning needles for two reasons: 1) the "eyes" are quite large making it easier to thread and 2) the ends of the bodkins are not as pointed as a needle. Their blunted and rounded ends pass easily through the channel created by the line of serged stitching.

The tails are then safely and permanently encased in the serging and thus unable to unravel.

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Haydee said...
I just love this idea. Thank you so much.
3/10/11 10:49 PM
Orsi said...
I have been using this great little tool called knit picker from cleaners supply company. No hole to thread though and the ends can easily be pulled in to be hidden. Here is the link with picture
3/29/10 11:02 PM
vasallese said...
Thanks for the review. Anything to make sewing easier and more durable so that you feel that you have not spent all that time and effort for nothing.
3/29/10 3:45 PM
beejayem said...
The large-eye blunt needles, also called tapestry, darning, or finishing needles, that are good for weaving in ends and sewing up seams on knitted & crocheted projects are also very useful for the purpose. The may be shorter than bodkins (am not sure since I never used a bodkin).
3/29/10 12:33 PM
kws said...
The bodkins sound easy
3/29/10 8:26 AM
Renren said...
Azdi, I do not knot it. I have a serger tail thread about 2-4 inches long which is hanging loose after completing the seam and I thread that tail through the thread "channel" for about 1-1.5 inches and then I exit the channel with the bodkin and trim off the excess thread. So far, even through multiple washings, my thread tails have stayed in the thread channels of the serged stitching. I did use a darning needle before that (which really is a thicker, large eyed needle) and it was okay but sometimes the pointy end would catch on fabric or thread. If you are adept with that, you might not even need these bodkins; but for me the bodkins are easier to use.
3/29/10 1:17 AM
azdi said...
I've been doing this with a regular large eyed needle, but as I'm a brand new serger owner, I've no idea how they've held up through washings, etc. Especially for an active 2 year old DGD ;0 My question is... when you thread this back through the seam, do you also knot it? or is threading it sufficient?
3/29/10 1:10 AM
Renren said...
Linda Mae, I found the bodkins at a local quilting store. I had never seen them before although I had heard the term "bodkin" but I wasn't clear what it meant. At the time, I was havig difficulty getting thread tails into serged channels, and I immediately thought these might do the trick (they do!). The card they came on and pictured above says "John James Bodkin Set" and although it indicates it is made in England, I bought it in Texas. I just did an online search at by typing in "John James bodkin set" and there are many vendors with this or similar items. Hope that helps!
3/28/10 2:28 PM
Linda Mae said...
Where did you find this item? I've not seen them on Hancock's or JoAnn's notions wall. Is it available online?
3/28/10 2:24 PM
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