Rayon or Polyester, Which Thread is Best?

Rayon embroidery thread is one of the most popular and readily-available threads on the market but what about polyester? Both are beautiful. Can you tell which is which? Is one better than the other? It depends.

Rayon thread (left) and polyester (right) are both wonderful embroidery threads. Both have a beautiful sheen and stitch without any special considerations. Rayon is the original embroidery thread of choice. Now, poly is just as popular. 

A benefit of polyester thread is that it resists fading, bleaching and ironing which makes it a workhorse for clothing and textile embroidery that will be laundered frequently. It is also very strong which makes it great for quilting and embroidery on items that will receive lots of loving wear.

Traditionally, rayons have rich, more pastel colors while polyesters tend to be brighter, even neon.

It is so difficult to show in photography but, in the case of these two samples above, polyester was a better choice as it is highly reflective. It adds dimension to the detailed, textural stitching by catching even the most minute glints of light. The extra pop makes all of the difference.

The best test is to try stitching the same design with both types of thread and see which is more appealing to you!

Debbie SewBlest

Comments (1) -

This is a great Blog, Thank you, Debbie.  I normally discourage using them together because they do have a difference in their stretchability. Rayon does not stretch as much as polyester does and when washing that may be an issue (or maybe not. . . )

May you be blessed in ways you have not yet imagined.  


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