With Büchertiger Supplies I founded the shop which I would have wished to find when I started out binding books. Especially coloured linen thread was very hard for me to find in the beginning, and it took me a long time to search for suppliers. I then found out that I had to buy largely in bulk – and thus a business was born. I first sold excess and soon bought to sell.
I put a strong emphasis on customer service. I enjoy helping customers to choose the thread that is right for them, and love to hear about their projects.
Beside thread I also stock parchment pieces, ideal for training both caligraphy and small parchment bindings.
Gruschwitz WMZ, NeL 18/3Z
This German linen thread is firmly twisted and then calendered which makes it strong and gives it a faint sheen. It is not waxed. It is advisable to wax it by hand (actually it can be machine waxed if you have such a waxing machine) before using it to sew leather.
If you are going to use it for bookbinding you probably will want to wax it, too. With some experience, it can be used non-waxed for smaller volumes which for open spine bindings has the advantage of no wax on the outside. This is an advantage since wax attracts dirt and dust like a magnet.
There are 20 different colours available from Gruschwitz. Most have a beautiful, natural greyish-ness to it, characteristic of only mildly bleached threads.
Somac Thread 4/18 and 3/18
This linen thread, produced in England, is the newest addition to my stock. It is available in 4-ply and 3-ply, is non-waxed and of very high quality. It has not been calandered like the Gruschwitz thread which gives it a matte finish and makes it softer than other bookbinding threads in my stock.
It should be waxed before sewing. If you are going to use it to bind books you probably want to wax it, too, because the wax makes the thread on the one hand slightly sticky, which makes it easier to makes knots and looks, at the same time it reduces fraying and accidental loops. However, with a bit of practise it can be used as it is, which has some advantages, especially when you are sewing exposed bindings where the wax on the thread might otherwise attract dust and dirt.
There are 12 colours available of the 4-ply thread, and unfortunately only 9 of those also for the 3-ply.
Crawford’s Waxed Irish Linen Thread
Crawford’s waxed Irish linen thread is used like all linen threads for a variety of traditional crafts, including leather sewing, bookbinding, and all sorts of crafts that include knotting (like macrame and basket weaving).
It is by many considered the best thread for Coptic bindings. The 4-ply is most often used, but it is available also in different thicknesses.
I have the largest selection of colour in the 4-ply range, but also a small selection of 3-ply, 7-ply, and 12-ply threads. The latter is interesting to use as sewing support rather than for sewing thread. Before using it, it is advisable to run it between your fingers several times to get rid of excess wax and to give a smoother finish and thread.
The wide range of different colours is the main advantage of this thread. With broad selection of bright colours to choose from, it is rare not to find a match. Some of the colours in my shop can’t even be found in other stores, like coffee and dark moss or cherry.
Goldschild Line Thread, NeL 18/3
Goldschild thread is not as tightly twisted as the other linen threads in my range, and therefore feels softer. It cannot be broken by hand but has to be considered weaker, especially since the weaker twist makes it more vulnerable to abrasion damage.
When waxed before usage, it holds up reasonably well for sewing books. However, due to its weaker structure, I can only recommend it for light (one or two section) bindings, and for stab bindings like an Asian binding. It would be suitable for sewing headbands, though, and could be a really nice touch on a rustic book for which silk thread doesn’t quite seem to match the style.
Goldschild thread is a top choice for as a crochet or embroidery thread. The thread is not suitable for sewing leather.
Fil Au Chinois, Lin Cable
Ah, lin cable, the most lush among the linen threads. This thread has been cabled, which means it has been twisted twice. This makes the thread especially even and round and enhances abrasion resistance and strength in general. When viewed from very close it looks more like very fine rope rather than thread (that’s the look of the cabling).
It is thinly waxed before cabling which gives the thread its luxurious sheen whithout making it the slightest bit sticky.
Without a doubt this is the best thread you will find for creating leather products. Like other linen thread it can be used where-ever a strong thread is needed. For example for creating puppets on a string, just to name one. And of course it can be used for bookbinding. As it is so especially strong, it is not suitable for conservation work.
The thread is produced in 5 different thicknesses, I currently stock 44 colours in their two thickest calipers (called 332 and 432), and a small variety in the thinner 632. I am planning to expand the range of available colours and thicknesses slowly over the next time.
Professional Bookbinding Thread
It is of course 100% twisted linen thread, made from the longer line part of the flax fibre. This thread is suitable for conservation work, and meets the highest requirements. The Fil Au Chinois, Lin Retors thread is available in the thicknesses 12, 20, 25, 30, and 40. The thread is thicker if the number is lower.
This thread should be hand waxed before usage.
Fil Au Chinois, Fil de Lin
This French linen thread is a pleasant simple kitchen thread. It is sold in 30m balls in only this one white colour. It is food safe, and can be used to tie up meat, cabbage rolls, or whatever you need to tie and then cook. Apart from kitchen use it is good for all kinds of uses, from building kits to wrapping gifts. It is probably the strong thread your mother or grandmother had in that drawer in the kitchen.
It is produced in three different thicknesses which I all stock.
Varigated Linen Thread Nm 60/3, Stef Francis
Nm 60/3 converts to NeL 100/3, so it is fairly thin.
Stef Francis is a family owned small business that hand dyes all their threads in South England.
This thread is sold on skeins which hold 57m of thread.
Fine Silk Thread, Stef Francis
Stef Francis is a family run small business in South England where the thread is hand-dyed. There are lots of wonderful colours available, some just have a slight variation that makes the colour pop and appear more organic, others come in wild varigations.
This thread is sold on skeins which hold 28m.
Silk Perle 5, Stef Francis
I also used it for endbands for slightly more rustic volumes. The beautiful, lustrous quality of silk still makes it look gorgeous, and the thickness makes for quick stitching.
Of course it can also be used for general embroidery and stitching.
Like all Stef Francis threads these are hand-dyed in a range of beautiful colours from faded tones to popping colours.
Length per skein : 12 m
Filament Silk Thread, Stef Francis
I used it for endbands. It is not easy to use, as it consists of a multitude of fine fibres rather loosely twisted, and which thus like to hold on to the spine lining, or even just to dry flecks on my hands.
But it’s well worth the trouble using it. I have never seen a thread more beautiful than this.
Sold on skeins, each holds 36m of thread.
Stranded Silk, Stef Francis
The number of strands in the thread is 12, and the thread in one skein has a length of 6m.
Being a bookbinding I myself am always looking for how to use thread for books, and I found that this is a really beautiful thread to use for Asian stab bindings.
Braided Silk, Stef Francis
This braided silk is an incredibly strong silk braid of medium weight. It is useful in embroidery as it is very round and has a central core.
It is useful in general craft work where the high strength can be asset; for example for jewelry making, for making a necklace, etc.For bookbinding I see it mostly as a thread for stab bindings and decorative elements like tassles on stab bindings.
Stef Francis is a family owned small business, and all thread is hand dyed in South England in an extensive range of varigated colours.
Simple goodness for a medieval look.
Currently only sold in pieces, no whole spool available.
Everlasto Jute Twine
This Everlasto Jute twine is relatively coarse and available in 5 different colours. One spool has approximately 50m. It is made of 100% jute which is a natural fibre which makes the thread biodegradable. It can be used for all kinds of knotting and binding in the garden.
I also use it for book cords, and for crocheting things like containers and coasters.
Fil Au Chinois, Lin Retors
Its intended use is for sewing anything that needs a strong seam, from sewing on buttons to sewing heavier materials like jeans or leather clothing. This thread is not suitable for use in a sewing machine.
It comes in a wide variety of colours of which I currently stock fourteen.