What Thread For Sewing Leather: The Best 3

Last Updated on 9 months by Susan Mayrich

If you’re curious about what thread for sewing leather is, it’s nylon. We’ll also talk if you can use other threads when working with leather. 

what thread for sewing leather

And, of course, we’ll include tips on how to sew leather without issues. So speaking of which, consider reading what is the best sewing machine for leather

It’s not enough to get the right thread because the machine will also affect the difficulty of sewing something heavy-duty like leather.


What Is The Best Thread For Sewing Leather?


Nylon thread

The best thread for sewing leather is nylon thread, particularly the upholstery nylon thread. It is strong enough to withstand leather sewing, and it is even relatively affordable for industrial sewing. 

Another type of nylon thread that is perfect for sewing leather is bonded nylon thread. The fibers are bonded or fused together for added durability, and you can use them for machine sewing and hand sewing leather. 


Polyester thread

However, it’s also possible to use other upholstery threads like polyester threads. The polyester thread is a practical alternative for upholstery nylon thread, and it’s perfect for leather projects that will be used outdoors since polyester won’t degrade from mildew and sunlight. 

Other than upholstery polyester thread, waxed polyester thread is also a good choice when sewing leather. The waxed coating keeps it from moving, and you don’t have to worry about it getting worn down from dirt and grime that most leather goods used for heavy-duty use experience. 

Are you interested to know what is the strongest sewing thread? Then, you will find out that the ones we mentioned here are included in that list.  


Can You Sew Leather With Linen Thread?

You can use a linen thread for sewing leather, mainly if you’re sewing by hand. It’s a thread often seen in leather shoes, holsters, saddles, bags, and the likes. 

Even though linen is made of cotton fibers, it’s possible that you can use it for sewing leather. However, expect that linen thread is not the best leather thread in terms of durability.

Instead, linen would be the perfect thread if you’re sewing leather for aesthetic reasons. Compared to synthetic threads, the look and texture of linen thread look fantastic against leather. 


How Do You Sew Leather Thread?

  • Hide the initial knot from the needle and bobbin thread between the leather layers when sewing along the leather seam to ensure that the stitch line looks smooth, continuous, and polished
  • Use the correct size thread for the type of leather you’re using (e.g., lighter weight threads for decorative stitching and heavier weight threads for areas that will be worn quickly)
  • Leather purses and wallets can typically use a size #46 or #69 nylon thread, while leather furniture can use something as thick as size #138 thread
  • Use the compatible needle with the thread size you selected
  • Lengthen the stitch length when sewing with thick leather threads so the spacing looks equal and prevent uneven tension that can cause leather tearing


What Do You Use To Sew Leather Together?

You can use nylon, polyester, or linen thread to sew leather together. However, you have two more factors to consider to know what to use when sewing leather. 


What size of thread for sewing leather

The thread size for leather depends on the leather thickness. Therefore, thicker leather will need to be sewn with a higher size thread to ensure that it can handle the pressure, especially on heavy-duty leather items that will get worn quickly. 

Remember that the sizes are different with every type of thread. But to give you a quick idea, consider the thread’s measurement in millimeters and remember the guide below:

  • Lightweight leather often used in wallets and bags can be sewn with a 46mm to 138mm thread
  • Mediumweight leather often used in suitcases can be sewn with a 138mm to 554mm thread
  • Heavyweight leather often used for boots can be sewn with a 207mm thread or even higher


What color of thread for sewing leather

The color of thread to choose when sewing leather is a matter of personal preference. Some prefer a contrast, especially for highlighting details like the white thread on leather, but some items require something darker for practicality and keep the item from looking dirty. 

A safe choice would be black or brown threads, but the decision always lies on the sewer. Consider your leather project’s general look and style, or try the thread against the material to know how it will look. 


What Size Needles For Hand Sewing Leather?

Using a sewing machine is the easiest and fastest way to sew leather, especially with heavyweight materials that require industrial sewing machines. However, it’s still possible to hand sew leather, whether it’s for repair or small projects. 

The leather needle comes in sizes 2 to 10, and choosing what size to use depends on the type of leather you’re sewing. You should easily identify a leather needle because it is triangular to cut and enter the material that it’s also useful for pleather, suede, and vinyl. 



And that’s it! We just found out what thread for sewing leather to use and discovered nylon is the best choice.

However, you can also use polyester and linen threads as alternatives. Then, remember the correct thread size and color to ensure that you can sew smoothly and easily. 

We hope you learn a lot. Leave us a question if you have any. 

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