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What Is the Strongest Stitch on the Sewing Machine?

Most of the sewing machines that you encounter have about 10 to 30 different kinds of stitch types.

However, sometimes, you might want to use a stitch type that is extremely durable because you want the garment to last for as long as it can. This can be a bit confusing and daunting, as well.

So what is the strongest stitch on a sewing machine? A straight stitch is the strongest stitch amongst all the other stitches on a sewing machine. Combined with a polyester or a nylon thread, a straight stitch is tough to tear and gives us a very durable result. It is also long-lasting.

Why Is Straight Stitch the Strongest?

The straight stitch is the strongest and the most durable one because of the way thread layers. Unlike most other stitches, straight stitches form a stringent series of threads and are tightly knitted to be almost unbreakable. Also, with this type of stitch, the thread layers on top of one another. This is more than enough to keep the stitch firm and secure on the fabric.

Regardless of how hard it is pulled, straight stitches won’t come out easily—they need to be cut out or torn using a cutter. Taking these stitches off is equivalent to almost tearing off the fabric on which the stitches are put.

The initial stitch that any person learns on a sewing machine is straight. One of the most widely and commonly used stitches on the sewing machine is the straight stitch.

To ensure that the fabric is secured doubly, stitch twice using the straight stitch. Backstitch is also a part of the straight stitch. In fact, straight stitch actually originated from the backstitch.

To secure two fabric pieces together to form a garment, a straight stitch is the most commonly used type of stitch.

Is Zig-Zag Stitch Stronger?

No, a zig-zag stitch is not stronger when compared to a straight stitch. A straight stitch is the most durable and strongest stitch you can make, whether sewing by hand or sewing with a sewing machine. It is also tough to tear.

A straight stitch won’t come off easily if sewn properly. Moreover, if you sew a straight stitch with durable threads like polyester or nylon, the straight stitch can last for a long while.

A straight stitch is generally the strongest one, though, in different scenarios, the answer might be different.

What Is the Best Stitch Length?

2.5 to 3.0 is the best stitch length. This is basically 8 to 12 stitches per inch of the fabric. If you are a newbie to sewing, it is recommended that you use the given stitch length for all the projects that you take on. However, as you gain more experience, you can shake things up and develop your own style and choose your own length that you are comfortable with.

With experience, you will realize that each project will require a different stitch length, and you will be able to adjust your stitch length according to the project you are doing.

However, coming to this stage will take time and effort.

Is the Hand-Made Stitch Strong Enough?

The strongest stitch that we can make is the hand-made stitch. This being that one can use as thick a thread for hand- sewing that one wants.

Being derived from backstitch, a straight stitch is a stitch that is easy to make, extremely popular, and one that can be sewn by hand.

Backstitch is a stitch that makes you go over the single area of the fabric twice. The needle that is being used is stuck through the fabric, and then, it makes a loop again, as the name of the stitch indicates. The loop goes back, moves two steps ahead, and the process continues.

By using a needle and a thread to hand- sew fabric, you are ensuring that you can choose to use a nylon thread that is 3-ply and bonded if you want to. This thread is a perfect choice if you wish to do heavy-duty sewing.

Do you wish to add some extra strength to your stitch? Well, then, you can do so by increasing stitch length. This will increase the thread you are using and ensure that you will have a solid stitch.

Examples of when you should be using backstitch to hand- sew along with strong thread are—

  • Tents
  • Outdoor gear
  • Parachutes
  • Kites built especially for stormy weather
  • Seatbelts and so on

All the situations in which you want to ensure that the stitch and the thread will not break.

Of course, you can find sewing machines that are up for the usage of thick threads.

However, the average sewing machines that you have in your house will not perform in this case. You will need industrial sewing machines for this task.

Another point to note is that the bobbin thread and the top thread should have a similar strength.

As we want the stitches to be as strong as possible, we need to ensure that we use the strongest possible thread on both the bobbin and the top.

If your bobbin thread and the top thread are not of the same strength, your stitch is as strong as the stitch chain’s weakest thread.

Can You Sew a Strong Stitch with Stretchy Fabric?

Sewing a strong stitch with a stretchy fabric is a little tricky. For fabrics with elastane, spandex, or lycra, we cannot use a straight stitch to sew them as stretchy fabrics. The reason being that the thread gets torn when the fabric is stretched when you sew a straight stitch along with a stretchy fabric.

The fabric will either lose its stretching ability completely because the straight stitch won’t let the fabric stretch.

On the other hand, a zig-zag stitch does not let the thread get torn while it is sewn on the stretchy fabric, and that fabric is stretched.

The fabric can move a bit with every stitch with the zig-zag stitch’s usage, which is why zig-zag stitch is recommended for stretchy fabrics.

However, a standard zig-zag stitch is not exactly durable like the straight stitch, and so, we are going to consider an alternative—tricot stitch or the triple zig-zag stitch.

This stitch is stronger and much stretchier than the regular zig-zag stitch, and one of the places where you might have seen it is in men’s boxer briefs.

What Is the Strongest Thread for Sewing?

Upholstery Nylon is the strongest thread for sewing. The special resin coating that this upholstery thread has adds to its strength. This thread is fabricated in the lab rather than present naturally in nature.

The main reason why Nylon is so strong is found in its chemistry. The super-strong bonds between the atoms on the molecular level, the super-high tensile strength, the tightly knit, and the big molecules add to the thread’s strength that will not break easily.

Nylon is known as a polymer because it is a type of plastic. You wouldn’t be able to find Nylon in nature. Heating organic chemicals form it like petroleum or coal at an extremely high temperature. The result is just terrific.

The most commonly used type of nylon thread is known as Nylon 66 or nylon 6-6, as this is made of molecules having 6 carbon atoms.

What Nylon Thread Is Used for?

Upholstery work is the most common use of Nylon thread. For using the nylon thread outdoors, you will have to ensure that the nylon thread is UV-protected. The colors won’t fade with time as they get exposed to the sun.

Using the nylon thread indoors, you can easily use nylon thread that is not UV-protected as there are many cheap alternatives available.

Apart from the upholstery work, you can also use nylon thread for other projects, as we listed in this article earlier (seatbelts, parachutes, outdoor gear, tents, etc.).

What are some other types of strong thread?

Apart from Nylon, cotton is one of the materials with which some other strong thread types can be made.

When you purchase cotton thread, ensure that you consider the tensile strength listed on the packaging of the cotton thread you are purchasing.

Some of the other elements that often affect a cotton thread’s strength are—

  • The thickness of the thread
  • The type of fiber
  • Process of the making of the thread
  • Quality of cotton

You are good to go with a standard cotton thread in solid good quality lest you are planning to do upholstery work or outdoor sewing projects like kites, tents, etc.

It would help if you did fine with cotton as long as you choose a thin thread.

Is Polyester or Cotton Thread Stronger?

Cotton thread is stronger and a lot softer than polyester and cotton threads. This ensures the visibility of seams in your sewing projects.

Also, as there is no stretch present in cotton fabrics, the stitches remain as they are, and you do not have to ever worry about the fabric losing its shape. Polyester thread, on the other hand, has a little stretch.

Final Thoughts

With the sewing machine being able to sew different kinds of stitches, deciding to sew a stitch can be particularly hard.

However, while choosing a stitch type, having the stitch’s strength in mind is essential as it plays a vital role in how long your garment lasts after it has been sewn.

Furthermore, as we discussed that the straight stitch is the strongest stitch there is. You might want to choose to sew your garments using this stitch as they will last longer.

As this stitch isn’t applicable for stretchy fabrics, the alternative to consider is the tricot stitch or the triple zig-zag stitch. Using this stitch, you can easily stitch stretchy fabrics and then wear them with comfort and ease.

Another thing discussed in this article is the type of thread used to ensure that the stitch you use lasts longer. The thread we recommended you use is the nylon thread. It has its application both indoors and outdoors.

An alternative to nylon thread is cotton thread. It can be used to do regular sewing. However, it can’t be used for outdoor or upholstery work.

Now that you are aware of the various things that are important to know if you are pondering over the strongest stitch on the sewing machine, it is time for you to sew the solid straight stitch on the regular fabric of the tricot stitch on the stretchy fabric yourself.

Related Questions:

#1. Which Is the Strongest Seam?

A flat felled seam is the strongest seam. These are seams in which, at first, a plain seam is sewn using the fabric’s wrong and right sides together. Lock the edges to tuck into each other and then sew again with another plain seam.

This plain seam must be sewn on the other side of the width of the seam.

This method is extremely beneficial for protecting and hiding the raw edges, and it leaves them looking tidy and clean.

It is a strong seam, and it must be used on heavier fabrics that require extra security for holding them together.

An example of this could be jeans or pants with side seams. Areas with high- traffic and also stress points on the garments require extra strength.

Therefore, keep flat-felled seams in your mind so that they would help strengthen the garment!