Sewing Thread Consumption Formula with Example

Sewing Thread Consumption:
Sewing thread is required for seam sewing /assembling, overlocking, various types of stitching, buttonholing, label attachment, etc. Besides, it is important to know the amount of thread consumed in a sewn product. We often need to figure out thread consumption of various items like shirts, Shorts, Tank tops and Pants, etc. Thread consumption means how much thread we need to stitch a product. Sewing thread consumption formula with example are discussed below:

Thread consumption can be determined in several ways. To calculate the amount of thread in a seam, you can:

  1. Measure the actual amount of thread consumed in a specific length of the seam.
  2. Calculate the thread consumption by using mathematical stitch formulas based on the thickness of the seam and the number of stitches per inch.
  3. Calculate the thread consumption using A&E’s ANECALC spreadsheets.
Sewing Thread Consumption Formula
ANECALC spreadsheets (Click on image for large size)

Sewing Thread Consumption Formula with Example


Stitch and seam: 401 SSa-1
Stitches per inch: 8
The thickness of the seam: .075 inches (measured with a micrometer)
Length of the seam: 42 inches or 1.17 yds.

Union Special 401 Chainstitch Chart
Fig: Union Special 401 Chainstitch Chart

Union Special 401 Chainstitch Chart:
Consumption based on the mathematical equation – C = 4 + 2ts

C = 4 + 2(.075 X 8) = 5.20

t = thickness of the seam
s = stitches per inch

Here, 1.17 yds X 5.20 = 6.08 yds / seam.
=> 6.08 yds/seam X 1.15 = 7.00 yds per seam including a 15% waste factor.

*** A shirt having 104 inches 4 Threads Overlock stitches, 52 inches Flatlock stitches, 20 inches 1 Needle Chain stitches, 15 inches Single Needle Plain Machine stitches, GSM is normal, find out its thread consumption in meters?

Answer: {(104 x 19) + (52 x 32) + (20 x 5) + (15 x 2.75) + 10%} / 39.37 = 106.71 Meters. (39.37 inches = 1 Meter)

*** Suppose, we want to buy thread cones with 2000 meters thread, now figure out how many cones do we need to stitch 3000 pcs of garments, per garment’s thread consumption 106.71 meters?

Answer: 106.71 x 3000 / 2000 = 160 cones.

Author of this Article:
Noor Ahmed Raaz
B.Sc. in Apparel Manufacturing 
Asst. Merchandiser at A.M.C.S Textile Ltd 
Email: [email protected]

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