Gutermann Maraflex Review – Tips For Getting The Best Results

Gutermann Maraflex Thread | More Sewing
Gutermann Maraflex thread is supplied as 150m on a yellow reel

What is Gutermann Maraflex?

Gutermann Maraflex thread is a flexible polyester thread, perfect for sewing with stretch and knitted jersey fabrics. The thread flexes with the jersey fabric as it moves. It is not anywhere as stretchy as shirring elastic – it feels a lot firmer than that, a lot stronger. 

What is Maraflex For?

Quite simply, Gutermann Maraflex thread is for use with jersey fabrics. It is ideal for use on elastic seams on jersey and knitted fabrics. Seams sewn with Maraflex will stretch far more than a seam sewn with standard sewing thread. 

Why Should I Use Maraflex?

Using Maraflex allows you to sew jersey fabrics using a standard straight stitch on a sewing machine. There is no need to use a zig zag or even a triple stitch. A straight stitch will give you a much finer finish.

How Do I Use Maraflex?

Gutermann recommends that you sew with as little top thread tension as possible and use this thread as both the needle and bobbin thread. Set your stitch to 4 stitch/cm (around stitch length number 3 on a modem sewing machine). You will still need to use a jersey, or stretch, sewing machine needle (depending on the elasticity of the fabric). 

Actually Using Maraflex 

We decided to put Gutermann Maraflex thread to the test. We used a Pfaff Passport 2.0 to test Maraflex thread and 95% cotton/5% elastane fabric to sew with. For the different samples we used either Schmetz standard needle size 80 or a Schmetz stretch needle size 80

We produced 4 samples:

No tension adjustment no stitch adjustment

Stitch looks ok overall but with stitch length set at 2 – fabric is puckering a bit

Top tension set at one no stitch adjustment

Stitch looked ok (set at 2) on top but not forming well underneath.

Top tension set at 1 stitch length set at 3 (the set up recommended by Gutermann)

Really the same above – not a great stitch – holding but not looking that good.

No tension adjustment and stitch length set at 3

This looked the best overall to our eyes – stitch looked good top and bottom and the fabric did not pucker. I suppose the point here is that potentially sewing with Maraflex is even easier. As long as you use the right needle you may not have to adjust your tension at all!

NOTE – If you are going to change your top tension then make a note of the number it is set on before you do so you can reset the tension when you have finished. Tension is a balancing act between that top thread and the bottom thread tensioned in the bobbin case.

I have read that other elastic threads for sewing with jersey can tend to fray and break. I have not experienced either – at least not yet. 

Is Maraflex a Gimmick?

No, we certainly don’t think so. Using Gutermann Maraflex does give a nice finish and try as i might i could not break the stitch

Stretching our cotton jersey sample as far as we can – the stitch did not crack

Maraflex works very well for sewing jersey fabrics on all grades of sewing machine – even on the most basic machines that do not have stretch stitches as standard. 

If you sew jersey or knitted fabrics (or want to) you really should try Gutermann Maraflex – we don’t think you will be disappointed.