I am not a traditional quilter by any means. My stitches don't look the same on the back as on the front and although I admire the tiny stitches that signifies quality hand quilting, it is not an art that I have mastered. I am more of a meandering hand stitcher, inspired by japanese stitching techniques such as sashiko and boro. I make lines and paths to blend the surface of my work.
I love to use substantial thread to give each mark more weight and meaning. My absolute favorite is thread no 5, from Beautiful Silks in Australia. This is a 4-ply, 70% silk and 30% cotton thread which was introduced to me by India Flint, during a class I took with her a few summers ago. The no. 5 thread is strong and can be separated into finer strands for more delicate work. It has a beautiful off-white color, and it dyes wonderfully. This thread is now sold in the US by Christine Mauersberger, through her online store Hank & Spool. I buy it in large hanks, either winding it up in a ball or cutting it in half for the perfect stitching length.
There are other threads I like to use, such as KNK Japanese silk thread, it has a wonderful sheen and comes in a wide range of color, although none of them created with natural dyes. I also like the black rayon yarn from Habu textiles that I got from a local yarn store a few years back. I love to use vintage threads and am always on the lookout for them when I travel, especially in Europe. When working with vintage threads it is important to check that it is strong and not deteriorated, to make sure your stitches will hold up over time.