Today we complete our series on Stabilizer Savvy. We look at another type of stabilizer which is not torn, washed or cut away… is melted or removed with heat.  As with all the other stabilizers, there are many different brands available so we suggest you do your research and buy what suits your purpose and budget.


Why would I want to use this type of stabilizer?



  1. If I have a garment that should not be washed (perhaps it is dry clean only?) or is a gift that I do not wish to wash before giving, this stabilizer might be an alternative?
  2. Perhaps the item with embroidery is very delicate (silk?) and a tearaway or cutaway would not be appropriate?
  3. The heat setting is an important consideration: check what is the maximum heat that may be used on the particular fabric and ensure the heat away stabilizer operates within this heat setting. You do NOT want to scorch or burn your fabric.
  4. Before Janome brought out our absolutely fabulous ACUFIL quilting where we can hoop up a quilt for the embroidery machine to do the quilting, I used this type of stabilizer. I used to hoop up the melt away, spray it with a little glue and lay my quilt over the top. Why do this? Well, it is very tricky to hoop a thick quilt in a regular hoop. It is awfully fiddly and can damage both the quilt and hoop. So this was a workaround that problem. I would then baste the quilt onto the meltaway which was really not much more substantial than a sheet of saran wrap. After the quilting was done , I would tear the quilt off the hoop or remove the basting stitches. The quilt is then ironed on the back and the stabilizer shrivels up and melts into lots of little pellets that can be brushed off the back of the quilt. Very successful actually.

You would not want to use the same method with tearaway as you would have an dreadful job picking out all the bits of tearaway. Water soluble could be used but it does mean that the quilt has to be washed or immersed in water to remove the stabilizer and you may not wish to do this. I obviously don’t use this method anymore as I have Janome ACUFIL but it is nonetheless a method which can be used to quilt-in-the-hoop.

  1. These heat removable stabilizers also come in a different type which is rather more like paper than plastic and tends to burn away rather like burning paper. The crispy bits are brushed away as well.
  2. Neither of these stabilizers will damage an embroidered item provided the manufacturer’s instructions are followed.


We hope you have enjoyed this 4 part series on stabilizers. We have merely covered the basics to get you going with one of those lovely new Janome embroidery machines we have just launched! If you wish to dig deeper into the topic we suggest you:

  • Check our google:

Urban threads

  • Check out You tube:

Enjoy the machine embroidery adventure…….. it is a fun ride!

About Liz Thompson

I am the National Education Manager for Janome & Elna Canada and I LOVE to sew! I have been employed full time in the sewing and quilting industry for over 30 years so I bring a wealth of sewing knowledge & expertise to this blog. I enjoy all forms of sewing from quilting to sewing garments to machine embroidery and software. Pretty much everything in my life is seen through the eyes of a passionate sewer! I am constantly on the look out for fun, innovative and inspiring ideas to share with you all on this blog. I also love to sew, read, knit , crochet, travel and spend time with my family and friends.
This entry was posted in Janome Embroidery, Janome Sewing Machine and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Gayle says:

    Thanks that was a most interesting and informative series I think Stabilizers can be a bit of a worry if you dont understand what each actually does. This series has given lots of information and choices
    Thanks so much


Comments are closed.