Quilting Tip: 3

2 09 2007

Back when I was about 10 years old, my mother taught me to sew on an old Singer treadle machine. For my 21st birthday, I used the money given to me by family and bought myself a Bernina sewing machine, which I continue to use now. In all that time (and a LOT of years have passed since I was 10!), I never really noticed that there was a groove on the front of a sewing machine needle. And if I had noticed it, I never knew what is was for.

Until the other day. I was watching an episode of Simply Quilts (yes it’s sad, I know, but I’m taping it for a friend who doesn’t have cable), and one of the hints was to use the groove to help you thread the needle. Well, blow me down – it works! I’d been muttering to myself about the size of the eye of these needles and blaming my not-so-perfect ageing eyesight, and cursing whenever I unsuccessfully tried to thread the needle.

What you do is run the tip of the thread down the groove and it slots straight into the eye. Not quite 100% every time, but a helluva lot more often than doing it manually!

The other ‘take home’ tip from the show was to NOT moisten the end of the thread to get it into the eye (like, how many thousands of times have I done *that* over the years!). It seems this expands the fibres, making them even thicker and less likely to go into that tiny space. If you moisten anything, moisten the area around the eye of the needle.

Who’d have thought?

See this web page for a diagram of the groove on sewing machine needles.



One response

2 09 2007
Quilting Tip: 4 « At Random

[…] ever used metallic thread—and it drove me MAD! It snapped regularly, and I had to continually rethread the needle. After doing two sections (of I was ready to give up in […]

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