Picking up where we left off last time,
let’s finish our look at the essential components of any stitcher’s workbasket.
Since we’ve already chatted about scissors and needles, let’s dive a little deeper into my workbasket and see what we can find.
Of course, there’s a laying tool…
Okay. There are several, but I reeaaalllly like laying tools. They’re so pretty – and so functional – and oh-so-collectible! 😉
And since I’m embroiderer, too, I find myself using one more times than not.
Never heard of a laying tool? No worries. I’ll tell you a little about them…
A laying tool is basically a little stick that you can use to keep your threads under control.
And a laying tool is essential when you work with more than one ply of a divisible thread in your needle. Use it to stroke the plies and keep them flat, so they lay smoothly on the surface of your canvas – or to tension your thread as you make a stitch.
Wood and metal laying tools are the most common, but you can also find them made of glass, bone, plastic – and even porcupine quills! You may also use a trolley needle, a mattress needle, or a large tapestry needle as a laying tool, if you prefer.
Most needlework shops carry a variety of different kinds, so you can test drive one before you make a purchase. (And I highly recommend test driving anything that costs more than $25, if at all possible.)
Eye spy…a needle minder.
What the heck is a needle minder? Well, it’s really just a fancy magnet, but it sure does come in handy when you’re stitching. Just pop it onto your canvas and – Voilá! You have a handy place to park your threaded needle between stitching sessions.
Did I mention that these little beauties are collectible, too? In fact, I know several stitchers who like to match their needle minder to their project. (Think jack-o-lantern needle minder paired with a cutie-pie Halloween canvas.)
And finally, there’s the ever helpful – and essential – needle threader.
It may seem like such a wee tiny thing to get soooo excited over, but these little gadgets have saved my sanity more times than I can count!
Yes, I have magnifiers that can help my poor ol’ eyes, but it’s not just seeing the eye of the needle that’s the problem.
I have limited time available to stitch and I don’t want to spend a single precious minute more than I absolutey have to with threading a needle.
All you have to do with these little gems is pop the hook into the eye of your needle, push the end of your thread through the wire, and pull! Then, my friend, you’re GOLDEN!
Just grab that threaded needle and start stitching!
Here’s a picture of my all-time favorite needle threader, in case you want to grab one for your project bag, too. (I mainly use the Tapestry/Chenille set, but the Threader Collection is mighty handy, too.)
You can get them here from The Silver Needle in Tulsa, Oklahoma. (Just scroll to the bottom of the page to find them.)
What’s your all-time favorite needlework tool or gadget? Tell me in the comments box below. I can’t wait to hear from you!
And remember, next week, we have our Kick Off Party for the Threadventure! I hope you’ll join me. Not sure what the Threadventure is all about? Click here and hop over and learn more. 🙂
Until next time…happy stitching!
PS: Are you on our Serendipity Needleworks NeedleNotes list? That’s where we share tips, ideas, events, and cheer each other on and I’d love to have you join me, so click here to subscribe. I’ll see you there! 😉