small things and needles

Thank you for all the very kind birthday messages.

I like small things – particularly scale models. I like to see life-sized details replicated on a small scale. Some of us think large and like to see the bigger picture from a distance; some of us zoom in to study the minutiae, to see the details magnified. One of my best birthday gifts – a little treasure that will always make me think of my mum and smile – was this little model sewing machine that will keep needles safe. My mum is very good at many things, and particularly at choosing thoughtful presents.

And needles, too, are small things – with many small details to consider. I use John James needles because, in my view, they are the best. They are still made in England and have been produced in the traditional way by the same company since 1840. They are strong, flexible and reliable.Β  They tend to have a slightly tapering body, which results in a finer point. Many cheap needles are cylindrical with a sharpened point at the end, and these can be more difficult to stitch with, particularly when you’re stitching through several layers.

I wonder what our world would have been without the invention of this little tool.

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15 Responses to small things and needles

  1. Jan Marriott says:

    choosing just the right gift is an art.

  2. connie rose says:

    Lovely gift from your mum! Wish we could get John James sewing needles here — I do use their beading needles which are the best available, imo.

  3. chris gray says:

    “I wonder what our world would have been without the invention of this little tool.”

    …damned cold!….we couldn’t have stitched all those bearskins together to cover ourselves πŸ™‚

  4. lacativad says:

    I bought a packet of these needles at a little shop near my hometown in NY…it was always a favorite stop when I visited but has since closed it’s door. I cherish each needle from that packet and imagine what it was like when they were worth more than their weight in gold.

  5. i use those needles tooxxxlove your needle holderxlynda

  6. serenapotter says:

    they are great needles. i use them for piecing and use piecemakers for quilting.

    another happy birthday
    and what a fabulous present.

  7. Jeannie says:

    Like you I love John Jame’s needles and little things. The macro lens on my camera is my favorite tool. I hope you continue to celebrate your birthday well into the new year!

    • Karen Turner says:

      I have a variety of magnifying tools, one of which stands up over a surface so that you can see the grain of fabric through it. I’d love one of those microscope things that plugs into your computer. But then I’d never get anything done, I’d just be looking at pictures of stuff magnified beyond all recognition…

  8. Sweetpea says:

    I use the same needles, but I will NEVER be able to stitch as perfectly straight & fine as you, my friend! Glad you had such a lovely birthday :>]]

    • Karen Turner says:

      Lots of people say this and I never understand it! My stitches are usually neither straight nor even. Maybe it’s a trick of the camera πŸ˜‰

  9. annie! says:

    A belated Happy Birthday to YOU! And…way to go MOM!!!

  10. Penny B says:

    Happy Birthday
    What a little treasure!
    John James are indeed the best.

  11. MoF says:

    I love your tiny sewing machine; how beautiful! I use John James needles which I buy online from a company in the UK as they are not available in France. I wish that I could remember the name of the UK company as they ship world wide. Ah! well, like failing eyesight, a failing memory comes with age.

  12. Rachel says:

    That’s a delightful little enamelled sewing machine!

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