Holding the Needle!

Many of you may have noticed that missives from The Unbroken thread aren’t arriving in your inbox as frequently as they were previously. There is a very simple reason for this: I am SUPER busy at school this autumn! For the first time in at least 15 years I am teaching two new courses – one in a new subject – and I’m the tutor/homeroom teacher for 24 brand new class seven students (every one sweet and wanting to do his or her best in school).

The new courses are Class 7 English and an Abitur level music course. The new challenges are fun, sometimes frightening and, up until now, overwhelming (I feel like a first year teacher all over again after 37 years of teaching and I’m a LOT older now than when I began teaching!)

All this means that when I’m not preparing for school, I’m stitching on the Loveday Crewelwork piece to meet my deadline. This leaves little time for writing.

However, all that said, I just had to share this discovery with all of you!

Some of you will remember that I had a lot of trouble a few years ago with pain in my hands and wrists while stitching. For the most part, I’ve felt great since making a few changes. Lately, with all the computer work for school, I’ve started to have some pain again and weakness in my hands. I can’t always open a jar, carry a heavy plant pot with one hand and – most importantly – hold on to a needle firmly.

And, dear readers, I’ve found a simple, effective and cheap solution. It doesn’t involve doctors, medicine, braces or splints – just a pair of rubber gloves!


Last week I simply couldn’t hold the needle firmly enough and my hands were getting fatigued. I needed to keep stitching so I ran across the street to the grocery and bought myself a pair of size small rubber gloves: the kind you wear when you do dishes (except I don’t). I bought a small size so they would fit snugly. I then cut the tips of the thumb, forefinger and middle finger of the gloves off each glove – right and left. It took bit of trial and error to get the right length but as long as you start with a longer length than you need, it’s easy to cut them off to be shorter.



I then slipped them over my thumbs, forefingers and middle fingers of each hand and tried a test stitch. And then another and another and another and I was away! The needle was firmly held between my fingers, I had no tension in my hands from trying to grip the needle and I didn’t drop it.

It’s been a week since I started using these “finger tips” and my stitching goes more quickly, I fumble the needle less often and I have more control of the needle than I did before.

Please let me know if you try this and if it works for you. I’m sure someone will eventually market some kind of “Needle Grabbing Finger Tips” and make a fortune but I love the idea that this is cheap and it works! Now, back to stitching easily and free of tension!

10 thoughts on “Holding the Needle!

  1. At work I persuaded my boss to splash out on gel mouse mats and everyone has noticed how much better our hands are. Even my boss admits that it seems to keep aches and pains to a minimum and that the extra cost was cash well spent.
    It might work for you too.

  2. Kathy, my Mom has used a similar product for years while she quilted. She got them from the office supply store. Sadly they no longer make them the same. The new ones don’t work. I will pass this onto her…she’s 92 and still quilts.

  3. Those used to be available, already cut off, at office-supply stores. I haven’t looked for them in years, but they were sold for file-clerks (before the “paperless office” [ha!] idea really took hold) and others who handled many pieces of paper in a day.
    For those like me who do use rubber gloves for dishwashing (due to allergies to certain soaps used at my workplace), this is also a good “recycle” when one glove wears out (for me, the left one stretches and becomes porous, I guess because I like to use fairly hot water) and you have to buy a pair to replace one.

  4. What a wonderful idea- I have a box of the latex gloves and cannot wait to try this. Since I the last stroke, the finger tips on my right hand seem to have quite a loss of feeling and the more tired I am, the worse it is. So I want to try this soon!

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