A few days ago I posted details of this on Instagram. People kinda went a bit nuts for it. (Hey I don’t mind being called a genius on social media. Schucks. (“Feigns humility but secretly enjoys the flattery”) It’s not genius (we’ll leave that term to groundbreaking, world changing scientific discoveries). But genius offen lies in simplicity. And I guess it’s one of those super simple, easy to do kinda things that solves a few problems in one go.
Life is full of petty little annoyances which on their own could be called trivial. But collectively…if you spend a whole day subjected to petty little annoyances? That amounts to one BIG annoyance. I’m a great believer that if you can check off those buggers one by one…then cumulatively, when you lump all those solved problems together, that leads to a much less annoyed (read calmer and nicer) individual.
Someone commented on IG that this seems alot of faff for needles. It’s actually not faffy at all. Can’t have taken me more than 10 minutes to cut and sew (not counting taking the photographs in between) and it is super duper easy too. And those 10 minutes will hopefully solve some of those pesky annoyance critters.
So I have several bug bears when it comes to those little machine needle packets:
- Having my needles to hand
- Finding the packet I want quickly. (I semi addressed that here but it’s still open to improvement)
- Knowing I’m running low at a glance and need to restock
- Remembering what needle is currently in the machine (I always forget)
- When a needle has been used, but not yet ready for the bin, it usually goes in a pin cushion to save it. Then I forget what it is and throw it out anyway.
(NB: I am fully aware that needles are colour coded or marked (in frikkin microscopic writing) to identify their type. But going through every single packet to find the matching colour codes; or cracking out a microscope (which I don’t have) to read the engraved numbers? Well that’s the very definition of faff to me. )
I really don’t need to write a tutorial for this. It’s pretty apparent how this is made.
I used this felt. Bought for another project that never materialised so it’s been sat in my stash for like, two years??!! (Hangs head in shame). So yes, this quick and easy make will not only save your sanity, it’s also a great stash buster. You don’t have to use felt. Leather scraps word would work. As would a little quilted version in fabric. Or fabric stiffened with interfacing. Neoprene could be quite funky! Anyway…you get the idea.
It’s a rectangle. With narrow strips sewn across it ( the strips need to be approx half the height of a needle packet)…then separated into individual pockets with lines of stitching. That’s it.
So lets work through the various problems this hangy felt thing solves. Firstly, I can organise my needles by type and then size in the little individual pockets. When inserted upside down, I can clearly see the part of the casing that shows the needle type and size AND the number of needles of each type and size that I have left. (That solves 1, 2 & 3 from my list).
When I have a needle that I’ve used but still has some life left in it, I can pin it through the felt right infront of it’s corresponding packet. That solves number 5.
This pocket at the bottom…in a different colour…is where I place the pack that corresponds to the needle currently in my machine. And that solves number 4. Boom!
You could up the anti by embroidering each pocket with the needle type you plan to store in it. This only occurred to me after I’d made the thing. But I did a little tester to see how it would look and I kinda like it!
My hangy thing is held up using these clips. If I recall correctly I actually found them in a charity shop. But you can get them quite readily on Amazon. I quite like these black ones!
Then it’s simply hung from some of these net curtain wire end loops (I have no idea of the proper name for them) screwed into my wall right behind my machine.
In the interests of keeping it real and just in case you had any misconceptions about my level of organizing, take a look at that overflowing zip draw and that draw of thread spools. Neither of which will actually close now. They might get their own felt hangy thing one day….or not.