Saturday, October 22, 2011

Qualities of a good nalbinding needle

Hail, all!

Needles as a subject have been on my mind for some time. I have contacted two of my favorite suppliers to ask them if they'd consent to being interviewed, and I hope that they will be.

I have to admit, back when I started I used a simple metal tapestry needle. That did the trick, but in my humble opinion, the things you use to create should be beautiful, too. And the needle didn't feel good in my hands, and it didn't look good, either. Just metal and soulless.

My next set of needles were wood, but far too thin and flimsy. I broke all but one, and decided I would find some proper needles. So I went a-viking to find some proper ones.

Thus I found Grizzly Mountain Arts and Chestnut Tree. Both have absolutely beautiful needles. I ordered some from Chestnut Tree and were very impressed with the quality Deanna offers.

I've been drooling over the blue mammoth ivory and ancient walrus ivory needles that the folks at Grizzly Mountain arts use as a base, but as I live in Germany, there's not way to export them. Which makes me a very sad nalbinder.

Anyway, as I go on and on, I find I have particular likes in my needles:

- a nice thickness to it. No flimsy slits.
- a nice wide and long hole. I tend to work with thicker yarns and I can make many more passes with a proper amount of yarn on my needle.
- beauty. I want something nice to look at as I make it
- a slight curve to the needle. My current favorite is from Chestnut Tree and is a bit on the thin and small side for my tastes, but it has a slight curve to it that just makes the needle sing to the wool. I really love it.
- not too long, but no dwarf, either.

I would like to make my own needles at some point, but right now with everything else going on, I'll wait.

And you? Have you made your own needles? What are your favorites?

Do you have a favorite provider of your needles? Do you make your own?

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