rickdroid

Hand sewing tip for people with arthritis

Recommended Posts

I have arthritis and hand sewing can get painful at times.  The problem is having to grip the needle hard enough to be able to pull the needle through several layers of leather or, sewing some really tough leather.  I have been using nitrile gloves (the same ones I use for dying leather) to give me some extra grip on the needle.  Problem is they make your hands sweaty and are pretty uncomfortable for a long sewing session. 

A few days ago i came across a container of  'fingertip moistener',  trade name "Tacky Finger" that is normally used by people who have to handle lots of paperwork.  'Tacky Finger' is used instead of having to continually wet your fingers when sorting through reams of paperwork.  I used to use the stuff and remembered that it did make my fingers feel tacky so i thought that i would try it to see if it was of any help - and it worked very well.  It makes my fingers tacky enough to be able to grip the needles without feeling like i have to squeeze them in half.  The grip is pretty close to what i got with the nitrile gloves but didn't cause any problems handling the thread.

Thought this tip might be of use to some of you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
JD62   

:You_Rock_Emoticon: "Thanks!"

Edited by JD62

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, electrathon said:

http://www.michaels.com/bead-landing-mini-flat-nose-pliers/10443467.html#q=pliers&start=8

You might try these.  if my holes are tight I use them to pull, or push, the needle.

I've got a pair or those and occasionally need to user them but they really slow me down.  The Tacky Finger allows me to work at a pace closer to people who don't have arthritis.  Saves me a lot of time and a fair amount of pain.

I just thought that some others might find the information helpful.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
480volt   

I started waxing my thread with shoemaker's wax, and I find it makes a huge difference in gripping the needles. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
JD62   

Hmm wish I could find needles for that thread!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
JLD   

Great tip thank you :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 06/06/2017 at 3:22 AM, JD62 said:

Hmm wish I could find needles for that thread!

:lol:    

Imagine the size of the cow the leather came off.:cow:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great tip and I was just daydreaming about sometime like this today!! and here I find the answer. I have a bad thumb....

one question or concern is.. if it gets on the leather from handling before it is finished how does it affect the leather taking colour etc.?

Currently I use the vinyl gloves And needle nose when needed AND I have a plug of bees wax on the side of my horse and pony jaws and I 'dip" my awl in it ever hole or two so the wholes are waxed and the needles pick some up along the way.

shoe makers wax on the thread would likely act the same way and I will look into it

I am about to experiment with finger cots to avoid the sweaty hand action:

http://www.ebay.ca/itm/100Pc-Orange-Natural-Latex-Rubber-Finger-Cots-Sleeve-Textured-End-Tacky-Multiuse-/131813555791?hash=item1eb0b33e4f:g:fS4AAOSwInxXNpKq

I can t find Tacky Finger in Canada but seem that SortKwik is essentially the same thing and available at staples.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, plinkercases said:

Great tip and I was just daydreaming about sometime like this today!! and here I find the answer. I have a bad thumb....

one question or concern is.. if it gets on the leather from handling before it is finished how does it affect the leather taking colour etc.?

I have never noticed any reaction between veg-tan and Tacky Finger or SortKwik but as always Test Test Test.

I can t find Tacky Finger in Canada but seem that SortKwik is essentially the same thing and available at staples.

I have used both Tacky Finger. and Sort Kwik or a similar spelling without any problem.

Thanks

rick

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Rick. I will pick SortKwik up today as I hope to get some bench time on my holiday this next few weeks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have carpal tunnel syndrome and it gets painful to sew...

A saddle maker told me to pull the needle through the leather with a piece of bees was each time the needle was tight, my fingers took on some of the wax each time and now I never have to use a plyers when sewing. It was the best piece of advise I have received so far in leather working.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Deuce   

Thanks for the Tip! Anything to cut down on my hand pain ....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For what it's worth, I often use a sailmakers palm to help push the needles through tough or thick leather. For those who aren't familiar with this tool, it's worn on your hand and has a hard, textured plate to protect your hand when pushing the needle, almost like a flattened thimble. Once you get used to it, it's quite comfortable.

All the best, Mike

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well I just did my first 7 hours of stitching in the last 12 months... from 2 layers of 4oz through to 3 layers of 10-11 and that SortKwik is amazing stuff. Thanks for the tip. Much nicer not wearing vinyl gloves.

I will say that after a year away from riding the stitching horse I was very much beginners again and did not really come back up to speed and accuracy until last piece... oh well good to have gotten some hobby time.

Edited by plinkercases

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now