Sunday, March 18, 2012

Gifted Gadgets!

I can’t get enough of looking for and seeing all the cool accessories that quilters bring when we gather!

One of my jobs when teaching a class is taking on any un-stitching that needs to be done so that the students can continue to make progress --- not feel like they are going backwards by having to rip out should the need arise ((And it arises --- we all know it does!))

I had asked if someone had a seam ripper I could borrow to help unsew for a student while I was walking around the room --- I tend to talk and walk and seam rip at the same time. I bet you didn’t know that was a well honed Bonnie Skill!

Wanda handed me her seam ripper….and…OOOOOOOOOO!! I need one of these!

glendaleCA2012 057

Slide the little bar --- out comes the ripper part! No cover to lose!

glendaleCA2012 055

But LOOK! Slide the black bar the other way ----tweezers on the other end!

Not to mention it’s PINK, Y’all! PINK!

I looked all over the show to see if I could find a pair of my own just like this ---no such luck. So guess what Wanda did at the end of the day? Gifted them to me! Isn’t that sweet? I’ll think of her every time I use them, and the fact that she so freely parted with them just touched me deeply.

Speaking of seam rippers --- I had a student in class yesterday who had one that just would NOT cut the thread when I was trying to help her unpick. I asked how long she had had that seam ripper --- "OH, since JUNIOR HIGH!" LOL!! I’m not sure on this gal’s age or the year that she was in Junior High School, but I am pretty sure she is at least a few years older than me. The older I get, the harder it is to judge people's age -- but let's say she is MY age -- I started Junior High in September of 1974. That's one old seam ripper....

We held a funeral with a moment of silence for her 40 year old ((At Least!)) Seam Ripper.

If your seam ripper doesn’t easily slice the thread --- it’s time to let it go. That blade in the curved edge should be nice and sharp --- it’s like a rotary blade. They get dull ---and then they are seam pickers only, not seam rippers and it takes more than twice as long to fight with the seam to get the un-stitching job done.

Treat yourself to a new one. Throw the old one away. Keeping it is like holding on to a ball point pen that no longer writes just because it might start writing again at some point down the road if we wish it too hard enough! ;c)


  1. Heehee I probably have two of those! If I'm struggling I have been known to use a scalpel type knife - dangerous I know but needs must when the devil drives! Maybe I should just get a new seam ripper....

  2. I replace ALL my seam rippers every January.
    I keep rippers where ever my work stations are located.
    There's always a sharp ripper at hand.

    1. Ok, I want one of those seam rippers! Found a link on amazon (http://www.amazon.com/Allary-Combi-Cut-Ripper-Tweezers-Various/dp/B00555I79G) but they are out of stock. I'm gonna find one!

    2. Kandra,
      I found some at this website. http://www.marthasquiltingcorner.com/cgi-bin/Store/store.cgi?product=quilting-notions-and-supplies-1&productid=418_1130 I hope this helps

  3. seam rippers seem to be the things that grow legs and run away for me. I can never seem to put my hands on one when I want to. I figure when I move, I'll find a whole family of them in the corner of some box of fabric. I mostly use now the teeny, tiny, itsy, bitsy rotary cutter as a seam ripper.....works great1

  4. I just bought new seam rippers. My old seam ripper is a Singer and has the perfect pointy end for turning corners... so it goes in a drawer with those types of tools.

  5. See, I am so proud of the fact that I haven't lost my 20 yr old seam ripper that I can't seem to let it go. :) I lose my glasses on a daily basis so keeping tabs on my seam ripper is a source of pride. I'm thinking I just need to get over it. Also thinking that there will be a sudden run on these seam rippers. :)

  6. This is very very funny, I bought one of these, it is green though, in Florida years ago, and once I was home I tried to unpack it from its box :-) I than understood what I had bought !

  7. Anonymous4:50 PM EDT

    Bonnie - the JOY of a new sharp seam/stitch ripper can never be understated lolol. We all just plain forget to pick up a new one.

    I received my Clover newbie from a friend, who tucked it in with my Christmas gift!

    What a differenc! OK, everyone with a seam ripper over 3 years old... shop for a new one! (mine was eons old lol)


  8. I have a seam ripper older than that and still use it. It's even sharp. :-) I'll never toss it because it was my Mom's. Every time I use it (sadly, more than I care to say), I feel connected to her.

    To keep it sharp, I was told to use a Bead Reamer that beaders/jewelry makers use. I had absolutely NO idea what that was or how much it cost but I went into a local bead shop and asked.

    Sure enough it was a common enough item. Beaders use it to (apparently) make the holes in the beads ever so slightly larger, hence the "reamer" part of the name.

    Essentially, it's a mini conical rasp. Use it like a file across the curved blade part of our seam rippers and it sharpens the edge.

    Best part .. the ones I bought were a set of 3 for ... are you sitting down?? ... $2.50 :-)

    [I was anticipating some exotic tool with a comparable price, so I was happily surprised.]

  9. I have always lost seamrippers long before they could ever become dull...maybe that is why I them stashed all over the house. Then again that way each seamripper is only used once or twice a year which means they will never wear out either!

  10. LMAO, I still have my seam ripper from Home Ec class in junior high school. And that would have been almost 30 years ago!!!!!

  11. Want to tell you: hubby makes my rippers seem endless in time and duty: he sharpens them with very fine sanding paper, folded to do its duty, and yaheeee! here goes Irene again! floating hair, stampeding through the seemingly endless seams, ripping around (Irene the ripper yep!)
    They only are taken to their tiny ripper graves - ripper RIP - after the the handle refuses to be connected with the ripper itself again, taken lots of glue, mechanical fastenings and you name it.
    You'll find me anyhow under my tombstone with this one and only ripper in hand I guess. Though the latter situation will be on hold for the next eighty or something years, as I plan to wear the ripper down to its bare handle itself, and most of all: all by myself!
    Love from this dark spot on the globe, named Amsterdam 8^}

  12. My ripper past away two months ago when I learned it needs to be very sharp to work well. Well,... I learned to sew 35 years ago. Now, I have a new one and yes, it works better than the old one. Have a good week!

  13. I have one of those in green. I belonged to my grandmother so who knows how old it is, but it still works great.

  14. Hi Bonnie
    I have found these Combicut unpickers in Australia.
    He sends internationally if required.

  15. My friend bought me one of those for my birthday, and I love it.
    Great tips for keeping the ripper sharp.

  16. Anonymous9:29 PM EDT

    I was at Judy Laquidara's retreat last month and kept hearing a little buzzing noise. Wanda was using a battery operated moustache trimmer to "unsew". We all had to see and get a tutorial on "how-to". Great for longer seams.


  17. I just bought a seam ripper with an ergonomic handle and had that same lightbulb moment at how sharp it is. Now I just have to get into the optometrist for new glasses so i can see what I'm doing...

  18. I have the seem ripper that came with my first Sewing Machine. Purchased right after I got married. Well that was 40 years ago and it is long retired to its box with the feet. I have newer ones that are sharper.

  19. i have quite a few seam rippers, but i have two Clover seam rippers that i keep out at all times. one by each of the machines i work on the most. those Clover seam rippers are the best in my opinion because the handle fits my hand nicely.

  20. I read a tip somewhere a few years ago to tape the cap of your seam ripper right on your sewing machine and then you have a safe place to put your ripper in after each use. I love it!

  21. I have multiple clover seam rippers, one for all occasions.lol I found one of those gadgets at scissorman.com.au and they are in stock; might have to get one to try out;)

  22. Your post reminded me that I wanted this set from Lee Valley for a long time: http://www.leevalley.com/en/gifts/page.aspx?p=58722&cat=4,104,53208&pb=1#pb
    Now it is finally ordered. Have a nice day y'all.

  23. I remember a woman saying once that she gifts herself a new weam ripper every year for her birthday! I always that was such a neat idea.

  24. I've heard you can sharpen a seam ripper. Just sayin.


If you are commenting as "anonymous" please leave your name at the end of your comment.

Did you know that ad space on this blog provides for all of the free patterns and free mysteries and challenges at no cost to you? Without ads, this blog would not be possible.

Thank you for understanding the many hours that go into this blog 6 days a week, 52 weeks a year. :)