Welcome to the Quilting Board!

Already a member? Login above
loginabove
OR
To post questions, help other quilters and reduce advertising (like the one on your left), join our quilting community. It's free!

Results 1 to 24 of 24

Thread: Do Quilting Pins Go Bad?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Crispy_Frog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Garland, TX
    Posts
    654

    Do Quilting Pins Go Bad?

    I've been playing with quilting for 13 years and over the years have discarded pins for feeling dull. I run them through the little strawberry emery pin cushion to "sharpen" them, but that doesn't seem to help. I'm getting frustrated by the amount of pins that suddenly seem dull. I primarily have the yellow-top pins. Should I invest more in pins? Is there a preferred brand that stays sharp?

    Any suggestions?

  2. #2
    Power Poster
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    35,099
    Yes, pins do get dull over time. When I buy a new package of flower head pins, I only put out half of them. I rarely need a lot of pins and once the first half gets dull, I change them out.

  3. #3
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    western NY formerly MN, FL, NC, SC
    Posts
    48,074
    Blog Entries
    53
    we spend so much money on other quilting supplies. In my estimation, replacing pins is not very expensive.
    Nancy in western NY
    before you speak T.H.I.N.K.
    T is it True? H is it Helpful? I is it Inspiring? N is it Necessary? K is it Kind?

    Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we are here we might as well dance.

  4. #4
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    4,354
    Sometimes a few pins are dull right out of the box, too.

  5. #5
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Outside St. Louis
    Posts
    33,959
    My favorite thin long pins bend pretty easy. I use them to match up intersections.
    Another Phyllis
    This life is the only one you get - enjoy it before you lose it.

  6. #6
    Super Member GEMRM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    South West Ontario
    Posts
    1,847
    Quote Originally Posted by JustAbitCrazy View Post
    Sometimes a few pins are dull right out of the box, too.
    I personally like the white and red glass head pins because they seem to be a good quality and I can iron right over them if need be, but there are one or two that are dull right out of the box, even with these ones.
    A husband is the perfect confidant to tell your secrets to - he can't reveal them to anyone else because he wasn't really listening when you told him!

  7. #7
    Power Poster lynnie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Long Island
    Posts
    24,410
    Blog Entries
    1
    i finally broke down and bought a big box of the multi colored daisy heads. half of them were dull right out of the box. frustrating. i could have spent that money on fabric! What is the best pins around? I like long ones the best.
    put off till tomorrow what you can do today, and if you procrastinate long enough, you may never have to do it.

  8. #8
    Super Member quiltingshorttimer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    kansas
    Posts
    4,946
    Blog Entries
    37
    I think the yellow headed ones I have aren't that very sharp from the get-go. My sharpest (and what I'm turning to more and more) are some glass headed, shorter, Fons & Porter pins I got at Tuesday Morning.

  9. #9
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    4,354
    I have all kinds of pins, each in their own pincushion or taking up half of a pincushion. My super thin pins have all been really sharp and have stayed sharp through heavy use. If you want thin pins, do not just believe the printing on the package where it says "very fine", instead look at the fine print where it tells you the thickness of the pin. Many times it will be 0.5, which is not a super fine pin, but the package will say "very fine" or something similar. If you want super fine pins you want it a bit thinner than that. Look for the yellow and blue glass head Clover pins that say 0.4 thickness on the package. These pins look exactly like the ones they sell which are 0.5 thick, and I've never seen them at JoAnn's, only at some quilt shops and bigger quilt shows. Those are the bomb for piecing! They don't distort the fabric when you pin and are so thin you can sew right over them. Most of the time if the machine needle hits one of the pins (sew a bit slower over the pins) it will just nudge that super thin pin over. Once in a while I hit one dead on and the pin just gets bent at a ninety degree angle by the machine needle, and I throw it away. But your sewing machine will be undamaged. For a longer really thin pin, you can buy all blue flower head pins at some JoAnn's, which are 0.45 thick. The flower heads are dark blue on one side and light blue on the other side.

  10. #10
    Super Member coopah's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Horse Country, FL
    Posts
    7,190
    Blog Entries
    1
    I bought some long, glass headed pins at WalMart. They are sharp and very satisfactory. I also have a bunch of the flower-headed pins, but they seem to be getting dull. Time for more from WalMart!
    "A woman is like a tea bag-you can't tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water." Eleanor Roosevelt

  11. #11
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    4,163
    I just tossed almost an entire box of dull basting pins. They wouldn't go thru all the layers. I think some just come that way. The yellow headed pins have a thicker shaft and that seems to dull faster to me. Try the glass headed pins, they bend and have to be tossed every once and a while but they do seem sharper.

  12. #12
    Junior Member jumpin' judy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Cedar Hill, TX
    Posts
    198
    Quote Originally Posted by quiltingshorttimer View Post
    I think the yellow headed ones I have aren't that very sharp from the get-go. My sharpest (and what I'm turning to more and more) are some glass headed, shorter, Fons & Porter pins I got at Tuesday Morning.
    Me too! Only mine were long and so very sharp. I've had them for years and never seen them again--anywhere. They may not make them anymore. I don't remember one of them going dull.
    ​Jumpin' Judy

  13. #13
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    446
    Lady in my guild shared her tip: every year for Christmas she buys a new box of pins for herself. She tosses the old ones (sharp or not) and says it has saved her sanity! Don't know about the tossing out of ALL of them, but I would be much more inclined to toss a handful if I had a backup!

  14. #14
    Super Member Jan in VA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Piedmont Virginia in the Foothills of the Blue Ridge Mtns.
    Posts
    8,510
    For sharpness and quality, I always buy Clover brand pins...the flower topped ones and the tinier red/white topped ones.
    https://www.amazon.com/Clover-Flower...er+sewing+pins

    https://www.amazon.com/Clover-Silk-P...er+sewing+pins

    But even those will rust with time and improper storage. You can't even really see that; you just know when you try to pin with them and they don't slide smoothly. I found that not much will help that situation, had to toss several packages of Clover flower-head pins when the shop closed many years ago. it nearly killed me to throw out those expensive pins, but nothing worked to improve them and my nerves were worth the pitch.

    I use the longer, heavier yellow-ball-topped pins to stick blocks/sections/borders to my design wall, so some less quality is okay there. These get bent or dulled and are more frequently tossed.

    I keep most all of my pins in a "Ewesful" pincushion made of wool which contains some lanolin.
    http://www.ewesful.com/ewesful.html

    Jan in VA
    Last edited by Jan in VA; 12-22-2017 at 12:24 PM.
    Jan in VA
    Living in the foothills
    peacefully colors my world.
    http://www.quiltingboard.com/members...bums19552.html

  15. #15
    Super Member redstilettos's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Location
    West Bend, WI
    Posts
    2,182
    Oh gosh, I thought it was just me! I bought a Huge box of yellow topped ones, and I swear they were thicker and duller than the ones I threw out!

  16. #16
    Super Member SusieQOH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    Central Ohio
    Posts
    8,820
    I really need to get some new pins. I have several varieties but suddenly they all seem dull. I haven't bought any in a long time so I guess it's time.
    I bought one of those new pincushions (forget the name) but the pins just stick to it. I love that thing!

  17. #17
    Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Posts
    71
    I find that pins corrode, esp. if the pincushion is made of the "wrong" stuff. I made one with crushed walnut shells and it ruined my pins....had the throw all the ones in that cushion away. The wool one, or even plain stuffing are good, and any that get a little dull, I push through an emery pincushion a few times. I ordered the emery...somewhere....can't recall now.

    I love the Clover pins, too. A few years ago I got some that were great, sharp and smooth, they came in a little box, glass tops blue on one side, yellow on the other. I few months ago I ordered what I thought were the same, well they LOOK the same, but they are much thinner and bend easily. Unfortunately I threw the package away, so I don't know if they were produced to be thinner, or they are just made cheaper now, as many things are. The new ones are usable, and great for fine materials, but I do have to be careful when pinning quilt blocks with them.

  18. #18
    Super Member cashs_mom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Houston, TX
    Posts
    6,008
    A bit off topic but when I read the title of this thread, I read it as "When Quilting Pins Go Bad"
    Patrice S

    Bernina Artista 180, Singer 301a, Featherweight Centennial, Rocketeer, Juki 2200 QVP Mini, White 1964 Featherweight

  19. #19
    Power Poster Boston1954's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    East Oklahoma - pining for Massachusetts
    Posts
    10,470
    Quote Originally Posted by SusieQOH View Post
    I really need to get some new pins. I have several varieties but suddenly they all seem dull. I haven't bought any in a long time so I guess it's time.
    I bought one of those new pincushions (forget the name) but the pins just stick to it. I love that thing!
    I have that same one but I worry about putting it too close to my sewing machine.
    Life is not a movie. No one is going to yell "CUT" when you make a mistake. - Anne L. Fulton

    I am from the South....39 miles south of Boston.

  20. #20
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    California
    Posts
    1,639
    Me too! I can't find them either.
    Penny

  21. #21
    Super Member crafty pat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Live Oak, Texas
    Posts
    6,037
    I have had the best luck with the glass head pins. I have been using mine for years and they are still good as new,

  22. #22
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    4,354
    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Denno View Post
    I love the Clover pins, too. A few years ago I got some that were great, sharp and smooth, they came in a little box, glass tops blue on one side, yellow on the other. I few months ago I ordered what I thought were the same, well they LOOK the same, but they are much thinner and bend easily. Unfortunately I threw the package away, so I don't know if they were produced to be thinner, or they are just made cheaper now
    It sounds to me like you bought the Clover very fine pins, which are 0.4 thick, not the usual 0.5 thick. You should rejoice! Those pins are the bomb! You can sew right over them and not worry about damaging your machine by hitting a pin. They do bend easily if you are aggressive when pinning, but they also don't distort the fabrics when you pin with them. Those are my absolute favorite pins, and not available at JoAnn's and my local quilt shops. I can only buy those when I go to a major quilt show.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Crispy_Frog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Garland, TX
    Posts
    654
    Does the pin cushion make a difference? Maybe the emery is too rough for the pins? Should I stick with the wool pin cushion?

  24. #24
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    118
    Quote Originally Posted by Crispy_Frog View Post
    I've been playing with quilting for 13 years and over the years have discarded pins for feeling dull. I run them through the little strawberry emery pin cushion to "sharpen" them, but that doesn't seem to help. I'm getting frustrated by the amount of pins that suddenly seem dull. I primarily have the yellow-top pins. Should I invest more in pins? Is there a preferred brand that stays sharp?

    Any suggestions?
    I have a pincushion made of steel wool that really sharpens the pins nicely. Then I run them through a bar of Ivory Soap, makes them smooth as silk.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.