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Thread: solutions for sore fingers

  1. #1
    Super Member bebe's Avatar
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    Do you have sore fingers after hand quilting here are a few tricks to try hope this helps!!!! :wink:


    Chapstick

    Bag Balm (more commonly used for cow's udders)

    Styptic pencil keeps bleeding to a minimum
    in case of pricks

    Dampen sore fingers and rub them over a bar of
    soap before bed

    Soak fingers in warm water with Johnson's(TM) foot
    soap; smooth callouses with a pumice stone


  2. #2
    Senior Member sandybeach's Avatar
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    I just started "hand sewing" when putting the binding on my quilts. I found that using Mole Skin Plus (found in the foot notions isle at WalMart) works best for me. I rarely have the needle go through the mole skin and it is flexible enough for me to do other things without having to take it off.

  3. #3
    Super Member lfw045's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sandybeach
    I just started "hand sewing" when putting the binding on my quilts. I found that using Mole Skin Plus (found in the foot notions isle at WalMart) works best for me. I rarely have the needle go through the mole skin and it is flexible enough for me to do other things without having to take it off.
    I'll have to try that! Good idea!

  4. #4
    Super Member mpspeedy's Avatar
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    Bebe,

    I guess I handquilt so often that my callouses never go away. One advantage or disadvantage of getting older is that I have less feeling in my fingers to begin wth. Occasionsly I stick myself really hard. Years ago I volunteered at our local school and stubbed my finger on the Mimograph machine. It bled like a stuck pig because I had actually ripped the callous off of my finger. It healed ASAP. When working on a frame I use both hands so I have callouses on both hands. Using both hands makes reaching a lot easier.

  5. #5
    Super Member Shemjo's Avatar
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    In the winter my fingers, mostly my thumbs crack and while all the other products do help, I have found the best thing for me is to dab some Carmex or chapstick on the sore spot. Most handy because I usually have a small jar of Carmex in my pocket for chapped lips this time of the year! :D

  6. #6
    Super Member purplemem's Avatar
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    My son brought me some "Rub-It", found at truck stops for truckers to use on callouses.

    This stuff is fantastic! It is sold at TA truck stops. I use it at night on my fingers (I do everything by hand) and in the morning they are all smooth again.

  7. #7
    Senior Member johnette's Avatar
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    Almost 30 years ago I belonged to a quilting group made up of ladies in their 70's and 80's. I was the token youngster. These ladies believed that the sewing machine was bad and was for "quick bedding" in an emergency. They taught me to use Vick's vaporub for sore fingers. And it worked. I have since graduated to machine sewing and quilting, but haven't given up on the Vicks.

  8. #8
    Super Member Barbm's Avatar
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    what a timely topic. my hands hurt today, just that achyness in the joints feeling. I just wait for the "kinks" to work out but I think I will try the Vicks, I think it's turning out to be the miracle cure for everything.

    Side effect, my cough should ease for a while, I think I can handle that.

    Barb

  9. #9
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    I think we had a competition for bad hands--I'd win. In the winter I usually have 4-6 splits. I found some stuff from Canada--a sealant--but Wal-Mart doesn't sell it anymore. So, this winter I've resorted to super glue. At night I plaster something on my hands--Glove Me Tender, or Burt's Bees Almond Hand cream, or his hand salve. I tried A+D ointment last night. I find I can only hand sew in the morning--my splits are too sore by night time. I hesitate to work with fabric without band-aids sometimes because one may bleed without me knowing.

    I noticed yesterday that a big needle was much easier to get through the fabric that smaller ones. I thought it'd be the other way around.

  10. #10
    Power Poster sandpat's Avatar
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    I'm gonna try some of these remedies..thank you all.

    For times when your fingers and joints are sore and its hard to pull the needle through, just grab a balloon and use it to wrap around the needle. Makes it really easy to pull it through.

    I tried that liquid bandaid stuff for my fingers and it works pretty well, then just peels off when you are done.

  11. #11
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    I am an on and off hand quilter. I make a crib quilt, mostly applique , for each new grand child. Each quilt is designed to represent something special in the family. My son and his wife are now expecting twins so I am quilting more than expected! and my fingers are killing me. I have a leatherlike thing for my middle pushing finger and that works fine but the thumb and especially the under middle and index finger are full of pricks and terrible. I cream them up with various things over night but is there any protecion I can use that will still let me sew (feel if the needle is through) without leaving me like a pin cushion?
    Thanks!

  12. #12
    Super Member GrannieAnnie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barbm View Post
    what a timely topic. my hands hurt today, just that achyness in the joints feeling. I just wait for the "kinks" to work out but I think I will try the Vicks, I think it's turning out to be the miracle cure for everything.

    Side effect, my cough should ease for a while, I think I can handle that.

    Barb
    My solution for achey hands is to buy a couple pair of the very stretchy little knit gloves you can buy at Wally World for under a dollar a pair. Put on the first pair, then the second. Sleep in them------------or wear them a few minutes thru the day. They are better than any pain relief.
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  13. #13
    Senior Member Hinterland's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sharono View Post
    . I cream them up with various things over night but is there any protecion I can use that will still let me sew (feel if the needle is through) without leaving me like a pin cushion?
    Thanks!
    Hi Sharon,

    Try electrical tape on your finger. You can still feel the needle but it won't prick.

    Janet

  14. #14
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    sounds like a great idea. thank you!
    as long as i have you here, what size needle do you use? Is it easier to push in needles with higher numbers even though they end up bending?
    Sharon

  15. #15
    Super Member Pat625's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barbm View Post
    what a timely topic. my hands hurt today, just that achyness in the joints feeling. I just wait for the "kinks" to work out but I think I will try the Vicks, I think it's turning out to be the miracle cure for everything.

    Side effect, my cough should ease for a while, I think I can handle that.

    Barb
    Put a generous amount of Vicks on the bottom of your feet, and then wear warm socks over them..It works great for coughs and nchest congestion..sounds crazy but works!

  16. #16
    Super Member SteveH's Avatar
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    I am sorry for intruding on this discussion, since the only callouses I get these days are from knitting chainmail (yes, chainmail)... but I would like to offer the following advice based on my experiences.

    First:
    Oz of Prep vs Lb of Cure; Stretch each of the muscles gently from the forearms to your fingers before you work. A lot of hand and finger pain it actually due to tightened tendons and muscles in the forearms. Even a little bit of this will make a big difference. If you are wondering if YOU need to do this ask yourself if you are always trying to stretch them out afterwards...

    Second:
    Many of my students found that they could reduce the after effects of a lot of hand/finger use if they increased their water intake before hand. My doctor confirmed that mild dehydration can exasperate arthritis and stiff older joints, and that especially in the winter when heaters are drying folks out indoors, the problem gets worse.

  17. #17
    Senior Member cdmmiracles's Avatar
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    I like emu oil.......just rub a little on my fingers before bed, after an evening of handsewing and I'm good to go in the morning.

  18. #18
    Super Member #1piecemaker's Avatar
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    When I started hand quilting, my MIL told me the best thing for sore fingers was to stick them in some rubbing alcohol before I went to bed at night. I found this to work wonders.
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  19. #19
    Senior Member Hinterland's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sharono View Post
    sounds like a great idea. thank you!
    as long as i have you here, what size needle do you use? Is it easier to push in needles with higher numbers even though they end up bending?
    Sharon
    Sharon, if you're having trouble pushing the needle through, try a different needle. Sometimes a smaller needle will help (the higher the number, the smaller the needle), sometimes a bigger needle will do the trick. If the needle is bending, try to lessen the tension of the quilt sandwich.

    Janet

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