Oh my goodness, I do love safety pins. Invented in 1849, they have three superpowers when it comes to mending:
- holding hems, seams and patches in place while you stitch
- marking holes and other damaged spots in clothing, saving you time trying to find them later
- first aid for clothing emergencies that occur away from home, preventing public nudity until you have time to mend
For hand stitching, and sashiko-inspired stitching in particular, I prefer safety pins to sewing pins because they keep my fingers safer – I’m less likely to get stuck by accident. (It took me decades to realise safety pins are called safety pins for a reason!)
You don’t need to buy safety pins if, like me, you just seem to collect them without trying. If you don’t have your own ragtag collection, however, I highly recommend these – they’re the only ones I deem worthy of selling in the shop.
Why? Curved safety pins are preferred by quilters – they’re extra strong and won’t bend under pressure, and the curve makes them easy to manoeuvre through thick layers of fabric and batting. The good news for menders is that they’re also great for pinning thick, sturdy fabrics (e.g. denim) and multiple layers of fabric when patching. Their size and super-strength means they are not suitable for delicate fabrics such as silk and cotton voile and could potentially leave larger holes than desired; try traditional fabric pins instead.
This pack includes 100 curved safety pins that are 32mm at their longest point. They’re made of metal in Japan and packaged in a reusable plastic case by the manufacturer.