Monday, 9 February 2015


Technically, I'm a day late for this celebration because it's February the 9th here in New Zealand, but it's still February the 8th in the USA and surely it's still ok if somewhere in the world it's still the 8th ~

Hari-Kuyo is a Japanese tradition marked on the 8th day of February each year, where Japanese needle workers take their broken and worn needles, from the past year, to the shrine where they are placed in a tofu like substance in a respectful memorial of tenderness & gratitude for their service and to pray for improved skills. 

Literally translated Hari {means Needle} and Kuyo {means memorial}

Now, why I know about this is because I read Susan Elliot's blog {Plays with Needles} and she's talked about Hari-Kuyo hereherehere & here

What an awesome tradition and not one I have participated in ~ until now that is ~

I LOVE reading Susan's blog, she's SO creative and SO talented, she's not been blogging for a while and now she's back! ~ thanks Susan I missed you interesting posts and visually detailed photos ~

Her latest posts have inspired me to participate in Hari-Kuyo or at the very least motivate me to set myself up to celebrate with an actual aged and worn needle in 2016, a needle that I have kept aside just for Hari-Kuyo instead of cursing & disposing of it immediately for I was in the middle of something when the needle expired ~ I am wondering Susan, is it ok to include 'sewing machine needles' ~ I know I have had some of those break during the past year whereas hand needles not so much? ~ I don't make Kimonos for a living so that could be why! ~

Susan designed an awesome needle book a few years back that she still offers as a e-course as well as sew in labels she offers in her etsy shop. The needlebook has a page in the back for {Broken but not forgotten} needles waiting for Hari-Kuyo ~

~ Susan's colourful design with embroidery and toggles ~ LOVE IT ~

I have committed and purchased the .pdf and now it's onto choosing the fabrics. I am looking forward to making this using her techniques for constructing this little book.

Currently my needle situation looks a bit like this ~ not exactly organised ~

~ There's a pin cushion beside my favourite chair ~ no needle labels here ! ~

~ My Mum made me this amazing hardanger needle book a few years back, I LOVE it, BUT ~

~ She labelled it how 'she' likes her needles filed with her oft used needles ~

~ Then there's all my Sue Spargo HUGE needles still filed in their original packaging ~

~ I'm GOING TO make up this Sue Spargo needlebook for those needles ~

~ The there's this beauty on my studio table, still no labels here! ~

SO, as you can see I need some organisation and better portability, if I leave the house I carry the needle in the project but there's not always one needle required so I need to do something ~ it's not fair on those needles to be treated so disdainfully, they should be respected, without them I could not do what I LOVE to do ~ thanks Susan for showing me the light, for motivating me and I really look forward to you continuing to blog ~


  1. Congratulations Rae on your new commitment to your needles. I loved this post about all the different ways you are currently storing your needles. I didn't know who Sue Spargo was or why she needs big needles so I found that interesting. It also looks like you are a casketeer? I am friends with a few ladies who are participating in that. Maybe you know GEnie Posnett? I think I spyed a pack of some kind of Japanese needles on your work table?? Blessed and bountiful stitching Rae! xo Susan

  2. Interesting Raewyn I have heard of such a celebration. I adore the needle case your mother made you, so pretty and a treasured possession I'm sure. Also the wooden spool holder, where did you find that treasure!

  3. Very interesting post, I hadn't heard of hari kuyo either. I never used to understand what a difference the different needles made but these days I have needles everywhere too! (And scissors are another of those things you need many pairs of!)


Thank you for taking the time out to look at my blog and to partake of my creative pursuits. Creating with textiles and fibres is a passion I embrace with abandon. Comments from those who understand this joy are food for the soul.
You can catch me at

Have a great day!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...