Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Tool of the Week: Needle


Tool of the Week: Needle
Originally uploaded by alsokaizen

The needle, this is perhaps the most basic tool for any one who works with fibers... So when I started this silly little series I was mostly thinking about how it would be a terrific way for me to practice my macro photography (which still requires a good deal of improvement) What I didn’t expect to find myself thinking about was how old most of the tools I use really are (not mine personally but in a historic sense) then in turn how old the practices that I work with are…I wiki-ed needle and (I don’t know how accurate this is) Needles were found just above an ash layer dated to 40,000 years ago at the Kostenki site in Russia. Wow! That’s some serious old there. We are talking about a tool that’s been around since the dawn of civilization essentially unchanged in design, and performing the same function for all that time. I’m suddenly in awe of this little guy…small but mighty, singular in purpose, and designed just about perfectly

6 comments:

jude said...

great post....it always amazes me, this little tool. when i think of having less, the needle is always a must.

alsokaizen said...

Hi Jude! It is definately one of the essentials

juanita sim said...

Yes, the sewing needle is definitely a beautiful, low tech tool. I bought some new hand quilting needles recently, #9 and 10 I think. I love how slender they are and how they just glide through the three layers of the quilt, almost no resistance at all. The eye is so tiny I can sometimes barely thread the thing! I wonder what tool you'll choose next?

lee said...

Have you run across a book called Women's Work, the First 20,000 Years? It addresses many of the arts that we continue to perfect. If I can remember the author I'll email it later. She focuses more on spinning and weaving, I think because she is a weaver, but covers some sewing as well. I remember loving the deep history and the irreverent tone.

juanita sim said...

Women's work, the first 20,000 years, women, cloth, and society in early times by Elizabeth Wayland Barber.

alsokaizen said...

That sounds like a book I would enjoy I'm gonna have to see if I can find it... thanks for the recomendation!