Monday, February 16, 2015

Thank You Uncle Bill!

Today I'm sending out a huge thank you to a guy that I don't even know exists...


Is there really an Uncle Bill who invented these tweezers??

These little tweezers live up to their slogan...



And they are one of the simplest and most useful tools you can own.  Not just for embroidery either...for any tedious task.

I bought multiple pairs to keep with my Japanese embroidery, at my work station and an extra for carrying around with various projects.

This past weekend I used them to remove the tiny bits that remain after removing my paper transfer pattern.



First I used the tekobari to score the paper on either side of each stitched line.  This helps the paper to tear away more easily.



Inevitably, little bits of paper are stuck under stitches and need to be removed...



The precision-point sliver grippers are THE tool for that job.

Right after the needlebook, scissors and tekobari...these are my fourth most valuable tool.  I use them to sink goldwork, for picking out stitches, for removing errant hairs and debris from needlework, etc...

Many of you out there are already Uncle Bill enthusiasts but if you didn't know about them until today, you can get them here.

I went searching for some background history on Uncle Bill but couldn't find any.  I only know that they are manufactured in the USA by this company in Connecticut.

Happy precision picking everyone!

14 comments:

Shirlee Fassell said...

My sweet husband got me a pair of these a while back and I love them!

Elaine said...

Thanks for sharing Susan, I have some tweezers but they are difficult to grip with, I will look out for these! I am very much a beginner to Goldwork and embroidery, I really enjoy your blog and always learn something!

Vicki W said...

Perfect timing! I was just dealing with some frustrating tweezers this weekend and wondering if I could find something better. Thank you!

Gerry Krueger said...

I love a new tool... It so pleasurable to have the right tool for the job... off to get Uncle Bill..

MelissaD said...

I've had my Uncle Bill tweezers for years and yes they are wonderful - precision indeed!

Susan Hemann said...

great, just ordered some! thanks

Rachel said...

They do look just right for those tricky picking bits...

Judy S. said...

And thank you, Susan. They look perfect for just about anything, including slivers.

Reconstructed Fabulousness said...

Thanks for sharing such a useful tool Susan, my order is placed :-) Rae

Createology said...

Uncle Bill will need to thank you dear for introducing him to sew many of us. Your Japanese stitching is truly a labor of love. Now I shall go backwards to see the previous post I missed. Uncle Bill Bliss...

Andrea D said...

I don't know if this is correct, but here's a link to a very brief history of Uncle Bill. http://www.bestmadeco.com/products/uncle-bills-sliver-gripper

shawkl said...

Yes tweezers are a must for this job. I also use a piece of tape, and the paper bits attach to the sticky side and come up with it. Hugs, Kathy

onthevergeofsnapping said...

While reading this post, I remembered an article about the man and the tweezers, in the Glastonbury Citizen (CT) and thought it pretty cool that these were made in the town I was living at the time and more importantly, in CT.

I vaguely remembered the story so I didn't want to repeat it without some facts. Doing a quick search I found this article from our local paper, The Hartford Courant, from April, 1998. It tells the story of how these came about to become what they are, and the genius behind them.

http://articles.courant.com/1998-04-16/business/9804160033_1_el-mar-ticks-called

Unknown said...

Thanks, Susan! I'm still using the Uncle Bill's that I purchased almost 20 years ago back when it came in a little tube with a screw-on cap (I have those, too.). It's the one tool that I've held onto through countless classes, moves, reorgs, etc. it still works just fine!

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