This Sunday, February 8, 2015, is the celebration of Harikuyo, the Festival of Broken Needles.
As many readers and needlebook course graduates know, Harikuyo is the day when the needleworkers of Japan take their used and broken needles to the shrine to respectfully put them to rest.
I've written about the festival many times so if you're new to this blog, feel free to read more about the festival here, here and here.
I've been observing Harikuyo since 2011 when my BNF and Japanese-Embroidery sister, Carol-Ann Conway, posted about the festival on Stitchin' Fingers. That year, I heeded her call to honor our needles in some way by making a special needlebook.
It had 10 pages, one page for every type of needle I use, and a needle felt on the back cover for storing needles and pins that break throughout the year.
Many of you liked the idea so I went on to make a pattern, create an online course, and sell woven fabric labels to sew onto the pages. Since then, hundreds of you all over the world have made needlebooks...which just amazes me.
My original needlebook has rarely left my side. It's one of my most treasured tools; I use it as often as I do a pair of scissors.
This weekend, in honor of my five-year Harikuyo anniversary, I'd like to make a new needlebook.
I'm not sure if I will finish it but I will at least start. For some time, I've been wanting to make a modern etui of needlework tools that I use frequently in my needling life. So...nothing like a holiday to get me motivated.
Which leads me to you.
Would anyone out there like to join me?? Maybe you enrolled in the course and started but haven't yet made the book? Maybe you need a new needlebook? Or maybe you just need to organize and spruce up the one you already have. I would love to hear stories about how you use your needlebooks and what it has meant to you. Or, more simply, see just a photograph of your needlebook on your worktable or in its characteristic place.
Never thought of honoring your needles? It's never too late or too early and what better opportunity than the festival this Sunday! There's no goal or time limit, you can choose to play or not, or maybe just find a moment to honor all your tools that help you in your work.
I will post my observation and needlebook progress on Sunday (not too early...how about Noon EST?) and will set up Mr. Linky on the post so we can visit your blog if you have something to share. It will be a needle party!!
To help you along, I've re-stocked the needle labels in my Etsy shop. Based on user feedback, I replaced the "Sashiko" label with an "Etcetera" label. Turns out that not many folks use a Sashiko needle in their daily life (*WhAt??*)...Etcetera gives you the option to add specific needles such as felting, doll making, etc...
That means if you have a set of the original labels, consider it a limited edition!!
Happy Friday everyone! I hope to see you on Sunday for Harikuyo!