My grandmother used that expression every time some one in our family wasted money buying something that didn’t work. I’m one of those people, I guess, because of all the money I’ve spent on needle threaders.
I’m sure it’s not as much as I imagine but I have bought and tried a LOT of them. Age has made my arms shorter and my eyesight fuzzier and I’m positive that needle manufacturers are cutting corners and making needles with smaller eyes than they used to.
In my search for a decent needle threader, I even bought one from a shady a street vendor who was hawking them on a city corner at Christmastime. Of course his worked perfectly for every demo that he did—mine fell apart when I got it home, lol.
The ones I’ve relied on the most were the little cheapo wire threaders that used to be included FREE when you bought a package of assorted sewing needles, and now are sold separately in packs of 2 for $3.18! They work fine for a while but wear out quickly and usually break at the worst time like when your flight’s been delayed or the doctor is running late for your appt. Sound familiar?
I’ve also bought some of the prettier versions of the wire threaders because I thought they would last with all that prettiness but I also thought they were a little difficult to use because of that plastic “thing” and they broke too.
Then there’s the type that reminds me of a Chinese puzzle. This also wasn’t inexpensive costing around $5.95. They are made a little better but it took me a couple of hours of reading the directions before I understood how to take it apart and thread the needle! Eventually though, even this broke.
Then I saw this Clover needle threader demonstrated on the Missouri Star Quilt Channel but I balked at the price-- $14.00 for a needle threader! Come on? It even reminded me a little of the street vendor’s version. Eventually though, I gave in because $14.00 is not a lot to pay when you are exasperated and because I’ve already spent $20.00, or more, on the other versions.
I’m happy to say, that this Clover needle threader works on most of the needles I’ve tried. Really long needles and heavy needles like tapestry and darning needles won’t fit in the needle slot but it works great on tiny quilting betweens and John James sharps which have the smallest eyes. I’ve used it with “Thread Heaven” thread conditioner on different weights and fibers of threads. It seems pretty sturdy too. I dropped mine and it still works.
To use it you have to insert the needle upside down and lay the thread loosely across the thread slot—loosely is the key word here. If the thread is too short it won’t work. You then push the lever on the right side of the device and that threads the needle with a nice little loop that you can pull through the needled. Sort of reminds me of the auto threader on my sewing machine. It also has a thread cutter, which is handy.
By the way…I’m not affiliated with Clover, Dritz, Singer, DMC, Colonial or any other company that manufactures or sells sewing notions. I’m just a consumer who has used these products and shares her experiences with them.