Pins, pins and more pins.

With the inspiration I found at Quilt Con during Victoria Findlay Wolfe’s lecture, I have been making great headway on my trip around the world quilt.

Making headway also means an abundance of pins.  Why am I over run with pins you ask?  Well each and every 2.5” piece of fabric was once held on my design wall by a pin and now that I have a few rows sewn together all the pins aren’t sticking out of my design wall like a giant colourful fabric porcupine.  I am trying to remember where I put their original containers so I can put these pins back away until the next project I need to pin on my deign wall (and leave it there for 2 years)

I was given some easy grasp pins to product test (thank you Tammy from The Quilt Kitchen) so I thought I would review these new pins, as well as another kind of easy grip pins and my old standby regular glass head straight pins.

Here are the pins I am testing, photos of the packages and information listed on the package.

Taylor Seville Magic Pins

  • 1 7/16” length with mint green heads (other colours available) and 50 pins in the package
  • Heat resistant
  • “designer” storage case but is basically a hinged plastic case.
  • Comfort Grip handles
  • Labelled as fine

Prym Easy Grasp Pins

  • No idea the number of pins in the package as it is sold by weight, 10 grams
  • Length is 38mm which is 1 1/2”
  • Basic plastic storage container

Dritz Ultra Fine Glass Head Pins

  • Nickel plated steel
  • 1 3/8” length and 150 pins in the package
  • Heat resistant heads
  • Ultra-fine
  • Plastic storage case which as rounded corners for easy opening

Dritz Crystal Glass Head Pins in both lengths

  • 1 3/8” light blue and light yellow glass heads, 100 pins in the package
  • 1 7/8” medium blue and medium yellow glass heads, 100 pins in the package
  • Both lengths have basic plastic storage containers
  • Are not labelled as heat resistant but I assume they are since they have glass heads

 

History:  I have been sewing since I was 6 or 7 years old and started out with the basic metal pins with no glass heads. I was a kid who had no clue what good quality notions were, and I was probably using hand me down pins. Looking back these were the worst pins!  I often left a project on the go with the pins in the fabric and these pins would rust and stain the fabric. Then I got all fancy and bought the nice assortment of brightly coloured plastic head pins and once again didn’t know what I was doing and frequently melted the plastic head on the pins when ironing.

Fast forward to an adult with common sense and standards for my notions- now I buy quality pins for each application.  I have long pins for garment making, regular length pins for quilting, flat plastic flower head pins for my longarm so I can put a ruler on top of them and it doesn’t make a teeter totter on the big pin head, thick sturdy yellow head pins to pin quilts on my canvas leader of my longarm machine (big yellow heads so they are easier to see when I drop a pin) and when a pin gets bent or when the head falls off I throw these sub-par pins away.  No more using bent pins, rusty pins or ugly pins for me!

I also dream of having a collection of adorable pin cushions and even bought the Pin Pals book anticipating using up all my tiny bits of beautiful scrap fabrics.  Anyone want to guess how this dream went?  That’s right I have yet to make a single pin cushion, but if I ever do, I have amassed quite the collection of tiny bits ready to go!  Last year I received this pin cushion as a gift and LOVE it and every day when I look at it I think I should really make my own adorable pin cushion.  And yet I still haven’t.  One day………

I do have an assortment of pin dishes. My pin dish of choice is a magnetic one and never do I mix up the pins.  Each pin dish has only the same pins in each dish.  When my daughter was little she would arrange the pins in the magnetic dish so all the pin heads were going in the same direction and told me the Pin Fairy did it. (so cute) I wish my Pin Fairy was back closer to home.

Ok enough of getting sentimental and back to the pins.  Here are my thoughts on each pin.

Taylor Seville Magic Pins

  • Designer case I found difficult to open
  • When reaching for a pin without looking I found it odd to touch a different shaped pin than the ones with the round glass head I have been using for 40 years. You know when you use an item so frequently you just know the feel of it without thinking?  These pins did not have that feeling.
  • These pins are a shorter pin but did not affect the use
  • Have a nice glide to the pin when pushing it into the fabric
  • I put pins in my mouth, I know this is not safe or sanitary (I am writing this during the self-isolating time of Covid-19) and actually scratched my lip on the end of the plastic part. I think there was a bit of plastic sticking out of the end of the pin from where the plastic was squeezed from the extruder/ mould and it scratched me.
  • The more I used these pins I found I was getting familiar with the feeling of the end of the pins. I think that they would be fine if I used them in a pin cushion and not the plastic case that way I was always grabbing the shaped end and not fumbling around it the dish to pick out a pin.
  • While paper foundation piecing I found grabbing the pins quickly to remove from the fabric and paper was cumbersome. Again not being able to quickly feel which end was the end to grab was strange.
  • These pin heads did not melt when I purposely tried to iron them and melt them. Though the larger pin head shape did get stuck in the holes of my iron plate when ironing.

Prym Easy Grasp Pins

  • Even though these pins are a different shape than the regular round glass heads I am used to, they have a contoured head so when reaching for a pin without looking I could easily tell which end was the end of the pin.
  • The pin shaft is a bit thicker than I am used to
  • I like grabbing these pins from a pin cushion- they have a nice feel to them
  • These pin heads did melt and stick to the fabric when I purposely tried to melt them.  It’s hard to see in the close up photo but there is fabric melted to the purple pin head. And the larger pin head shape got stuck in the holes of my iron plate when ironing. 

 

Dritz Ultra Fine Glass Head Pins

  • I originally bought these pins because they were listed as extra fine as I like a fine pin. They are too thin/ fine and actually bend very easily.
  • Don’t use these pins because they bend
  • Decided to make these as design wall only pins because they are so flimsy but they even bend when sticking the pin into the Styrofoam design wall.
  • Do not recommend these pins at all unless you wish to spend all your time bending pins and then throwing them out

Dritz Crystal Glass Head Pins in both lengths

  • LOVE these pins
  • They are my go to pin
  • Bought the longer pins which are actually too long for me to be comfortable using them for quilting
  • Use the longer pins when garment sewing to pin the pattern piece to the fabric
  • Pins are fine enough for my liking yet strong enough that they don’t bend
  • I have ironed these pins with no issues and no melting of the pin head

 

So after reading all of that- which pins are my favourite?  Well, other than the Ultra Fine pins that are very bendy (I don’t recommend buying these pins) all the pins are my favourite for different reasons.

I like the shape of the Prym Easy Grip purple head pins over the shape of the Taylor Seville Magic Pins. The Prym shape was easier to grab.

I liked the length of the Taylor Seville Magic Pins and their ease of gliding into the fabric.  I also liked that they are in fact heat resistant and didn’t melt.

 

I also liked my old stand by round glass head pins I have been using for years.  It is probably the familiarity of the pin that I am used to, that makes me like these pins and that they are fine and glide easily into the fabric.

 

Thanks for reading my pin reviews and again thanks to Tammy from The Quilt Kitchen for letting me test the Taylor Seville pins as well as thanks to Brenda from guild for sharing her purple pins for me to test as well.