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Saturday, February 8, 2014

Hari-kuyo: Festival of the Broken Needles Honored at IHAN ® Today

When we join needle to thread and begin stitching, in time, our skills improve and we create more masterful pieces.  Our skills are not improving on their own, it is the needle that works along side of us to join the thread to fibers...a co-creating of sorts.  Those fallen counterparts (the needles and pins) are "laid to rest" if you a ceremony or festival honoring their work and it is called Hari-kuyo.  
Hearing about Hari-kuyo several years ago, I had a desire to have a Festival or Ceremony of my own.  Today was "that"  day and I did it the same way I do most everything in my life, I winged it.  If I were Native American I'm sure I would have been named "flies by seat of pants".
With my limited knowledge and understanding, I gathered the pins and needles from my sharps container and all that were collected from the IHAN® Needle Exchange Program.   A candle was lit and I began focusing my attention on gratitude for all those needles and their joining with me in my quest for improved needle art skills. 
 Reflecting on all that I've asked those needles to do and being grateful that not a one of them laughed at me or all my mistakes.   Taking time to think about the gifts that needle work has brought to my life and how being part of the needle arts community has changed me as a those needles seem very sacred and treasured parts of my jouney.  Tossing them into the trash seems difficult if not impossible.  I will lay them to rest in the flower garden in  front of my home where I also have hung bird feeders as a memorial to my mother.  Birds will sing over the top of those broken needles...what a wonderful resting place.
This experience has been powerful for me and I'm so glad I participated in Hari-kuyo this year. 

Smiles of Gratitude,

You can read more about Hari-kuyo from these sources or you can visit the "wise village elder" aka Google:
Stitchtress Stumbles
Audrey Yang at ISSUU


  1. I also "celebrated" the Festival of Needles here today. My worn and broken needles are under a rose bush in my garden.
    It is a great way to reflect on our past 12 months of stitching.

  2. ....and thank you for the links! Off to read them now. :)

  3. What a powerful message. I never thought to do that. I believe you have given those needles a honorable send off. And putting them in the garden...perfect!

  4. I feel bad...I just put them in an empty bottle and when it is full tape it shut mark it broken sewing needled and off the trash it goes...:(

  5. And they were good needles. They brought us lots of joy and beauty. Awesome post!

  6. Through my needlework, I've been blessed by your friendship, inspiration & guidance. You've laughed me through the hard parts (and you know which ones they were!) and you've cried me through the funny ones. Along the way, we've snorted root beer through our noses and peed our pants - what more could I ask of a needle or two?

    I'm honored to have my needle in with yours, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart & soul.

  7. What a great post. I am always reluctant to part with broken, bent or dull needles. I think I will save them for next year and look for a way to thank them for all the joy and pleasure they give!

  8. I am concerned that after burying them in the ground, whoever happens to dig in that spot later will be surprised, or even worse pricked, with rusty points. Everyone had their tetanus shots?

  9. I will think about this! I have several pill bottles full of broken or bent needles. We do lots if digging in the yard so not sure I want to bury but I live the idea do thank them!


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More Later-Beth


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