23 August 2011

Gold Needles

As I said a couple of posts ago, I bought some gold needles, they are John James gold plated cross stitch needles. I thought I'd give you my thoughts on them.

I bought these because I tarnish normal nickle plated needles very quickly, and had heard that gold plated needles may tarnish less quickly. I had also heard that they are generally much smoother to work with than nickle plated needles.

My first impression with using a gold plated needle was very good, like I had heard it went through the fabric smooth as anything. I enjoyed working with it immensly, but after a couple of days stitching the needle started to feel a bit "stickier" as it went through the fabric. I started using the needle on Wednesday, and come Sunday it looked like this:

Above, an unused gold needle;
below, gold needle used for 5 days.

It's a blurry photo (I don't have a tripod at the moment, sorry!), but I think you can quite clearly see how badly tarnished it is (well, not really tarnished, the gold plating has been rubbed away completely).

It seems to me that while initially the gold needle was more pleasant to work with, if you are like me and secrete some kind of acid or something from your finger tips, the gold plated needles tarnish much more quickly than your normal nickle plated ones.

I do wear down jewelry quite a lot though, my gold rings are wearing thin, my silver earrings turn black in a matter of days, and a silver bangle I wear that used to have a matt finish is now all smooth and shiny. If you don't have these kinds of problems, I expect gold needles would be quite a sound investment. They do cost about £1 more per pack (and you get three, rather than the normal five needles), but the feeling you get from them while stitching is quite lovely.

Next time I feel justified to spend money I don't have I'm going to try out some platinum plated needles, these cost a little more again, and you only get two per pack, but I would really like to be able to use a needle for more than a week or two.


  1. I love gold needles and use them alot and I bend mine through over use ..lol hope you manage to find ones that work for you .... I use all sorts of them but have found Jane Greenoffs ones have more gold plate on them if that helps :) love mouse xxxx

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  3. I'm so sorry that these gold needles didn't work out for you Emma! At least you've helped me out; I know not to try John James anytime soon. I use the Anchor ones myself, and they are priced pretty much on par with the nickel plated ones. If you have trouble finding any locally, send me an e-mail and I'll see what I can do :) I've never heard of platnium coated ones, and am very interesting in hearing how they work out for you if/when you do try them!