Today I learned about the Mass for Broken Needles, a Japanese tradition where women take all the needles that they’ve broken to temples to be blessed and thanked for the work they did.
Japan’s throwaway culture can rival that of any Western country, but at the Sensoji temple in central Tokyo, dozens of women in jewel-coloured kimonos honoured their broken tools with the 400-year-old rite….
…”Sometimes there are painful things and secrets that women can’t tell men, and they put these secrets into the pins and ask the gods to get rid of them,” he added.
I don’t remember breaking any needles this year but if I did I’m sure I swore and threw them out instead of thanking them for working hard for me. I burned some incense in my sewing room today as an offering of thanks for my tools. It is a good lesson to remember.
I’ve broke several (last week even), I don’t have a ritual but I do have a resting place for them.
I purchased a clear glass holiday ornament. I started with an egg shaped ornament, but have graduated to a larger round one. The globe is hung in my studio window and when I break a needle or bend a pin beyond redemption, it is added to the mix. I’ve added many snips of speciality thread – may of which are the cause of the broken needles! LOL
I use it as a type of witch ball for my studio, as well as being a very safe way for disposal of the needles.
I think today I will do a small ceremony for all my tools, this might be an especially good idea, as I have a tempermental machine to use today – yesterday it got the best of me… Today I think we will cooperate and work with each other.