A Travelling Needlewoman

I’m not very keen on flying, I’m better than I used to be but I can’t say I enjoy it. For our long haul flights this time I decided to take some sewing to keep my mind occupied. I packed about half a dozen project bags each with all the threads, needles, fabric and of course the pattern. The only thing left to pack was some scissors…

I read lots of comments on facebook about what airlines allow and what they don’t, it does seem very variable, some of them don’t even allow nail clippers or floss cutters, so I decided to do a mini test! IΒ  packed different types of cutting implements to see what would be allowed and what would be confiscated.

I packed some pretty little floral scissors, they’re actually very sharp but they have a blade less than 1″. They are also very cheap so it didn’t matter if I lost them. (I did take the fob off first!!)

I packed some paper scissors, they were sharp enough for thread, a longer blade, but importantly they had a rounded blunt end.

The last thing I packed was a clover thread cutter. This is a notched disc with a circular blade inside. I threaded it with ribbon to make it into a pendant.

Our flights to Australia were with Emirates, they studied both pairs, interestingly they seemed more concerned about the blunt pair. I had been careful to put them inside the project bags so it was obvious what they were for. They let both pairs go through.

Sydney to Bali was with Virgin, they confiscated the floral pair as they had a sharp tip.

Bali to Kuala Lumpar was with Malasian Airlines, they confiscated the blunt pair.

Nobody took any notice of the thread cutter round my neck. I sent it through the scanners like a pendant and they never gave it a second glance. It was actually perfect for sewing on the move, I never actually used any of the scissors in the end. As it was hanging round my neck there was never any issues with dropping them, loosing them down the side of the seat or even just having to furtle round in the bag every time. It doesn’t cut quite as close as a pair of scissors but I can always trim off loose threads later.

On the flights to Australia I managed to finish February of the Joyful World calendar by Maja Matyas of The Snowflower Diaries. I think February is a particularly sweet design with the two ducks sitting together. The linen is actually a really pretty soft shade of green, but it’s not showing up on the photos. I’m making these into mini cushions with the idea of eventually having a basket of seasonal ‘smalls’ on display. Obviously there is a bit of catching up to do as I’ve still to make it up and were already nearly at the end of March!

February Joyful World from The Snowflower Diaries

I did lots more sewing over the three weeks which I will show you over the next few days. Between flights, airports, sitting round the pool ( I can’t just sit and do nothing!) I got quite a few hours in!

My final tip for flying…I found a use for some leftover binding strips from the Kaffe Fassett quilt, I wrapped it tightly round the handle of my purple suitcase, I could spot it a mile off on the baggage carousel!

About craftycreeky

I live in a busy market town in Yorkshire with my husband, kids, dogs and chickens. I love trying new crafts, rediscovering old ones, gardening, walking...anything creative really I started this blog after my New Year resolution worked so well. My resolution (the first one I've ever kept!) was to post a photograph of my garden on Facebook every day. My hope was that I would then see what was good in the garden and not just weeds and work, which was my tendency. The unexpected side-effect was that I have enjoyed many more hours in the garden. I am hoping that 'The Crafty Creek' will have the same effect. Happy creating!
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33 Responses to A Travelling Needlewoman

  1. claire93 says:

    I have one of those thread cutter pendant things, sadly I don’t take the plane often enough to think of using it ^^

    Liked by 2 people

  2. katechiconi says:

    I had a tiny pair of gold embroidery scissors confiscated in Sydney, despite the fact that the blades were less than an inch long… too pointy, apparently. I’ve tried the Clover pendant thingy but can’t seem to get a clean enough cut. My favourite is a minute pair of Japanese ‘mini-scissors’, with rounded blades about 8mm long, and a spring between two button-like handles to squeeze to close the blades. There’s a guard to go over the tip to hold it closed and make it safe. I can get those, plus a silver needle case, plus some antique wooden bobbins wound with thread, into a little tin for plane travel. Works like a dream.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Prue Batten says:

    I pre-cut threads for the project I’m doing, (obviously involves a fair bit of decision-making and planning about what and for how long), I take two needles inserted into the fabric of my project, fold it all into a small square and place all in a plastic ziplock bag in my handbag which has four zip pockets and a little matching zip-bag inside (brilliant for travel as it fits everything I need whilst flying) and so far so good. But I haven’t done long-hauls for quite a few years. I loathe flying and short-hauls are bad enough! πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Catherine says:

    Well done on getting some stitching in on the flight! I’ve never attempted it – I fidget far too much for it to be a worthwhile activity to take with me!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. kathyreeves says:

    Isn’t interesting what the airlines decide is dangerous? Sometimes I think it is a matter of what they need in the security office!πŸ™„

    Liked by 2 people

  6. tialys says:

    I can’t bear flying any more – the hour and a half it takes to get over to the U.K. is about all I can stand these days. It always surprises me that they apparently let you take on knitting needles – though I’ve never attempted it myself.

    Liked by 2 people

    • craftycreeky says:

      I’m sure knitting needles are not allowed, though I know of one relative who put them in her carry on suitcase making sure they were behind the metal bars in the bottom. The air stewardess was very shocked to see her knitting and confiscated them until the end of the flight πŸ™‚


      • tialys says:

        My husband commutes between here and the U.K. every week and there is regularly a woman knitting on his flight, Also I’ve read on other blogs about people taking knitting with them to do on long flights. I’ve taken knitting needles on in my cabin bag so they got through Security but I didn’t get them out on the aircraft. It all seems a bit random.


  7. KerryCan says:

    If only the airlines would all agree, once and for all, what’s allowed, then we could comply!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. rosejasm says:

    How very interesting to read what is aloud and what isn’t!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Maia T. says:

    I had a pair of *plastic* children’s safety scissors confiscated before I got on a flight from New York to London. Considered safe for a 3 year old to not jab into an orifice, but not for me to cut thread with (which they would only just barely do). If I hadn’t had to catch my plane, I would have thrown a TSA Tantrum.

    The man behind me in line was quintessentially English, bless him. He ended up sitting next to me. He bought us drinks to toast my ridiculous scissors. And then another round to toast what we would be getting with our meals, which turned out to be plastic utensils. He finished his meal, snapped the end of the spoon off the handle, and we pondered how many ways there were to kill someone with it that my ridiculous scissors would have failed to accomplish. (Sadly, it wouldn’t cut thread. We tried. *laugh*)

    Liked by 3 people

  10. tinaor says:

    I carry a thread cutter similar to your pendant but less pretty – your’s is lovely! I have never had mine confiscated. I knit on flights but with circular needles and have not been challenged so far. I usually take a cheapish circular just in case someone decides not to let it through – and a friend recommended carrying waste yarn so if you are forced to take the stitches off a current project you can save it onto the waste yarn. I did wonder about sewing needles, surely even a sewing needle could be seen as ‘dangerous’ as a pair of scissors? I don’t pack sewing up needles in my knit project bags, just in case. One hint which I’d like to pass on – I wish I’d known this on my last flight – don’t take black yarn on a project when you are taking a night flight – the cabin lights go down and the personal overhead lights aren’t good enough to knit well!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Kate says:

    I was worried about taking my crochet hooks on my recent flight to the US, so I bought a couple of inexpensive hooks for the flight. They were fine. I have also heard that they will allow nail clippers as long as they don’t have a nail file attached. That’s what I took with me, and had no problems.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Pingback: A Snip of Scissors | thecraftycreek

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