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How To: Use a Sewing Palm

Sometimes, sewing up the seams on a taxidermy mount can be difficult.  From time to time, all taxidermists come across a tanned hide, that for various reasons, can be extra thick and/or extremely tough, almost impossible to push a needle through.  A sharp, 3-cornered needle helps, but in addition if you have never tried a Sewing Palm, you need to give one a try!

However,  having said that, I have found that for me, one quick adaptation makes this rig really work.  It’s all about the location of the Palm on your hand. Let me explain this by first showing how the Sewing Palm is “supposed” to be used:

This photo shows the Sewing Palm slipped over the thumb, as advised by all manufacturers.  Below is another view of the intended location on ones hand…

So far so good.  But the huge problem for me was how the needle is held to make it work.  See below:

This is how all directions and videos show to grip the needle using a Sewing Palm.  If you can make this work sewing up a deer mount, then life is good.  But it was WAY to clumsy for me and I just could not get it to work.  I guess though, where there is a will, there can be a way!  I changed the location of the Palm on my hand by slipping the thumb hole over my index finger instead of my thumb:

The Palm does not, of course, fit perfectly in this position. So you might want to do a bit of trimming purely for comfort’s sake.

But behold!  At least now I could get, what’s was for me, the right grip on the needle.  See below how I can now hold the needle naturally between my thumb and index finger, and sew away!

So if you’ve never tried one, give it a try and I think you will be pleasantly surprised at how painless it is to push a needle through the toughest of hides.  And if you’ve tried one, and didn’t like it, hopefully you will find this grip re-location to be of help.

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