Ball Point Bodkin – a Favorite Sewing Tool

The ‘Ball Point Bodkin’ – a $4.25 long piece of metal with an eye on one end and a ball on the other – has been a favorite of  mine for years.  Here is a picture.  Do you have one?  I find it useful for every so many sewing tasks…

Ball Point Bodkin

  • What I have used it most for is to safely push out stitched edges on items, once they have been turned right side out – usually doing so at the ironing board right before pressing the seam on the edge.
  • I find that both the ball end and the flat end to be useful.  I especially use it in making the Shield component of the Days for Girls feminine hygiene kits.  You could see a video on that use at this video. 

Original Use Revealed

During these weird ‘Covid’ times, like many, I’ve been watching more sewing stuff online.  Just last week I caught an industry friend of mine, Linda Lee of The Sewing Workshop, on her weekly Facebook Live episode.  During that episode, she shared how very useful this same Ballpoint Bodkin is for turning a tube – of any length at all.  I tried it myself and it works like a charm.  Follow these directions – taken exactly from what Linda shared on her Facebook Live.

Stitch a Tube

Unlike what Linda shows, I prefer to leave enough seam allowance on a bias tube to ‘stuff’ the tube.  And, start with a wider area as shown to simplify the turning process.

See the white stitching for how to start stitching when creating a tube.


Insert the Ball Point Bodkin ball end first into the tube, leaving the eye end exposed.

Thread a needle with doubled thread, knot, and stitch securely to the eye end.

Stitch fabric to the eye end of the bodkin.

Push Bodkin through the tube until it pulls out the other end, coaxing the stitched end to suck in on itself.

Gently ease the fabric over on itself until the stitched end comes out the other end of the tube – thus turning it all right side out.  Cut off the stitched end from the bodkin.

WALA – a NEW turning tool – which, a Linda says, will work on ANY length of a tube you might want to turn.  And the Ball Point Bodkin is just $4.25.

Through this Friday: August 7, I’ll stick in one of these Ball Point Bodkins FREE with any shippable order of $25 or more at my website:

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