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06-15-2009, 09:44 AM
Hi everyone,

This Friday we are doing some dojo maintainance, as there is a small (approx 6 inch) tear in our canvas and some of the tatami underneath need taping back together ;)

I volunteered to mend the canvas, as I can sew, but will be doing the repair by hand as it's in the middle of the canvas, so the sewing machine won't get anywhere close to it :(

Can anybody recommend what sort of needle and thread I should use for this repair? The tear itself is at the seam where two strips of canvas are sewn together, so it's just a case of re-stitching the original seam as best I can :)

Thanks in advance,


Larry Cuvin
06-15-2009, 11:58 AM
Get an upholstery needle- the one that is bent in a semi-circle. You will probably find it in a craft store.

Good luck on the repair.


06-15-2009, 12:25 PM
You're also going to want a big ol' thimble, maybe the leather type -- otherwise it's going to be both painful and difficult. Good luck!

06-22-2009, 09:03 AM
Thanks Larry and Mary!

In the end I went to the haberdashery in a department store and asked for their advice.

They recommended a pack of general purpose tough repair needles (hippo spears :eek: ) and linen thread. The thread was great because it matched the canvas exactly :)

I took my metal sewing thimble, and tried out a few different sizes of hippo spear needle on the canvas to see which one would work best... the thinnest needle began to bend quickly, so I picked the next size up which was spear-pointed like a leather needle.

Even so, it was the toughest repair job I have ever done - my blood and sweat went into it, but no tears ;)

I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out, but the true test will be next Friday when we unfold the canvas and tension it around the frame, and of course train upon it :D

Fortunately my fingers have mostly healed and my thumb tips no longer feel like they've gone 10 rounds with a meat tenderizer... :cool: