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Know Your Seam Ripper

Sara Curtis

Used to remove unwanted stitches and open buttonholes on sewing projects, the seam ripper is a must have in every sewist’s sewing basket. The earliest seam ripper patent dates back to 1871. It was a multipurpose tool with a slot that could be used as a wrench on one end and a protected blade for cutting through stitches on the other. Today’s current seam ripper design was patented in 1953 by Herman Ament for the Boyd Needle Company. Before the modern seam ripper many sewists would use a razor blade or needle to pick out stitches. Many names have been given to the trusty seam ripper, but did you know that it also has many uses?

Anatomy of a Seam Ripper

The basic seem ripper has remained unchanged since the mid-1970’s. However, there have been several upgrades that have taken place over the years. For instance, the Seam-Fix seam ripper added a silicone beehive head to pull out and “erase” loose threads from opened seams. Ergonomic handles aid in the comfort and use of the seam ripper. Curved blade seam rippers have an exposed blade for opening serged seams.

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