Tools / Tutorials

Testing a tubing turner

The Tubing Turner

On a lark I bought a cheap tubing turner today. The design is pretty nifty, just push a hook through the fabric and pull. But after a quick test run I am not entirely convinced. The hook is rather flimsy and kept opening up and getting caught in the fabric instead. I had to use a lot of control and some gentle guiding with the fingers to stop the hook from opening. After about three tries it did get easier, maybe it’s mostly a handling issue, but I had expected the tool to make it much easier.

My usual method is to close one end of the tubing and then gently push that end with a blunt object, normally a chopstick. My least favorite method is the needle and thread, because unless the needle is really blunt, it keeps piercing the fabric, plus I find it hard grasping the needle when it’s inside the fabric.

Which is your favorite way of turning a tubing?


  • Make It Happen Mama
    August 5, 2012 at 7:37 pm

    I normally tie a piece of yarn to the end of a large safety pin, thread it through the tube, attach the safety pin to the end of the fabric, and push the fabric down over the safety pin. Sorry for the run-on sentence, but there it is 🙂

  • argie
    August 5, 2012 at 8:05 pm

    I bought a hemostat and it works pretty well. I have one of those turners, too, but I couldn't get the hang of it at all. The hemostat is much easier for me. I got it at a quilting store, although I'm not a quilter. If you want to read a bit about it, I found this:

    I highly recommend it!

  • Sums
    August 5, 2012 at 9:33 pm

    Seconding the Safety Pin Method. Safety pin one end of the tube, then run it back through.

  • cidell
    August 5, 2012 at 9:33 pm

    I also use a chopstick. I have so many laying around just for doing this. Thanks for the review. Maybe I'll have to find and check one out myself.

  • poppykettle
    August 5, 2012 at 10:46 pm

    I've been wondering whether buying a tool like this would make things easier… I love cidell's idea of using a chopstick though!!

  • Kathie
    August 5, 2012 at 11:56 pm

    I have a Fasturn Set…. they are copper tubes of varying sizes and long, skinny wires with a twist at the top. you slide the tube into your sewn fabric, fold the top of the fabric over one end of the tube, slide the wire up the middle of the tube and twist the corkscrew into the fabric and pull the fabric down, through the metal tube… the set is pricy, but it works every time!

    I found the best price in the US to be at Nancy's notions ( shows the device and how it works

    Another, low tech way is to cut a piece of string or yarn a bit longer than your fabric tube and lay it inside the folded fabric… don't catch it in the long seam, but stitch across one end of the fabric tube, catching the string. You then pull the string out the un-sewn end and it turns the tube right side out.

    good luck!

  • Margo
    August 6, 2012 at 1:48 am

    I have this tube-turner and I don't like it much, for the reasons you said. I got the set of tubes with push-sticks (like chopsticks) and they work so fast and quickly.

    I find that I make tubes a lot, for whatever reason.

  • luckylibbet
    August 6, 2012 at 8:29 am


    Works for all but the thinnest turnings.

    It's similar to the chopstick but with the addition of the tubes. One of the best sewing investments I made, use it all the time.

    Johanna, you might find a European vendor who could offer a better price than Amason US, but the link provides product details. Hope this helps.

  • KellysSewing
    August 7, 2012 at 12:39 am

    A bobby pin. I slightly bend in the tip of the bobby pin that is flared out. Cut a tiny slit in the fabric near the end, insert one leg of bobby pin into that slit, insert bobby pin into tube of fabric and you can push it through from the outside. Never gets caught. Always works.

  • Johanna
    August 7, 2012 at 8:17 am

    Awesome suggestions, I will comply them for another post!

  • Summer Flies
    August 8, 2012 at 5:22 am

    I use one of these all the time and although it is not very strong it is very slim and that makes it useful for thin straps etc. A chopstick sometimes is just too thick. I have loved mine for many years and found it very useful. The only thing is that if the fabric is fine or not such great quality then the hook can tear it.

  • Claire
    December 14, 2018 at 10:55 pm

    I like to make the strap with my overlocker, so first I make a chain a little longer than the strap. I lay this down the centre of my strap, from bottom to top & fold the fabric in half & overlock the strap seam. Then you just pull the chain, which is attached to the top of the seam & Hey Presto, it turns itself out!!

    • Johanna
      December 19, 2018 at 11:08 am

      That’s really clever!


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