Tool tips – budget or quality? Wonder Clips

Looking at sewing supplies. Does spending more on our tools get us better sewing results? Today - Wonder Clips!

Next in our series of articles on looking at tools and equipment in the sewing room and asking if buying a better/more expensive/high quality tool will make sewing faster, easier or just more fun.  Can you sew well on a budget or will spending more money make you a better sewer?

In earlier articles we looked at:

Today I want to look at one of the miracles in the sewing room and a tool I use all the time – the Wonder Clip.  Should you buy branded or budget?

Wonder clips

OK, these are a little sewing miracle that make so many jobs just that little bit easier.  I use these all the time, especially in bag making with the thick layers, but also for quilting and binding too.  Any time I don't want to use a pin or I need an extra pair of hands to hold something, out come my Wonder Clips.

Clover Wonder Clips

They started out really quite expensive when first launched and came in small packs of 10 or 20.  Due to the cost, I only bought 10 and then quickly lost 3 of them right away so I'd really love some more.  Prices have dropped so that's great and you can now pick up a pack of 50 for under $20 – bargain, get them!

As with any innovation, knock offs are soon to appear and the Wonder Clip is no exception.  These were originally by Clover, but now you can get unbranded or generic clips for much cheaper.  They look the same, but do they perform the same?

I spotted THIS SET on sale on Amazon UK at 50 clips for £2.40 including free delivery! What, really?!  And they get a 5 star review from the people who have bought them.  UK people – what are you waiting for!  Add to cart before they change their mind.  (Price right at time of writing the article, hope its not changed…)


In the US?  Then there are also generic Wonder Clip bargains to be had.  THESE are 50 for $7.99 or 100 for $9.99.  That has got to be a bargain.  My original 10 cost me that much I think.

I was chatting about these with a bloggy friend, and we were wondering if the new knock-off versions were any good.  She bought some to try and sent a few to me, and we can't tell the difference between the original expensive ones and these new unbranded clips.

So Wonder Clips – this is one place where I actually splurged out early on and bought the good quality and now I need more, I'm tempted to buy the unbranded ones and get a great big bag for a bargain price.  These ones come in a plastic tub with a screw lid and are a pretty sunny yellow, 75 for less than $11.  Added to my wishlist!


How do you use your Wonder Clips?

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46 Responses to Tool tips – budget or quality? Wonder Clips

  1. Sue says:

    Unbranded are slightly harder to open, but work just the same. I have had thumb surgery, so will probably buy clover again. I have larger unbranded, and they work just fine. Set of small and large clips for almost no money on Amazon. LOve the larger size for sorting parts of a block and clipping together instead of bagging.

  2. Emily N says:

    I have both Clover and generic. The Clovers are stronger.

  3. Teresa says:

    I bought the unbranded ones from one of the admins in our fabric group on facebook and loved them. I use them for making ribbons cockades for hair bows. My sister has had the Clover clips since they first came out, but didn’t use them much. She preferred her alligator hair clips because it was so expensive to get enough Clover clips for a project.
    When she came over & saw me using my little clips she had me order a set of little ones and large ones for her. We love them.
    Since I use my clothespins for my laundry on the line multiple times a week, I figure we’ve saved enough heating in the summer, not to mention electricity, oil & gas to be able to justify a small bag of petroleum products.
    She has severe RA, but didn’t seem to have trouble w/ the clips we bought first. We haven’t used the larger size yet, so I don’t know how those will be on her fingers.

  4. Linda Cejnar says:

    I like the multi-colored Wonder Clips. Have red and pink, too. Bought them all discounted either on Connecting Threads website or with a 50% off coupon from Joann’s. No need to buy knockoffs.

  5. Denise says:

    I have tried the unbranded once. They tended to snag the fabric and they were harder to open (arthritic hands). The one thing I did not check was to see if they had the little measurement guides on the back. I even have the big green ones for the thicker things like purses. You can usually get them at JoAnn’s with a coupon and a lot of times they are 40% off.

  6. Cheryl Masters says:

    I recently bought some Wonder clips, but I haven’t sewn since I bought them. What I’m curious about is if I can use them to put my patterns to my fabric for cutting out the pattern, or if pins work better? I really learn a lot when I read your blogs, and the responses to them very helpful. Thank you and the people who respond with comments, because everything posted has been very helpful. I still am glad I purchased the Singer Quintet sewing machine. A little costly, but does everything except butter my toast. Thanks again for the sharing your knowledge. It certainly does make sewing more fun. As far as pins go, I took your suggestions about my retrieving lost pins. And I’m putting more effort into my pin problem and trying more diligence into finding all the ones I spilled before. However, one of those magnetic wands does sound like it would serve me well. Cheryl

  7. wheelybad says:

    I brought the same set of mini clips off Amazon (UK) for the same price. The seller had the package returned damaged, contacted me to let me know and offered to send a replacement order or refund me. I asked for the order to be resent, got them in 2-3 weeks and they’re great. At that price I don’t care if they’re lost or broken but none have broken yet. Haven’t used them on any really thick layers but if they don’t cope I’d get some bigger ones or use some of the great suggestions I have seen here- clothes pegs, bulldog clips. Recommended plus I think they still stock them

  8. Jane says:

    Since I am always up for a bargain, I had to try the unbranded ones – especially since my wonder clips tend to “disappear” in classes or on retreats…

    Did I like them?

    NO. (and a little bit of yes…)
    First, they all had pointy little plastic ends that got caught in the fabric and caused torn threads.
    Second: when I was sewing on a binding on a bag (with sometimes 4 layers of soft and stable interfacing and 8 layers of quilt weight cotton), some of the clips just chipped, some just said goodbye to the metal spring. MEH!
    I did not have these issues when using them on thinner items, let’s say for putting on a binding on a quilt. They worked (right after I used a nailfile to get rid of the sharp plastic ends which was a task that I wished I had Oompa Loompas for… took me more than an hour for all of the clips…)

    So, what did I do?
    I marked the unbranded ones with a Sharpie (the little dent in the lower back part of the clips just works fine for that since the marker won’t come off) and now I can track easily which ones last longer and which ones don’t.
    From the 100 unbranded clips that I bought about 3 months ago, more than 10 are broken already – so I don’t even bother to dig them out any longer when working at home.
    BUT: the unbranded ones are great for classes and sewing retreats 😀 I don’t care if they get “lost” somehow since I figure that they wouldn’t have lasted me much longer for use at home anyway. But if 5 just disappear in class? Who cares! 😀

    So that should explain why I keep recommending buying a 50-pack of the original clips for home use… and “whatever is the cheapest” for use at retreats 😀

  9. Sharon R says:

    I must be the exception. I bought a 50 pack of knock off clips by Embroidrex on Amazon . They arrived in a plastic cup which was nothing more than some rolled up, very thin plastic taped on the side with a lightweight top and bottom. Almost spilled them trying to get the tape undone and open.
    I tried them on some binding over thick material and promptly had 2 clips slip off their metal spring. I replaced them with my red Wonder Clips, which held tightly and allowed me to finish.

  10. T. Oglesby says:

    I had accumulated a lot of the original red clover wonderclips over time. Red happens to be my absolute least favorite color. I realized this past year there were knock offs in pretty colors like pink, purple , green and blue. I tried one small pack of knock offs from Amazon and loved them. I promptly divided and donated my original red ones to my mom, and a couple of friends. Now I sew with the knock offs in the colors that make me happy.
    I’m a very visual person, and I sew often. I would rather look at colors that I actually like. I can’t tell a difference in how they function.

  11. Jennifer says:

    I too bought the 10 Clover ones and wanted more. I bought 50 off Amazon for £2.31 (yes that’s right £2.31) with free shipping. I thought even if they are rubbish I haven’t lost lots of dosh. They arrived and I could not believe my eyes the only difference is that the Clover ones have a tiny Japan stamped on them. I have asked 3 people if they can see a difference and not one has seen any. Total success

    • Jennifer says:

      edited: just realised I hadnt attached my link. These are the ones I bought.

      • Jennifer says:

        Just ordered my second batch. I don’t have one critism with the ones I bought. Can’t comment on others

        • Jennifer Wright says:

          Just a quick update, went to a large sewing event last week and a large UK company were selling ‘unbranded’ wonder clips at half the price of Clover ones but still many times more expensive than the £2.31 ones I bought off Amazon. I have used mine lots and have not had one breakage. Lots of mine friends have now bought them.

  12. Kay says:

    I have just gone to amazon uk and ordered mine, thanks so much. x

  13. Maureen says:

    I use Bulldog clips. They are multi-use; either used in the office, kitchen for keeping bags closed, or the sewing room.

  14. linda says:

    Just waiting for my second lot to arrive from Amazon and the price is still £2.40 xx

  15. Jane says:

    I have 150 little red wonder clips because when I tried and loved them years ago I knew they would be (and are) the best for those pillowcase dress bindings in our sewing ministry. No regrets ….but I might consider trying those little yellow ones if I need more. They certainly have served me well long term so they are tried and true!!! Now rethinking – I will stick with the wonder clips!

  16. Lynda says:

    after posting my comment re wonderclips FTW, I was unpacking some goodies I bought yesterday (all fabric was 40% and quillting supplies 30% off who could resist?) I compared my Clover Wonderclips with the Sew Easy ones I purchased yesterday.
    They are exactly the same size as the Clover ones but the Clover ones are easier to open. This may be due to the larger metal spring in the Clovers or that I’ve used the Clover ones a few times. If a sewer had finger/thumb problems this could make a difference.

  17. Lynda says:

    I’m a beginner and have just used some while making a bag – wonder clips (or knockoffs) FTW!!!

  18. Sue says:

    I enjoy your web site. These little clips are a WONDER! They are an improvement on clothes pins especially for quilt binding. One side is rounded and the other is flat, which helps to keep your project flat. They have a very good grip and are a great replacement to bulky clothespins and sewing pins that can poke your fingers as you work. I usually use about 10 and move them as needed. Nice to know there is a less expensive alternative available, try them you’ll like them.

  19. Ana Sullivan says:

    I have absolutely loved using the Wonder Clips when I teach children to sew. They don’t get poked by pins in the fingers anymore. Your fabric still lays flat when you are sewing a seam because one side of the clip is flat. They are easy for little hands to remove, so they are no longer sewing over pins and breaking needles. I bought the original red ones and later bought the pink ones. I have not tried the new brands, but will have to when I need more. The price difference is incredible. See how I use the clips here:

  20. Gina B. says:

    I believe in shopping locally but the last time I ordered some it was from amazon. They were so much cheaper

    I use them every day, and now I’d like to get some of the bigger ones.

  21. GrrannyH says:

    I use old fashion wooden clothes pins, the ones that have the spring in them, not the peg kind. They seem to work just fine.

  22. Cherita says:

    These are the ones I bought-I don’t have the clover brand to compare but they are nice. They got a 5 star rating with good reviews. I paid USD $7.95 for 60. See them here.

  23. Gemma Petracca says:

    Sorry about the Wonder Clips and knockoffs. I do not use either. I use clothespins that I have had for years. They are sturdy and have a tight grasp still. If I can reuse something I already have, I will go that way instead of spending money on plastic which helps to deplete the oil and petroleum supply.

  24. Sally Groff says:

    I got my first pack of Clover clips from the dealer I got my machines from. When I needed more, I went back to her. I feel it is so important to support our local businesses when at all feasible. If I need any more, I have to say I would be tempted to go with the cheaper ones if they last as long as the Clover brand.

  25. karen says:

    I don’t use them. For years, I have used little plastic clothes pins (from the dollar stores). They are a bit bilky for some tasks, but I also use fishclips for more delicate fabrics. I do not quilt, but I have noticed that my clothes pin suppy gets completely depleted when my sister reaches some quilt assembly stages. Just saying.

  26. kathy Banfield says:

    I purchased my Wonder Clips At AC Moore with a 50% off coupon and I love them for sewing up knitted and crocheted garments.They stay in place and keep the seams flat for easy stitching.

  27. jodi says:

    thanks so much for the review. I’ve always used the dollar store little claw clasps (for hair) to pin my hand knit items together before seaming them up. they work for awhile but the little claw teeth inevitably break off. I’ve always wanted to switch to these little clips, but the price kept me away. just ordered the plastic tub of 75. thanks again!!

  28. Jennie says:

    I love these. I bought the URBest 100 clips for $10.99. I love them. I use them instead of pins for all of my sewing. I still use pins to baste quilts, but since I don’t have a large table to lay out a large quilt so I can do them a quarter at a time but the edges stay together because I start by clipping all the way around first. I love them now that they are affordable.

  29. Karen L. says:

    Thanks for doing this little test for the rest of us. I have the original ones and do like them. I might buy the cheaper ones just to have more available but are they made in China? If so, I won’t buy them. But come to think of it, are the Clover ones made in China?

  30. Lesley Gilbert says:

    I bought a box of 50 Clover about a year ago for £24 then later got 12 green ones (maybe not Clover but can’t tell the difference) free with a magazine. I just clicked on your link and bought myself 50 for £2.21. They come from China with up to 4 weeks delivery, but I’ve bought from China before and had no problems. I didn’t need any more clips but for £2.21 couldn’t resist a bargain. Thanks for your tip – I always enjoy reading your blog posts 🙂

    • Lesley Gilbert says:

      An update on the clips – my pack of 50 arrived today – they look and feel exactly the same as the Wonder clips except they don’t have the word Japan on the plastic underneath. I was surprised when they arrived, as it must have cost them £2.21 in postage alone and expected them to ‘get lost’ in the post :p

  31. Daryl says:

    I bought the 10 pack of Clover Wonder Clips, then needed more and bought the 50 pack. I used my discount coupons at JoAnn Fabrics so got them for less than half the price they had them listed for. I also bought the 24 pack of the larger Wonder Clips, which I use for other things. I love the clips and use them all the time. I had no idea someone had made a knock off version of these. If I need more I will give the knock-offs a try.

  32. Dodi B says:

    I love my clips for quilting — mostly the binding part. When I make the kitered corners I use the clip to ‘press’ the corner before and after stitching. I also use them for English paper piecing hexies and pentagons. When I mount the fabric to the paper form, I put a clip on each corner to ‘press’ the folds of the corner fabric as I stitch around the form. then I also use them to hold the two pieces together as I whip stitch them together. I don’t know what I would do without them, I purchased a bag of 100 at a very, very good price at a quilt show — just to keep as a spare (had bought both a 10pc and 50pc package. –Dodi

  33. Julia Arnold says:

    Thank you for tip on Amazon clips, I have placed my order, wait and see how these fair to Wonder Clips, 91 5 stars reviews tell you they must be good, this will save time not having to count up my clips when I have finished using them, they are so precious……and a must for all sewers

  34. C.Bowling says:

    I bought the knockoff colorful one, $9.99 for 50 in a small plastic bottle, I like that, they work real good! I don’t even use 50 of them, like 10 of them at a time. I will say if you are in a budget like me, get the cheap one! 😀

  35. Patricia Scarberry says:

    I purchased the Clover brand 1st and then found the knockoffs. The cheaper ones do the same job for less $. I recommend the cheap ones.

  36. Paulett Srubar says:

    I purchased the 50 pc. Embroidex clips from Amazon. Out of 50 I had about 3 that were not perfect, Still a bargain @ 47 clips for $9.99

  37. Leila says:

    I use clips when I’m sewing knits or anything too thick to pin. I was using binder clips, but when I use them a lot they hurt my fingers, so I just bought some knock-off Wonder clips. They seem OK so far.

  38. Diane B. says:

    I have been looking at the unbranded ones on Amazon. I was wondering if there was a difference. I’m glad that you tested them and now I know that I am safe to save a bit on money on the off brand. I also like the yellow ones you showed at the end because it seems you can see thru them a bit, which may come in handy. Thanks for the info!

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