my awning just started detaching from the mounting piece that it is sewn to. I took it to my favorite boot repair shop in town only to find it had closed. So I decided to sew it myself. After several broken needles and a sore thumb from a thimble that just didn't fit, I figured out a great way to do this kind of spot repair and thought I would share. I got a medium gauge needle (big ones were hard to push through - plus I had broken them all), and placed it longways in a pair of needle-nose pliers (in this case, my leatherman) so that maybe about a cm or two of the needle point was sticking out of the end of the pliers. then I was able to push the needle through the canvas without worries of it bending or breaking, plus no finger pain. I continued to inch the needle through with the pliers until enough came out the other side to pull it out. repeat. maybe that's just a natural idea for everyone, but it was several hours of aggravation for me till I figured this out. then it was a breeze. hope this helps someone.