To save losing needles on the work bench, when I put them down, I spike them through a small scrap of brightly coloured leather.
I find the leather to be a useful handle ~ to help hold the needle steady whilst threding it.
Another use for the leather strip is to help anchor the endof the thread when sewing.
On completion of sewing the section, the threads need to be tensioned before tying the knot. It helps to have a firm hold on the thread ends ~ the leather strip helps.