We have featured ‘lost and found’ thimbles before on this blog but today’s collection were never lost so didn’t have to be found. They were essential items at Market Lavington School.
This collection is of very standard, ordinary thimbles. There is nothing fancy about them. They date from the first half of the 20th century. They are made of base metal and were designed to be functional rather than decorative. Mind you, many people would find them quite decorative items.
They date back to a time when the male and female genders were treated differently. Sewing was for girls although, oddly enough, being a tailor was a male job. Back in time – it could have been up to the 1970s, girls would have been expected to become proficient at hand sewing. They would have spent time at school practising the craft and learning how to do repair jobs as well as how to make new items.
Pushing a needle through tough material was hard and could be painful and that’s where the thimble came in. They were worn on the end of a suitable finger and could be used to push the needle through. The bobbled surface was intended to make sure the needle did not slip causing injury to the pusher.
We can see from this collection that thimbles came in a variety of sizes to suit any finger. None of these are as tiny as the one featured recently which was found ‘under the floorboards’ at 21 Church Street.
These thimbles are bound to bring back memories for many girls.