Did you know that before the 1880’s silver thimbles did not need to be hallmarked? No? Well, although the silver used was the correct grade to be classified as sterling, the amount used per thimble was too small making the duty payable for the hallmark more than the thimble was worth. This changed in 1884 when applying for a hallmark became mandatory. Hallmarks or any other kind of marking on a thimble helps to date it. Even the little dimples can help you tell how old it is.
They are a bit tricky to read sometimes as they are incredibly small and sometimes are worn, especially when the thimble has been well used like this one. I inherited this one from my mother-in-law, who probably inherited it from her mother. This hallmark gives the makers mark, CH for Charles Horner; the Lion symbol, indicating that it is sterling silver, the mark for Chester Assay office and the date letter. The date letter is for 1897.
I mentioned in an earlier post that I was looking at getting a Dorcas Thimble. Well here it is.
Thursday, 21 January 2010
Thursday, 14 January 2010
Now this is something you don't see every day. A group of James Bonds all in the same place. I wonder what you call a group of Bonds? A gaggle? A set? A pride? What about a Hunk? A Hunk of Bonds. Umm. That'll do me, unless you can think of something better?
From left to right we have Sean Connery, George Lazenby, Roger Moore, Timothy Dalton and Pierce Brosnan. Did you know that Roger Moore made 7 Bond films? Neither did I until I read the back of the thimble. I was also a bit surprised to see that Sean Connery's thimble says he only made 6. That's odd I thought, so I did a google search and sure enough, Sean made 6 official Bond films and 1 that wasn't official. It was called "Never Say Never Again" and was made in 1983 - but not by the people that own the Bond franchise. So it doesn't count. It's also the only Bond film (or rather non-Bond) that I have never watched. Cool. A bit of trivia which might come in handy if I'm ever on Who Wants to be a Millionaire.
This is one of the reasons I love thimbles. They are practical, decorative and educational.
Of course, if Sean Connery can't claim 7 films due to a technicality, I can't really call this a Hunk of Bonds. It's not complete. It's missing Daniel Craig. So, to get a Hunk, I'll need Daniel.
Sunday, 3 January 2010
Different people like different types of thimbles. Leather thimbles are a popular choice with hand quilters because they are durable and allow better control as the pressure of the needle on the finger can still be felt. I would like to try a leather one, but haven’t found a stockist yet. The little stick on fingertip pads that are available now also enable you to feel a needle, albeit in a kind of numb way. I have tried these but wasn’t that impressed. They allow a certain amount of needle control but I found that the sides of the little pads pick up dirt and fine threads which can be a bit of a nuisance.
Saturday, 2 January 2010
The taller silver one in the middle of the picture is just silver coloured metal and is my preferred choice for sewing with. I’ve used that for general every day sewing, for quilt making and of course, pushing pins into polystyrene.
Happy New Year.