While reading about thimbles, in preparation for hand stitching my Fairy panel quilt, I remembered the rolled gold thimble my Mum had shown me. It originally belonged to my grandmother, and was given to Mum when her mother passed away.
Mum knows nothing of the history of the thimble, other than that it belonged to her mother. She had never seen it being used. We've been able to find a little information online, but not as much as we'd hoped.
J.F. is the mark of James Fenton, one of the four top thimble makers in England during the Victorian era. He ceased making thimbles in 1922.
We can't find any reference to rolled gold thimbles. Everything we've read refers to sterling silver thimbles. I'm not sure what the base metal is, but it certainly doesn't appear to be silver.
I know nothing about the sizing of thimbles. In fact, I know nothing at all about thimbles and have never mastered using one. This one is a size 9. It fits comfortably on my little finger (two photos above) and snuggly on my ring finger (below). Do people wear thimbles on their ring fingers? I can't fit the thimble on my middle finger, which is where I think thimbles are normally worn, and I have a reasonably small hand. Perhaps it's a child's thimble.
Mum and I would both be thrilled if you could throw any light on the origins of this thimble.
Do you wear a thimble when you sew? Is it worth me persevering learning how to use one? Although I don't think I could buy a rolled gold one to fit me.