Carolyn Pearce Home Sweet Home workbox 21: assembling the thimble holder

I’m now ready to put together the thimble holder from Carolyn Pearce’s book ‘Home Sweet Home: an embroidered workbox’.

Here are all the pieces I need, including plastic for lacing the pieces onto, and thin wadding.

Thimble 15

I hand stitched the sides of the thimble holder into a tube first of all. Carolyn suggested doing this on a sewing machine, but I couldn’t be bothered to get mine out for such a small amount of stitching! It seemed to be strong enough when hand stitched, anyway.

Thimble 16

The next bit was a little tricky. Carolyn recommends making the plastic liner into a tube, sticking wadding on it, and then inserting that into the tube of embroidered stripes. I didn’t think that would work with mine, as the measurements have to be really precise, and I was right. I used the method that I had used for the spool holder instead – I rolled the plastic up as tightly as I could and inserted it into the embroidered tube, then let it unfurl. Then I taped it to fix the size. I didn’t bother with wadding, as I felt it would make it too bulky. Even so, I needed to trim the plastic a quarter of an inch off the long side, and 3/8 of an inch off the short side, to make it fit. Once I had done that part, I laced the top and bottom edges of the striped tube together over the plastic.

Thimble 17

I laced the base over a circle of plastic, padded with thin wadding.

Thimble 18

Then I ladder stitched the base to the tube. My base didn’t quite fit *inside* the tube, as Carolyn’s did in the book, which doesn’t matter as far as it goes, but I think it will make it too tall to fit into its relevant compartment in the finished workbox.

Thimble 19

The lining was made from cream cotton. I made a small seam on the short side first.

Thimble 20

The base piece has a row of tiny back stitches worked all round the seamline first, in a circle, so that the turned back hem of the side wall can be slipstitched through the back stitches to hold them together. Sounds more complicated than it actually was to do!

Thimble 21

The lining was pushed into the thimble holder, and ladder stitched around the top edge to hold it in place.

Thimble 22

I covered a piece of thin plastic with the cream silk piece for the underside of the lid, and slipstitched that to the reverse side of the lid.

Thimble 23

Then I worked a line of knotted pearl stitch around the edge of the lid, starting at the centre back. As I almost completed the line, I incorporated the top edge of the thimble holder itself for five stitches, to attach the lid, and make a hinge.

Thimble 24

Finally, I added an 8mm cloisonne bead to the front, and worked a buttonhole stitch loop to the front edge of the lid, to hold the thimble holder closed.

Thimble 25

This is the thimble holder now it is completed – I’m pleased with how this has turned out.

Thimble 26

It’s almost a centimetre taller than the measurements Carolyn gives in her book, but it still looks nice  🙂

Thimble 27

And a thimble fits neatly inside, which is the main thing.

Thimble 28


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9 thoughts on “Carolyn Pearce Home Sweet Home workbox 21: assembling the thimble holder”

  1. Fantastic – thank you for all the photos Janet – if I ever get to work mine I will appreciate these.

  2. This is so delightful! As I read through your post, I was thinking what a good job it is that you are a miniaturist … you must need endless patience with such a tiny project. Very inspiring! 🙂

  3. It looks fantastic and you were so good putting it together. Which thread did you use for lacing?

  4. Did you use the plastic mentioned in the book or something else? I am not sure I would be able to put it together as well as you did. Your process is quite detailed and helpful if I ever get there.

  5. Absolutely beautiful and charming! I am so amazed and impressed that you are able to work something this tiny with such exquisite stitches!! Kudos!!

  6. That is so cute! When I first saw the side(s), I thought it would make a superb dollhouse flower-pot; I guess it’s actually a workbox flowerpot for the cottage.

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