My Favorite Thimble

Posted on March 13, 2018 by prairiemoonquilts in Handstitching, Reviews

I’m not sure I could continue quilting without them.

Or if I did, I’d be a grouchy quilter.

I’m talking about ThimblePads.

I LOVE to do handwork.

It’s my quilting task of choice.

From hand piecing, to whipping down the binding when it’s done, I love the entire process of handwork.

I love hand embroidery and beading, English paper piecing, and hand quilting, too, but my very favorite type of handwork is needle-turn hand applique.

However, I could not do any of it as comfortably as I do without ThimblePads.

I’ve been quilting for over 43 years, and trust me, I’ve tried every thimble there is. For awhile, I was on a thimble mission, snatching up every new one I saw and giving it a try.

Trouble is, if I put a normal metal thimble on my “quilting finger”, that finger instantly becomes useless. I even hold it out away from my other fingers as if it’s suddenly become deformed or injured in some fashion, and I can’t use it. I gave them a good chance . . . tried oh so many different kinds and brands . . . but nope — as soon as the thimble goes on, the finger goes out of commission.

If I try the softer ones, they work for about 5 minutes. I push really hard when hand quilting, and the needle always ends up going backwards through the thimble and sticking me anyway. Or getting stuck in the thimble and I can’t get it back out.

I admire those of you who can use a real thimble. But it baffles me. And eludes me. Even after years of trying . . .

But about 15 years ago I found ThimblePads, and they changed my life. Whoda thunk a little 1/4″ piece of fuzzy leather with a sticky side could be such a life-altering invention?

You just stick it on the spot on your finger where you push the needle, and there it stays while you stitch to your heart’s content. If you have to take it off, it will restick many times before you have to switch to a new one.

It’s very comfortable. You hardly know it’s there. In fact, I’ve even at times forgotten I’m wearing one, and found myself washing dishes with it still on!

They come 12 in a package for around $7, and a package will last quite awhile.

If you hand quilt, they also have a product called UnderThimble, which is a metal disk for the hand you use on the bottom.

It has little adhesive circles that you use to stick the metal one to your bottom finger, and it keeps you from turning your under finger into hamburger while quilting.

Some are worried that you can’t “feel” the needle well enough, and I was, too, at first, but really, you can, and you get used to it. And you just buy sticky refills for the metal piece when you need them, which isn’t very often.

If you’d like to get some, I don’t think you’ll be sorry. Ask at your local quilt shop.

(I have a couple of the UnderThimbles packets left in my shop — but no refills or Thimblepads left.)

7 responses to “My Favorite Thimble”

  1. denniele says:

    I love these! I also use the dimpled metal thimble on the top! Just love your description of the useless thimbled finger!!!

  2. Deanna says:

    Me, too. I can’t imagine binding without them. Actually, I can, and it wasn’t nice. My “pushing” finger would get so sore and raw….These genius-simple items are the cure.

  3. Rose Marie says:

    I love these too. And I have tried cheaper versions of this protection and they don’t work as well. (the sticky gives out).

  4. Elaine says:

    I thought I was the only sewer around who couldn’t use a thimble. Lol Glad to know I’m not. And yes I have these and love them.

  5. Judy says:

    I use a metal dimpled thimble with a rim on top for hand quilting but love Love LOVE these for hand applique, embroidery, bindings etc.

  6. Sandy in Northern Minnesota says:

    Oh, My Gosh! I’ve tried many thimbles as well and as soon as I put one on that finger becomes useless! I thought I was the only one. I’ve gone thimble less for many years because I just couldn’t wear one. I’m definitely going to give the Thimble Pads a try!
    Thanks for the review!

  7. Kris P says:

    I love Thimble Pads for English Paper Piecing and quilt binding. I EPP every evening. One pad usually lasts me about a month, so a pack is a year’s supply for me. I just stick it to a smooth surface in my EPP kit when I’m done, and it’s ready for me when I come back.

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