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Thread: Thimble for beginning hand quilter

  1. #1
    Super Member SherriB's Avatar
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    Thimble for beginning hand quilter

    I am wanting to get started on hand quilting. I have been doing some hand piecing and really, really need to get a thimble. Right now, I am using band-aid for a thimble. LOL!! I have tried the metal thimbles but they fit to tight on my fingers.

    What is a good style or brand for a beginning quilter?
    Sherri

  2. #2
    Super Member Emma S's Avatar
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    Thimbles are kind of a get used to thing. Took me a long time to get used to using a thimble, now can't sew without them. Think the tipping point was when my hands became to tender to sew without them. I started out with the semi-soft ones from JoAnns but went back to my mothers favorite the metal with a ridge along the tip. I have swelling in my hands so I have several sizes. Trust me, if you use it for a very short period, you'll never go back.

  3. #3
    Super Member EasyPeezy's Avatar
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    My favorite thimble is from Clover. It's made of silicone with a metal tip.
    Very comfortable and doesn't slip off.

  4. #4
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    have tried so many thimbles I have lost track. The only one I really like is the plastic adjustable one (here is a pic http://www.amazon.com/Collins-C87-Pl.../dp/B000YQIXWC ) You can get them at WM or Joannes. I even got a few at a Tuesday morning a while back. I use it on my middle finger. My next favorite is the leather one. I got a large for my thumb for quilting bottom to top.The plastic one is a cheap try and you don't have to worry about fingernails.

  5. #5
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    I use the same one EasyPeezy does. Fits & stays on. I bought & tried many others til' I finally found this one. Not very expensive either. With a coupons at Joann's it's only a couple of $'s.
    Vonda-Texas MiMi of 4 Beautiful Grandbabies

  6. #6
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    I use the metal inexpensive ones from Dritz. Has a depression in the top for easy gide of the needle. I believe that after one becomes comfortable with this one then can go to more expensive ones. It comes in only about 4-5 sizes. Then for those who need more choices in sizes check the LQS. Many have a tray of many many sizes and can get a good fit.
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 03-20-2013 at 02:32 AM.

  7. #7
    Super Member 117becca's Avatar
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    I keep coming back to the leather coin thimble. The metal piece in the middle/pad of my finger prevents the needle from going thru like a leather thimble. I pick them up at JoAnn's w/ a 50% off coupon.
    my name is becca and i'm a quilt-a-holic :-)

  8. #8
    Super Member AshleyR's Avatar
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    I had to try a lot of different ones. My fingers are very large, so my favorite is a pewter one I found at an antique store. It's huge! I had to stuff moleskin in it so it will stay on. I thought I'd like an adjustable one with the jelly-padding on the inside (Singer brand), but I can't get the needle to "stay" anywhere on it, but it's really good to wear on my hand on the bottom of the quilt to push the loaded needle back to the top.
    The cheap one at Walmart is fine too. Sometimes it takes a bit to get used to one. Now I can use just about anything that fits on that finger!
    You can have any design you want. As long as it's loops!

  9. #9
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    I, like many others here, tried just about every thimble readily available. Eventually I purchased a plastic Thimblelady thimble so I could see if I liked the style. I'm now on my second stainless steel one. They are cone-shaped with an open top. You push with the pad of your finger - not the top. It takes a bit of getting used to for some but I took to it right away. Much more comfortable for me to use. And the dimples are quite deep so hold the needle very steady. The plastic and stainless steel versions are (I think) very reasonably priced - about $10 for plastic and $35 for the stainless. Must be purchased online but very good service.

  10. #10
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    My favorites are the tan leather ones made from deerskin. I probably own a dozen or so and they are scattered about my home. I am a handquilter and couldn't work without them. I also long ago trained myself to quilt with both hands if I am using a frame. When I do that I wear a thimble on my left thumb.

  11. #11
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    I have had a thought about learning to use the thimble - it's how I learned to use one.
    Back many many years ago when I was in the Army I had a need to sew patches on my shirts. I had a small sewing kit which contained a cheap plastic thimble. After almost bleading on my new shirt and patches, I finally got out the thimble.......it solved my problem. Sometime we have to be forced to do something to learn how to do it.

  12. #12
    Super Member thimblebug6000's Avatar
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    I used to use the leather & elastic thimbles but found they didn't last long enough. I started using the metal "cheaper" type (lip around top to keep needle from slipping off) & keep a few different sizes for when the hands are cold or whatever. It's like all new things, practice using them alot & pretty soon, you wonder how you did without them.

  13. #13
    Super Member Gladys's Avatar
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    No matter how many thimble's I've tried I keep going back to the old timey one my mom used.

  14. #14
    Super Member quiltjoey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EasyPeezy View Post
    My favorite thimble is from Clover. It's made of silicone with a metal tip.
    Very comfortable and doesn't slip off.
    I have tried almost all kinds and really never liked them because they were so hard to fit my large fingers. : So I bought a $90 sterling silver one that was supposed to work great but didn't. Also have plastic ones, metal ones, and leather ones but found the silicone with the metal tip that EasyPeezy is talking about and it works great! The silicone seems to just self-form around my finger and is not stiff or wobbly. You just have to find what works for you...

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    Quote Originally Posted by SherriB View Post
    I am wanting to get started on hand quilting. I have been doing some hand piecing and really, really need to get a thimble. Right now, I am using band-aid for a thimble. LOL!! I have tried the metal thimbles but they fit to tight on my fingers.

    What is a good style or brand for a beginning quilter?
    I bought my thimble too big and put a ban aid on the inside fits perfect now.

  16. #16
    Super Member mike'sgirl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EasyPeezy View Post
    My favorite thimble is from Clover. It's made of silicone with a metal tip.
    Very comfortable and doesn't slip off.
    This is my favorite as well. They come in sm, med, and lg, so they fit a big range of fingers, lol. They cost about 9 bucks, but last a long time, if your puppy doesn't chew them up. ha ha.

  17. #17
    Super Member mike'sgirl's Avatar
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    A hint that a fellow member of my guild told me was to blow into your thimble before you put it on, and it won't slip off.

  18. #18
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    I have tried a number of different ones; the silicone ones feel the best. I got "used" to using one by wearing it for several hours a day while doing whatever.
    Life may not be the party we planned for,but while we are here we should dance!

  19. #19
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    For hand quilting I have used Roxanne's and Thimblelady's thimbles and liked them quite well. I recently bought a T.J.Lane which isn't as bulky as the Roxanne and Thimblelady. I bought one for my finger and my thumb. I need a silver thimble because of skin allergies. All of these thimbles allow you to push the needle with the pad of your finger rather than the end. Having said all that, a thimble is a personal choice. For hand quilting, I recommend finding a thimble that is comfortable to wear. If you quilt with the rocking stitch, make sure it has deep dimples to hold your needle. Try the thimble on and shake your hand. If it doesn't come off, it's a good fit. I must warn you that our hands change sizes from day to day. If your thimble becomes loose, just dampen your finger (I just lick mine) and it will fit. If it's tight, I just wear it until it eventually fits again. I wash mine with soap and water periodically to get rid of the body oils that causes it to slip.

    I do not use the same thimble for quilting and sewing. I use a traditional thimble with a flat end for sewing, embroidery, etc. I don't remember the brand, but I've had it for years and take great care to not lose it.

    If you have no allergies, start with an inexpensive thimble. When you find a style you like you can upgrade later if you choose. If the metal thimbles you have tried on are too tight, you just haven't found the proper size.

  20. #20
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    Fit is so important with a thimble. I took a class from a lady who quilted with two thimbles - one on the top hand and one underneath - it was a painless way to hand quilt!

  21. #21
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    I like the same two as OCquilter. Cheap and comfortable. I like metal ones, but after a while, the ridge at the bottom (where the opening is) rubs on the finger next to it and irritates me.

  22. #22
    Senior Member rrhaigh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EasyPeezy View Post
    My favorite thimble is from Clover. It's made of silicone with a metal tip.
    Very comfortable and doesn't slip off.
    This is my favorite thimble as well. But, any thimble will take getting used to.
    Robin
    robinsquiltingroom.blogspot.com
    Southern California

  23. #23
    Super Member Gannyrosie's Avatar
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    Hum, I don't use thimbles. As everyone else has stated it has to be either a personal choice or you work at it till you get accustomed to it. For me, I'm impatient so I blew off the thimbles and now only use the little leather pads that have glue on the back of them. I go through them quickly, but I feel like I'm actually using my finger and never have my needle roll off. As far as quilting upwards , I just use my thumbs fingernail. It is what you get used to.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Traditional Quilter View Post
    For hand quilting I have used Roxanne's and Thimblelady's thimbles and liked them quite well. I recently bought a T.J.Lane which isn't as bulky as the Roxanne and Thimblelady. I bought one for my finger and my thumb. I need a silver thimble because of skin allergies. All of these thimbles allow you to push the needle with the pad of your finger rather than the end. Having said all that, a thimble is a personal choice. For hand quilting, I recommend finding a thimble that is comfortable to wear. If you quilt with the rocking stitch, make sure it has deep dimples to hold your needle. Try the thimble on and shake your hand. If it doesn't come off, it's a good fit. I must warn you that our hands change sizes from day to day. If your thimble becomes loose, just dampen your finger (I just lick mine) and it will fit. If it's tight, I just wear it until it eventually fits again. I wash mine with soap and water periodically to get rid of the body oils that causes it to slip.

    I do not use the same thimble for quilting and sewing. I use a traditional thimble with a flat end for sewing, embroidery, etc. I don't remember the brand, but I've had it for years and take great care to not lose it.

    If you have no allergies, start with an inexpensive thimble. When you find a style you like you can upgrade later if you choose. If the metal thimbles you have tried on are too tight, you just haven't found the proper size.
    I forgot to mention that I use Aunt Becky's Finger underneath the quilt. However, I recently bought T. J. 's Quick Quilter, the spoon Jinny Beyer uses and recommends. I haven't quite perfected using it yet, but it already has given me a couple stitches more per inch.

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