The hand needle. You know that long, thin silver thing with a hole in one end for that stringy stuff called….thread? My daughter pulled this Teacher’s book, “Home And School Sewing” by Frances Patton published in 1901 for a girl’s school in Philadelphia from my collection and asked me what it was. For one thing she was amazed that people actually mended clothing instead of throwing them out when they became torn or worn.
After a cursory flip through the book with her, I then went back and looked more closely through the contents. I found this chapter on the basics of the needle and threading instructions. Talk about breaking it down to the basics! For your entertainment, here is how to thread a needle. Of course if you are left handed, the opposite would be true. There will be no test.
Don’t you love how they titled it, “The Needle Drill”? I don’t think the word “drill” exactly whips up excitement and the urge to learn do you? Despite the harsh terminology, I still find useful information and skills to be learned from these old books that we can’t find anymore in modern publications or classes. They were taught, and learned, the skills to create beautiful workmanship which resulted in the beautiful things we treasure today and I think there is a lot to be said for that.
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