Christmas 2018

Gay Ann Rogers Needlework


Logo of scissors, needle, thread, thimble, crown


The Twelve Days before Christmas: Ten Bobkins aThreading


Occupying a ton of time this year, DH and I catalogued the parts of my collection of needlework tools between 1840 and 1914, and on December 7 we gave the catalogue and tools to a small collections library.


I kept a copy of this year's catalogue and decided to borrow from our photos and descriptions tools for

12 Days before Christmas.

Scroll down for photos and descriptions of ten bodkins/ribbon threaders.


Happy Holidays 2018


This Holiday Season on Queendom Website: The Twelve Days before Christmas told in Antique Needlework Tools.

Here are 10 Bodkins/Ribbon Threaders.

Above, American Bodkins/Ribbon Threaders

Two fish and one alligator stamped with the trademark of Simons Bros and Sterling mark. American, 1905 patent.


Above, from left:

A silver gilt bodkin honoring Queen Victora's birth in 1819 and her corontion in 1838. English, c 1840.


A rare silver bodkin commemorating Horatio Nelson's Trafalgar triumph and death aboard the ship, Victory, in 1805. English, c 1800's.


A small bodkin carrying the pensive message 'friendship without interest'.

English, c. 1820-40's.

What are Bodkins?

They look like large needles but they have a different function.

Think of threading a cord through the channel on pyjamas: that's what bodkins do, they thread cords through clothes.


In bygone days, when buttons weren't common and zippers were a long way into the future, cords closed many clothes and bodkins were necessary.


What are Ribbon Threaders?

Essentially they do the same thing: thread ribbons through channels.


Above: set of four sterling bodkins influenced by the movement known as Wiener Werkstatte (1903-1932.) American, made by Stern Bros, c. 1922.