Befriend Your Thimble

A Virtual Class with Louisa Owen Sonstroem

Have you always been charmed by thimbles, but felt unsure how to use one? Do you gaze at that pretty little cap in your sewing basket, but you’re at a loss how to properly make its acquaintance? Would you like to increase your hand-sewing speed, precision, and endurance? 

Now is a wonderful time to make friends with your thimble. In this two-hour, live Zoom class, teacher Louisa Owen Sonstroem will discuss the different types of thimbles. She will then share the “tailor’s technique” of thimbling, which uses an open-topped thimble and is beneficial when hand sewing clothing. Through Louisa’s pre-class video here, you can learn how to make your own scrappy, makeshift, open-topped thimble using basic household materials. Or feel free to use your own thimble that fits on your middle finger.

To launch your friendship with your thimble, Louisa will guide students through making a simple lined napkin.
No previous sewing experience is necessary. 

Saturday, January 15th, 2022


11am – 1pm ET

Zoom, a link will be sent to participants
the day before class.

Sliding Scale. $35 suggested.

*This is a community class which directly supports TATTER Library

Community classes are offered to preserve accessibility and to connect participant to objects and subjects in our collection. Proceeds from these classes directly support the programming sand maintenance of our library. Thank you for your support.


  • 2 x 18″-square pieces of cotton or linen fabric (medium weight is best)
  • Another scrap for practicing on (maybe 8″-square piece)
  • Midweight cotton or linen thread
  • Hand-sewing needle
  • Pins
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Fabric shears
  • Thimble that fits on your middle finger OR materials to make one (cereal box cardboard, masking tape, paper scissors)

You will need to try on thimbles to get the right size or follow Louisa’s directions to make a thimble.

Louisa Owen Sonstroem

Louisa Owen Sonstroem believes there is little more powerful than working with one’s hands, because manual skills are empowering, enduring, and slow. Whether she is drafting sewing patterns with a pencil and paper, hand-sewing “slow fashion” clothing, or foraging wild plant fibers to spin on a drop spindle, Louisa relishes using primitive tools in sophisticated ways.

Louisa holds a B.A. from the University of Connecticut and an additional degree from the Fashion Institute of Technology, where she studied patternmaking and fashion design. She also studied patterns at RISD and MassArt. She has worked in the garment industry for several years, most recently in technical design at Macy’s and now Eileen Fisher. During her time at Macy’s she also ran a weekly employee mending workshop, building skills, community, and sustainable momentum.

You can find Louisa on Instagram @louisaowensonstroem

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